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Williams named director of hospital medicine division

Recognized for expertise in quality improvement, teamwork, care transitions

by Diane Duke WilliamsAugust 24, 2021

UK Healthcare

Mark V. Williams, MD, a respected leader in hospital medicine, performance improvement and health-care delivery, has been named director of the Division of Hospital Medicine in the Department of Medicine at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. He also will become head of the hospitalist services at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Barnes-Jewish West County Hospital. His appointment will become effective Oct. 1.

Williams currently is director of the University of Kentucky Center for Health Services Research, and chief quality and transformation officer at UK HealthCare in Lexington, Ky.

“Mark Williams is well known for his ability to translate scholarship, innovation and research into practice improvement,” said Victoria J. Fraser, MD, the Adolphus Busch Professor and head of the Department of Medicine. “He focuses on developing new systems of health-care delivery that provide outstanding value and are patient-centered and cost-effective. He brings extraordinary experience to our Division of Hospital Medicine and will continue to advance the division’s clinical excellence and innovation in safety and quality.”

Williams’ research focuses on quality improvement, care transitions, teamwork and the role of health literacy in health-care delivery. He has published more than 170 peer-reviewed articles and received more than $34 million in grants and contracts as a principal investigator or co-principal investigator.

Williams earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Florida in Gainesville, Fla., and his medical degree from Emory School of Medicine in Atlanta. He completed his residency in internal medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, followed by a general medicine faculty development fellowship at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, N.C. He served on the faculties and developed academic hospital medicine programs at Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta, Emory Healthcare and Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago before he was recruited to UK HealthCare. He built the hospitalist program at UK HealthCare.

He is an active clinician and has practiced as a hospitalist in large academic settings and community hospitals in Georgia, Illinois and Kentucky.

During his career, Williams has served in a number of national leadership roles, including as president of the Society of Hospital Medicine, founding editor of the Journal of Hospital Medicine and an advisory panel member of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality’s Patient Safety Network.

Williams’ new role previously was held by Mark Thoelke, MD, professor of medicine, who led the division from 2009 to 2020. Michael Lin, MD, associate professor of medicine, became the interim division director in 2020, when Thoelke stepped down.

Washington University School of Medicine’s 1,700 faculty physicians also are the medical staff of Barnes-Jewish and St. Louis Children’s hospitals. The School of Medicine is a leader in medical research, teaching and patient care, consistently ranking among the top medical schools in the nation by U.S. News & World Report. Through its affiliations with Barnes-Jewish and St. Louis Children’s hospitals, the School of Medicine is linked to BJC HealthCare.