Welcome to BIME

pth-use-this-oneWelcome to the Department of Biomedical Informatics and Medical Education.

Our vision is to unleash the potential for information to improve biomedicine, health and education. We do this via a three pronged approach leveraging the bidirectional synergies between a) basic and applied research, b) training the next generation of researchers and practitioners, and c) applying our expertise to the broader operations of UW Medicine including research, clinical care and medical education through the practice of Biomedical Informatics and the practice of Medical Education and Evaluation.

To achieve our vision it is key for us to recruit the next generation of students and faculty. New fellows are on board for our Clinical Informatics fellowship. New Post-docs will be starting in September. Finally we are in the midst of an annual faculty recruitment cycle as part of our strategic plan to expand by 50% our core faculty, with 6 positions remaining to be filled over the next two years (see link).


Peter Tarczy-Hornoch, MD
Chair and Professor, Department of Biomedical Informatics and Medical Education

News Highlights

Following are some recent BIME news highlights. For more BIME news, publications, and events, check out our News and Events page.

Dr. George Demiris Accepts New Position at the University of Pennsylvania

It is with great sadness for UW BIME and great happiness for George that we are announcing that Dr. George Demiris has accepted a position as the University of Pennsylvania’s 22nd Penn Integrates Knowledge University Professor effective Jan. 1, 2018. The Penn Integrates Knowledge program is s a University-wide initiative to actively recruit exceptional faculty members whose research and teaching exemplify the integration of knowledge across disciplines and who are appointed in at least two schools at Penn. George will hold a joint appointment in the School of Nursing (Department of Biobehavioral Health Sciences) and the Perelman School of Medicine (Department of Biostatistics, Epidemiology, and Informatics).  This is an incredible honor for George and please join us in congratulating him. We have begun work on a transition and succession plan for George’s various roles in the department and will be sending updates as these transition plans are finalized.

For the news release about George’s new appointment visit:


Dear BIME Community,

It is with deep regret that we announce to the ACMI community that Dr. Fredric Wolf PhD died Sunday after a long battle with cancer.  Fred was a close friend and respected colleague to many of us, and we deeply mourn his loss.

As an academician, Fred had a long and illustrious history in both medical education and biomedical informatics. Fred was a creative, versatile, non-linear thinker and these traits are reflected in the path of his career. After 6 years in the Peace Corps in Costa Rica he returned to the US with a goal of getting an MS in education and then return to Costa Rica as a teacher. Instead he discovered a passion for medical education and quantitative research that led to lifelong interests in meta-analysis, evidence-based medicine, clinical reasoning, and decision-making.  Later in his career he became an important academic leader and program builder.

Fred’s academic career began at Ohio State University in 1980. In 1982, he moved to the University of Michigan where he directed the instructional computing facility at the medical school and later created the Laboratory for Computing, Cognition, and Clinical Skills.  As an educational researcher, he did pioneering psychometric work on the validity of patient management problems as a clinical reasoning assessment technique. His work helped establish the use of “efficiency” measures rather than “proficiency” measures as the basis for scoring performance.

Fred’s 1986 monograph on meta-analysis is widely cited and widely used as an introductory text. After a sabbatical at Oxford in 1995, he became an active participant in the Cochrane Collaboration. Several of his meta-analyses and Cochrane systematic reviews are highly cited, including reviews documenting that continuing education programs that include interactive, hands-on training are more likely to change physician practice, and that asthma self-management education and training program have positive effects on children’s and adolescent’s quality of life.

Fred’s 1985 JAMA article on heuristics and biases in clinical reasoning is cited in Jerome Groopman’s best-selling book on How Doctor’s Think as one of two articles to read “for those interested in the Bayesian approach” to decision making.  Teaming up with Chuck Friedman and Arthur Elstein, Fred was a key partner in the “Three Amigos” studies of diagnostic proficiency and computer-based clinical decision support, which resulted in several important publications in JAMIA, JAMA, and JGIM.

In 1997, Fred moved from Michigan to the University of Washington, as chair of the Department of Medical Education, which later became the Department of Medical Education and Biomedical Informatics.  In Seattle, working with Sherri Fuller, Peter Tarczy-Hornoch, Ira Kalet and others, Fred played a critical role in fostering academic Biomedical and Health Informatics at the University of Washington, guiding the department to become a nationally prominent center for research and training.  After 13 years as Department Chair, Fred stepped down in 2012 to focus on his own research and teaching which included two very popular courses on evidence based medicine, systematic reviews and meta-analysis.

Fred brought to his battle with two cancers the same energy and tenacity he brought to his academic work. Through an autologous bone marrow transplant and later an unrelated donor transplant, he successfully fought cancer for over a decade—all the while being a wonderful husband to his wife Leora and parent to his three children.

As a scholar, a leader, a battler, a husband, and a parent, Fred was and will ever remain an inspiration for all of us.


Peter Tarczy-Hornoch and Chuck Friedman