Sociology’s Bosk Elected to Institute of Medicine

November 4, 2013

Professor of Sociology Charles L. Bosk has been elected a member of the Institute of Medicine (IOM), one of the nation's highest honors in biomedicine. He is one of very few of the IOM’s 1,753 members to hold a primary appointment in a school of arts and sciences.

Bosk is a medical ethnographer whose first book, Forgive and Remember: Managing Medical Failure, is a seminal work in sociology and medicine and is often required reading for surgical residents. His numerous publications also include All God's Mistakes: Genetics Counseling in a Pediatric Hospital and What Would You Do? Juggling Bioethics and Ethnography.

His research areas are medical sociology and the professionalization, deviance, and social control and field methods of research. His current projects focus on the ethics of research and on medical mistakes in the guise of patient safety.

After receiving a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Investigator Award for his project “Restarting a Stalled Policy Revolution: Patient Safety, Systems Error, and Professional Responsibility,” Bosk has become an authoritative voice in academic and policy debates about professionalism and patient safety. His wide-ranging influence has been acknowledged in his appointments to the Hastings Center Panel on the Ethics of Patient Safety, the Hastings Center Task Force on Ethics and Effectiveness in Total Quality Improvement, the American Society of Bioethics and Humanities Taskforce on Guidelines and Standards in Clinical Ethics, and as a visiting professor at various medical schools.  

Bosk is also a professor of anesthesiology and critical care in the Perelman School of Medicine and a senior fellow of the Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics.

Election to the IOM recognizes individuals who have demonstrated outstanding professional achievement and commitment to service. Established in 1970 by the National Academy of Sciences, IOM has become recognized as a national resource for independent, scientifically informed analysis and recommendations on health issues. With their election, members make a commitment to volunteer their service on IOM committees, boards, and other activities.