William G. Sayres, Jr., M.D.
Smith Family Endowed Chair in Medicine
Assistant Dean, Foundations, UW School of Medicine
Dr. Sayres was educated at Amherst College, where he graduated magna cum laude as a German major. His medical education took place at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry. Starting a series of moves from the East Coast to the Rocky Mountain West, he did his post-graduate training at the University of Utah, where he was Chief Resident and stayed on as faculty for several years before moving to Spokane to work for Group Health Northwest.
Educating residents and medical students has been a core part of his practice since finishing residency. He has taught at the University of Utah and University of Washington Schools of Medicine since completing training in 1983. He was awarded the American Academy of Family Physicians Teacher Development Award in 1985.
In 2013, Dr. Sayres was recruited to develop and teach an innovative 2nd year medical curriculum to UW School of Medicine students in Spokane. This was the first occasion that 2nd year students were educated outside of Seattle. The curriculum was delivered in small groups using problem and case-based pedagogy and taught by primary care clinicians. The new UW School of Medicine Foundations curriculum is designed, at least in part, after the successes of this pilot program.
Family medicine and obstetrics has been a special interest for Dr Sayres. He most recently authored the preterm labor chapter of the Advanced Life Support in Obstetrics textbook. This manual is used internationally in preparing primary care physicians for obstetric emergencies.
Dr. Sayres was the first recipient of the Group Health Permanente Clinical Excellence award. In 2009 he was chosen Washington State Family Physician of the Year. He continues to practice the full range of outpatient and inpatient medicine, including obstetrics.
He is currently President of the Sacred Heart Medical Center Medical Executive Committee. He has held leadership positions in many organizations, from two-year captain of his college cross-country team to president of the Utah Chapter of Physicians for Social Responsibility, where he collaborated with many stakeholders to engage in a successful dialogue around US Army proposals to develop a biological weapons research facility in the Utah West Desert.
Dr. Sayres lives in Spokane with his wife, Meghan. Of their three children, one is a third year medical student at the University of Washington. He enjoys sailing in the summer and free-heel ski mountaineering in the winter.
(photo courtesy of Group Health Cooperative)
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