Jeffrey Borkan, MD, PhD
Professor of Family Medicine
Work: +1 401-729-2238
Jeffrey Borkan has research interests in qualitative research and mixed qualitative-quantitative studies; doctor-patient communication and narratives; low-back pain in primary care; public participation in health policy decisions, such as rationing; and medical education.
BiographyDr. Borkan joined the Department of Family Medicine at Brown Medical School as Professor (Research) and Chair in 2001. He is a family physician researcher, educator, clinician, and advocate whose career has bridged two fields (family medicine and medical anthropology), both in the US and abroad (Israel & Tonga). Since medical school, he has been active in family medicine research, as well as being a practicing family physician and resident/student educator. For six years, he was the Coordinator of a national practice based research network and served as the Director of Research in a family medicine department for a decade. Concurrently, he managed the medical services of an isolated desert region in southern Israel, later joining a model teaching practice in the Galilee. He came to Brown after having been the Vice Chair of Behavioral Science at Tel Aviv University, coordinating a major humanistic curriculum reform there. Though most of his research utilizes qualitative methods, he is active in mixed methods research, and has also published quantitative, epidemiologic, and even health-related entomological studies. Most investigations have focused on low back pain, medical education, health policy, and common problems in primary care. At Brown, Dr. Borkan has spearheaded the growth of the Department of Family Medicine, has been active in Rhode Island health policy, and has been President of national Association of Departments of Family Medicine (2009-10). He has been active in education at the Medical School, leading the first committee charged with designing the Doctoring Program, and currently Chairs the MD Curriculum Committee and the Sub-Committee on Scholarly Concentrations.
Research DescriptionJeffrey Borkan has research interests in qualitative research and mixed qualitative-quantitative studies; doctor-patient communication and narratives; low-back pain in primary care; public participation in health policy decisions, such as rationing; and medical education. He is a family physician educator, researcher, clinician, and administrator whose career has spanned two fields (family medicine and medical anthropology) and two countries (the United States and Israel). He comes to Memorial Hospital of Rhode Island and Brown Medical School after having been the Vice Chair of Behavioral Science at Tel Aviv University, Sackler Faculty of Medicine, coordinating a major humanistic curriculum reform there. Throughout his career, he has been active in family medicine research, as well as being a practicing family physician and resident/student trainer. He managed the medical services of an isolated desert region in southern Israel for ten years, later joining a model teaching practice in the Galilee. Previously and while abroad, he was a faculty member at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center, Department of Family and Community Medicine. Dr. Borkan has been a visiting scholar at Harvard (1997-1998) and a visiting faculty member in the Departments of Family Medicine at the University of Connecticut, University of Washington, and Penn State. Dr. Borkan's research includes the physician-patient relationship, health policy, low back pain, and storytelling in medicine. He has frequently worked and conducted research among minorities and the underserved, both in the United States, Israel, and the Pacific Island of Tonga.
Grants and AwardsBest Research Project by a Medical Student, North American Primary Care Research Group (NAPCRG), 1982
Fulbright/ITT, International Fellowship, 1982-1983
American Academy of Family PhysiciansMead Johnson Award for Family Practice Residents, 1986
American Academy of Family PhysiciansParke-Davis Teacher Development Award, 1988
Creative Writing award, First Place, Society of Teachers of Family Medicine Education Consortium, 2002
Honorary Degree, Brown University, 2003
Governor's Honorary Citation for Service (Rhode Island) 2008
AffiliationsAmerican Association of Medical Colleges
American Association of Family Practice
Association of Departments of Family Medicine
Washington State Association of Family Practice
Massachusetts Association of Family Practice
Society of Teachers of Family Medicine
Israeli Association of Family Practice
American Association of Anthropologists
Israeli Anthropological Association
General Practice Writers Association
Israeli Family Practice Research Network
North American Primary Care Research Group
European General Practice Research Workshop
Israel Association of Medical Education
World Organization of Family Doctors
Funded Research2002-2007 Co-Investigator: "Translating ATPIII Cholesterol Management Guidelines into Primary Care Practice". National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute-National Institutes of Health (NHLBI-NIH).
2003-2006 Co-Investigator: "Assisting Primary Care Physicians Towards Improved Doctor-Patient Communications in the New Context Engendered by the National Health Insurance Law and Patients' Rights Act". The Israel National Institute for Health Policy and Health Services Research (NIHP).
2004-2007 Principle Investigator: "Academic Administrative Units in Primary Care". Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Service Administration (HRSA).
Narrative Medicine, Doctoring, Scholarly Concentrations (Chair)
- Allegretti A, Borkan JM, Reis S, Griffith F. Paired Interviews of Shared Experiences around Chronic Low Back Pain: Classic Mismatch between Patients and their Doctors. Family Practice (Oxford). 2010 (in press). (2010)
- Reis SP, Wald HS, Monroe AD, Borkan JM. Begin the BEGAN (The Brown Educational Guide to the Analysis of Narrative) a framework for enhancing educational impact of faculty feedback to students' reflective writing. Patient Educ Couns. 2010; (Epub ahead of print). (2010)
- Diaz JA, Goldman R, Arellano N, Borkan J, Eaton CB. Brief report: exploration of colorectal cancer risk perceptions among Latinos. J Immigr Minor Health. 2010; (Epub ahead of print). (2010)
- Tabenkin H, Eaton CB, Roberts MB, Parker DR, McMurray JH, Borkan J. Differences in cardiovascular disease risk factor management in primary care by sex of physician and patient. Ann Fam Med. 2010;8(1):25-32. (2010)
- Boninger M, Troen P, Green E, Borkan J, Lance-Jones C, Humphrey A, Gruppuso P, Kant P, McGee J, Willochell M, Schor N, Kanter SL, Levine AS. Implementation of a longitudinal mentored scholarly project: an approach at two medical schools. Acad Med. 2010;85(3):429-437. (2010)
- Green EP, Borkan JM, Pross SH, Adler SR, Nothnagle M, Parsonnet J, Gruppuso PA. Encouraging scholarship: medical school programs to promote student inquiry beyond the traditional medical curriculum. Acad Med. 2010;85(3):409-418. (2010)
- Wald HS, Reis SP, Monroe AD, Borkan JM. The loss of my elderly patients: interactive reflective writing to support medical students' rites of passage. Medical Teacher. 2010;32:e178-184. (2010)
- Wald HS, Reis SP, Borkan JM. Reflection rubric development: evaluating medical students' reflective writing. Med Educ. 2009;43(11):1110-1111. (2009)
- Borkan J, Feldmann E, Dollase R, Gruppuso PA. Redesigning the clinical curriculum at the Warren Alpert Medical school of Brown University. Med Health RI. 2009;92(9):300-302. (2009)
- Reis S, Borkan JM, Weingarten M. The current state of basic medical education in Israel: implications for a new medical school. Med Teach. 2009;31(11):984-989. (2009)
- Wald HS, Davis SW, Reis SP, Monroe AD, Borkan JM. Reflecting on reflections: enhancement of medical education curriculum with structured field notes and guided feedback. Acad Med. 2009;84(7):830-837. (2009)
- Eaton CB, Parker DR, Craft J, McMurray J, Roberts MB, Borkan J, Goldman RE, Ahern DK. Using e-health to improve cholesterol management in primary care practice. J Med Pract Manage, 2009;24(4):224-230. (2009)
- Publications 2009-2010 (2009)
- Cherkin D, Kovacs FM, Croft P, Borkan J, Foster NE, Oberg B, Urrutia G, Zaore J. The ninth international forum for primary care research on low back pain. Spine, 2009;34(3):304-307. (2009)