David Watts is a multitalented individual. He received his M.D. (cum laude) from the Baylor College of Medicine in 1966, and is currently in practice as a gastroenterologist and internist in an innovative style of health care delivery he calls Ideal Medicine, which emphasizes prevention, rapid access and, when necessary, accurate referral.
He is a Clinical Professor of Medicine at the University of California at San Francisco, and is a poet and Professor of Poetry and Literature at the Fromm Institute at the University of San Francisco.
Dr. Watts frequently serves as a radio and television commentator on a broad range of topics. He is an inventor having created the “Third Eye Retroscope”, an imaging device used in colonoscopy. He is an accomplished musician and finally, he is an author.
His latest book, Bedside Manners, is a collection of non-fiction stories about the practice of medicine, and was published by Random House in 2005. He has authored four books of poetry including Taking The History, published by Nightshade Press. The University of Iowa Press will publish his next book of nonfiction stories in early 2009.
He has founded "Writing the Medical Experience", a conference and workshop held each summer at Sarah Lawrence College, bringing together some of the best writers in the country. With his wife, he has produced the video series "Healing Words", which explores the use of poetry in a medical setting, the first episode of which airs on PBS in July, 2008.
Dr. Watts lecture, entitled "Navigating the Art of Medicine", will be an exploration into the improvisational style required to add the artistic, humanistic touch to the practice of science-based medicine. No doubt he will draw from his experience as a storyteller to make his points.