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Joseph J. Zorc, MD, MSCE
Joseph J. Zorc
Attending Physician

Dr. Zorc's work focuses on the intersection of interventional clinical research, quality improvement (QI), and clinical informatics. He has formal certification in epidemiology, QI methodology, and clinical informatics, and has participated in multi-center research networks, guideline and improvement collaboratives, and electronic health record development locally and nationally.



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Dr. Zorc is a pediatric emergency medicine (PEM) physician with a career focused at the intersection of interventional clinical research, quality improvement, and clinical informatics.

During his career as a faculty member, Dr. Zorc has developed systems to conduct prospective research in the emergency department and has completed multiple clinical trials evaluating treatment of asthma, bronchiolitis, and other conditions. He has also been active in multi-center clinical research conducted through the federally-funded Pediatric Emergency Care Applied Research Network (PECARN) and the PEM section of the American Academy of Pediatrics.

In addition, Dr. Zorc received formal training in quality improvement methodology and has played a key role in the development of Children's Hospital of Philadelphia's Clinical Pathways Program. He's developed expertise in clinical informatics including subspecialty board certification and has participated in local and national roles that focus on use of the electronic health record (EHR) as a tool to improve research and implement evidence-based findings at the bedside. He has used the EHR to implement multiple treatment protocols at CHOP that have improved quality of care and served as a foundation for pragmatic clinical trials.

Among his achievements, Dr. Zorc:

  • Served as lead co-investigator on the first clinical trial conducted by the PECARN emergency research network evaluating the efficacy of dexamethasone for bronchiolitis
  • Participated in development of CHOP's Clinical Pathways Program with multiple related presentations and awards for improvement projects and integration with the EHR
  • Co-Editor-in Chief of Pediatric Emergency Care, the leading academic journal devoted to Pediatric Emergency Medicine
  • Served as first chair of the voluntary Pediatric Emergency Medicine Steering Advisory Board for Epic, a leading EHR vendor
  • Awarded the Mark Fishman Endowed Chair at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia

Education and Training

BA, Harvard University (Biomedical Sciences), 1988

MD, Columbia University, 1992

Fellowship, Johns Hopkins Hospital (Pediatric Emergency Medicine), 1998

MSCE, University of Pennsylvania (Clinical Epidemiology), 2008

Titles and Academic Titles

Attending Physician

Director, Emergency Information System

Mark Fishman Endowed Chair in Genomics and Computational Science

Professor of Pediatrics

Professional Memberships

Academic Pediatric Association, 1997-

Society for Academic Emergency Medicine, 1999-

American Academy of Pediatrics, Fellow, 2005-

Society for Pediatric Research, 2006-

Professional Awards

Faculty Mentorship Award from PEM Fellows, Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, 2005

Best Abstract Award in Pediatric Emergency Medicine, AAP Section on Emergency Medicine, 2007

Best Quality Improvement AAP Section on Emergency Medicine, 2015

Best Abstract, Council on Clinical Information Technology, American Academy of Pediatrics, 2017

Publication Highlights

Links of Interest