About Us

Welcome to the Virginia Commonwealth University Department of Internal Medicine. We are located on the MCV Campus in downtown Richmond.

The VCU Health System is an urban, comprehensive academic medical center in central Virginia established to preserve and restore health for all people, to seek the cause and cure of diseases through innovative research, and to educate those who serve humanity.

In 2015, VCU Medical Center was again rated #1 in Virginia by U.S. News & World Report. The department’s educational ranking places it in the top 25 percent of medical education programs in the U.S. With complete faculty oversight, the residency training program is unique as a resident-directed program that affords maximal growth, responsibility and autonomy to trainees.

The department has been a cornerstone of the School of Medicine with its origins dating back to 1838. The VCU School of Medicine began as the medical department of Hampden-Sydney College, which became the Medical College of Virginia, an independent institution in 1854. State support and affiliation began in 1860. In 1968, the Medical College of Virginia and Richmond Professional Institute merged to become Virginia Commonwealth University.

VCU’s Department of Internal Medicine consists of more than 180 full-time physician faculty, 124 residents in training, and 86 fellows in subspecialty training. These physicians serve across the department’s ten divisions:

In addition to the chair, the department leadership includes the vice chair (Todd Gehr, M.D.); and five associate chairs (Education: Stephanie Call, M.D.; Clinical Operations: J. Christian Barrett, M.D.; Research: Shoba Ghosh, Ph.D.; Outpatient Services: Lisa Brath, M.D.; Faculty Development: Elizabeth Ripley, M.D.) who work closely with the School of Medicine, MCV Physicians and MCV Hospitals – the principal clinical components of the VCU Health System – to advance the department in each of its core missions.

Faculty members of the department include leaders in professional societies, members of the American Association of Physicians and American Society for Clinical Investigation, and many who are rated as Top Doctors in Richmond and America’s Best Doctors. The department leads the School of Medicine in faculty who have been recognized with university-wide and School of Medicine awards for teaching, research and clinical excellence.

Research is very strong in the department with investigations in both the basic and clinical sciences, as well as health services research. Current annual research expenditures exceed $18.4 million, and the department was ranked 48th nationally in NIH funding in 2012. The faculty is actively involved in multidisciplinary research and education efforts through four distinct institutes and VCU’s NIH-funded Center for Clinical and Translational Research, and the department has 29 endowed professorships.

The VCU Health System, combined with the five VCU health sciences schools (Allied Health Professions, Dentistry, Medicine, Nursing and Pharmacy), comprise the VCU Medical Center. With the resources of the VCU Medical Center, the Department of Internal Medicine is optimally poised to excel in all its missions. The VCU Medical Center provides medical care for a large portion of the indigent population of central Virginia and the commonwealth, while also serving as a tertiary and quaternary referral center for the Mid-Atlantic region extending from the Washington, D.C. metro area south into North Carolina and west into West Virginia. The VCU Medical Center is the only Level 1 trauma center and comprehensive burn center in central Virginia.

VCU has championed an aggressive and impressive development of laboratory facilities, including the NCI-designated Massey Cancer Center and its Goodwin Research Laboratory; the Molecular Medicine Research Building; andHermes Kontos Medical Science Building. In 2013, the new 200,000 square foot McGlothlin Medical Education Center opened. Designed by renowned architect, I.M. Pei, this new School of Medicine facility provides modern classrooms, state-of-the-art laboratories and dedicated floors designed and equipped for advanced simulation teaching and training.

I invite you to learn more about us by perusing this website.

Sincerely,
John E. Nestler, M.D.
William Branch Porter Professor of Medicine

Chair, Department of Internal Medicine