Department of Internal Medicine

Training in all settings, serving for all needs.

A Welcome from the Department Chair

Welcome to the Department of Internal Medicine at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas School of Medicine. We are committed to excellence in all three missions of academic medicine - patient care, education, and research. Within a very short time, our department has experienced significant growth - and we are entirely committed to maintaining this steep upward trajectory over the coming years.

One of our key goals is to provide state-of-the-art health care to the residents of Southern Nevada. The University Medical Center is a major tertiary care center in the Las Vegas region catering to more than 2.5 million people in the greater metropolitan area and the adjoining counties. UNLV physicians deliver the highest standards of patient care in both General Internal Medicine and various subspecialties, including Gastroenterology, Cardiovascular Medicine, Endocrinology, Pulmonary and Critical Care, and other disciplines.

Providing an excellent learning experience to our trainees is one of our top priorities. Our teaching efforts are continuously evaluated and improved. In addition to Dr. Sandhya Wahi-Gururaj, who has served for many years as the Program Director for our Internal Medicine Residency program, we have several enthusiastic and dedicated Associate Program Directors to formulate and enhance resident training in specific areas in the ever-changing frontiers of Internal Medicine education. Subspecialty fellowships are offered in Gastroenterology, Cardiovascular Medicine, and Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine. Fellowship training in Critical Care Medicine alone will also begin in 2019. A carefully structured educational conference series serves as the primary vehicle for didactic teaching for residents. Lectures by invited speakers also enhance the understanding of complex disease processes and their treatment approaches.

Our research efforts are driven by the passion for discovery and the need of innovative therapies for patients. The newly-initiated basic research program will play a major role in this process and serve as a quintessential bridge to bring clinicians and basic scientists together, promoting translation. The major areas of current research include cardiac repair with adult stem cells, protection against heart attacks, and atrial fibrillation. We strive incessantly to promote participation in research by our residents, fellows, and faculty that may result in presentations, publications, and funded clinical trials. The multicenter clinical trials also provide the opportunity for patients to utilize experimental therapies and devices that are otherwise unavailable in the Las Vegas region, or in the state of Nevada.

This is only the beginning. We are constantly developing new plans for the expansion of patient care services, training future leaders in medicine and building innovative research programs. In the coming years, we aspire to elevate our department to unprecedented heights in patients care, education, and research through our unwavering commitment to excellence, innovation, quality, and professionalism.

Thank you for visiting, and we hope you will join us in our efforts to grow academic medicine in Southern Nevada!

Department Overview

We welcome you to learn more about the most established internal medicine training program in Las Vegas, Nevada. The former University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine Las Vegas Internal Medicine Residency Program started in 1979. The training program is highly successful in developing proficient physicians who embrace their role and the duty to put their patients first. The medium size of our program fosters a supportive learning environment with frequent direct interaction with faculty. Collegiality amongst the residents and with the faculty is one of our major strengths. To learn more about the culture of our program, please click here.

We were accredited for 10 years by the ACGME at our most recent site visit.

Las Vegas is truly a fabulous city with more depth than one imagines based on first impressions. In addition to a robust dining and an entertainment capital, residents are able to enjoy the great outdoors in a growing medical environment. Read more about living in Las Vegas.

Mission Statement

Training in all settings, serving for all needs.

  • Diverse patient population
  • Care of the underserved
  • High value patient care
  • Preparation for any environment — practice of general internal medicine or subspecialty training
  • A culture that trains physicians while promoting the health and well being of the patient and provider
  • Collaboration and camaraderie as keys to success
  • Emotionally competent physicians
  • Coaching for growth

Current Full-Time Faculty Divisions

Current full-time faculty divisions include Gastroenterology, General Internal Medicine, Endocrinology, and Pulmonary/Critical Care Medicine. We partner with physicians at the VA and throughout our community to round out the educational experiences. The residency leadership team is comprised of the program director, Sandhya Wahi-Gururaj, M.D., MPH, associate program directors, Aditi Singh, M.D. and John Varras, M.D., residency coordinators, and three chief residents.

Faculty

UNLV Faculty

I think the greatest strengths of our program when I did residency was – 1. Being a medium-sized program where everyone knew everyone and the work environment was very friendly. 2. Residents had a strong sub-specialty exposure. 3. Program leadership was very supportive and helped with career advancement. 4. Excellent rapport with co-residents both at work and outside.

Srinath Sundararajan, MD, Class of 2012, Hematology/Oncology, University of Arizona

Training Sites

Outside view of the UMC building at night

University Medical Center (UMC)

University Medical Center (UMC) is the publicly funded hospital for Clark County and the city of Las Vegas. At UMC, residents have the opportunity to care for a diverse patient population that includes individuals from southern Nevada and all over the world. This clinical experience affords residents the opportunity to manage a wide-array of pathologic conditions.

  • Full-time faculty of the school of medicine staffs the general medicine service.
  • The full-time medical school faculty and adjunct community subspecialty faculty teach the subspecialty rotations.
Outside view of the VA Southern Nevada Healthcare System building

VA Southern Nevada Healthcare System (VA)

The VA Southern Nevada Healthcare System (VA) offers residents the opportunity to care for the nation's veterans and contribute to the VA's mission of providing exceptional health care that improves veterans' health and well-being.

  • Residents will rotate on the inpatient general medicine service and have the opportunity to rotate through subspecialty rotations at the VA.
Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health

Community Partnerships

Some subspecialty rotations occur in a community practice setting to allow residents to become familiar with physicians in our community and the private practice model. Partnerships also include the Nathan Adelson Hospice's inpatient unit Volunteers in Medicine of Southern Nevada, and exposure to the Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health.

Southern Nevada Health District

Southern Nevada Health District

All categorical residents rotate at the health district so they may further understand how public health departments impact their role as providers and population health.

Training in the state of the art simulation center enhances the resident experience by practicing procedures and participating in simulated codes using a high-fidelity simulator. We also incorporate the use of standardized patients to advance communication skills.

We were accredited for 10 years by the ACGME at our most recent site visit.

Las Vegas is truly a fabulous city with more depth than one imagines based on first impressions. In addition to a robust restaurant and entertainment scene, residents are able to enjoy the great outdoors in a growing medical environment.