Welcome to the Division of General Internal Medicine. Under the leadership of Monika Safford, M.D., our Division unifies the outpatient and inpatient internal medicine programs, bringing together more than 400 employed and voluntary faculty.
The tripartite mission of our division is to:
- Provide compassionate, comprehensive, coordinated and state of the art patient-centered care to every patient through evidence-based practice
- Educate the next generation of internal medicine physicians
- Optimize the overall health and well-being of patients and communities via collaborative research
Our multidisciplinary faculty is deeply committed to excellence and advancement in patient care via our hospital medicine and ambulatory care programs, resident and medical student education, and cutting edge research.
Our patient-centered research program focuses on optimizing the health and functioning of people living with chronic diseases like diabetes and obesity; cardiovascular disease prevention; health disparities and the care of vulnerable populations, both in the US and abroad; and clinical epidemiology with a focus on informing population health management.
Adult Internal Medicine
Under the leadership of Judy Tung, M.D., the Adult Internal Medicine program, previously known as Weill Cornell Internal Medicine Associates (WCIMA), includes over 40 exceptional academic full time members that provide high quality and comprehensive primary care for a diverse group of adult patients representing a cross section of the ethnic, cultural, and economic diversity that is New York City. This program, established as the Division of Ambulatory Medicine in 1968, has a long and distinguished history. During recent years, our ambulatory practices have expanded to various locations in the New York City area, including the Upper East Side, Lower Manhattan, and Long Island City, Queens.
Ambulatory services provided to our patients include preventive health care, treatment of acute and chronic illness, and the coordination of care for those with medical complexity. Patients at our ambulatory practices are cared for by a team of providers comprised of faculty attendings, nurse practitioners, and resident physicians in order to maximize expertise in various aspects of health care.
Patients are seen by a cadre of outstanding health care providers regardless of their insurance plan type. We serve as the primary site for general medicine ambulatory education for the Internal Medicine Residency training program.
Under the leadership of Arthur Evans, M.D., the inpatient program has grown rapidly since its inception as the Division of Hospital Medicine in 2009. Today, this program includes over 70 exceptional faculty members from around the country. All faculty are board certified in internal medicine and many have additional training and subspecialty expertise, including infectious disease, emergency medicine, nephrology, critical care, medical informatics, pain management, quality improvement, and clinical research.
On any given day, our faculty provides care for over 200 inpatients at both the East and Lower Manhattan NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell campuses. Our physicians are responsible for the General Medicine Housestaff Service, the Medicine Consult Service, the Medicine-Orthopedics Trauma Service, and they oversee the Medicine-Physician Assistants Service.
Integrative Health and Wellbeing
Under the leadership of Alka Gupta, M.D. and Chiti Parikh, M.D., the Integrative Health and Wellbeing Program was launched in the Spring of 2016. The program provides patient care centered on prevention, lifestyle medicine, and wellness. An integrative approach can also help to treat chronic disease and to manage symptoms related to illness.
We currently offer one-on-one nutritional counseling, mindfulness and meditation teaching, yoga therapy, pilates instruction, acupuncture, and massage therapy. We also offer group classes throughout the week, including yoga, mindfulness meditation, cardio, and pilates classes, among others. For more information, visit www.nyp.org/integrativehealth.
Heart Failure with Preserved Ejection Fraction (HFpEF)
The Heart Failure with Preserved Ejection Fraction program, the first of its kind in New York, is led from Parag Goyal, M.D., MSc., an advanced heart failure physician and geriatric cardiologist. The program’s main goals are to ensure an accurate diagnosis of HFpEF, develop an optimal care plan, offer access to newest therapies, provide education and help patients take control of their care. For more information on the program and its services, view the HFpEF brochure.
Quality Improvement Academy (QIA)
The Quality Improvement Academy (QIA), led by Jennifer Inhae Lee, M.D., aims to achieve a higher standard of quality improvement (QI) and patient safety knowledge and expertise by developing faculty members into effective leaders in clinical excellence through healthcare systems improvement. The one-year program, which began within the Weill Department of Medicine in 2016, is designed for physician faculty at the instructor and assistant professor level who are passionate and committed to becoming strategically vital leaders in interdisciplinary process improvement, education and mentorship, and accomplishing academic productivity through scholarship in QI, therefore facilitating academic advancement. In addition to faculty scholarship, the program directly engages medical students, residents, fellows, and nurses, as core project team members. This broad, interdisciplinary involvement helps departments meet their needs for fulfilling requirements for both the ACGME Clinical Learning Environment Review (CLER) program and continues to play a significant role in our institution’s efforts to maintain Magnet status in the areas of nurse-physician research collaboration and nursing clinical autonomy. In addition, QIA provides the much-needed opportunity for departments to support the transition from quality assurance to quality improvement, an area that has lacked support and attention in the past. All projects selected are those deemed by the program’s interdepartmental leadership committee to have a direct impact on the quality and safety of patient care in areas that are of importance to each applicant’s department as well as the institution. Since the inception of the program, the Department of Medicine has enrolled 21 physicians and nurses in the Quality Improvement Academy. Given its success and high demand, the program was expanded in 2018 to include physicians and nurses across all departments at NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medicine.
Primary Care Innovation
Under the leadership of Fred Pelzman, M.D. and Monika Safford, M.D., the Primary Care Innovation (PCI) program, established in 2016, facilitates a virtual and physical site for innovation and experimentation in primary care. Through support and inspiration, the program helps model and mold the next generation of primary care clinicians, educators and researchers. The program’s mission is to unite all the varied components needed for change in our fractured healthcare system. PCI aims to serve as a laboratory for innovation and change. By investing time, the clinicians, educators and researchers of WCIMA and partners can achieve the program’s main goal: to inspire the next generation of medical students in the field of primary care. PCI will guide Internal Medicine residents to choose primary care by creating high quality practice settings, providing opportunities to participate in meaningful research and inspiring viable future careers in a new model of healthcare. The program also support and mentors junior faculty in their careers today and expand the way they practice medicine tomorrow. To learn more about the program, visit careinnovation.weill.cornell.edu.
Cornell Center for Health Equity (CCHEq)
Several Members of the Division of General Internal Medicine are intimately involved in the activities of the Cornell Center for Health Equity, a university-wide initiative bridging Cornell’s New York City and Ithaca campuses to respond directly to the growing need to better understand both the root causes and the manifestations (symptoms) of persistent health inequity. With a robust research agenda and through academic-community partnerships, the Center, founded by Monika Safford, M.D. and co-led by Monika Safford, M.D. and Avery August, Ph.D., advances the science of health equity and takes steps to share knowledge in order to make quantifiable progress and to reduce persistent health disadvantages at the local, regional, and national levels.
The Center infrastructure consists of the following cores that will guide and inform all Center activities:
- Community Engagement and Dissemination Core
- Education Core
- Investigator Development Core
- Administrative Core
The Education Core’s activities at Weill Cornell are supported by a recently funded Diversity Center of Excellence award from the Health Resources and Services Administration, with the main goal of increasing the number of underrepresented minority physicians in the workforce and in academic medicine. The four-year Diversity Center of Excellence, co-led by Susana Morales, M.D., and Monika Safford, M.D., will expand pipeline programs from middle school through undergraduates; enhance support for underrepresented minority medical students and trainees; expand faculty development to enhance hiring and retention of underrepresented minority faculty; and generate new knowledge on how to achieve health equity. To learn more about the Center, visit centerforhealthequity.cornell.edu.
Patient Activated Learning System (PALS)
The patient activated learning system is a publicly available resource designed to provide engaging, easily understood, well-researched facts for people who want to know more about health, medicines, and diseases. The PALS, which was architected by Monika Safford, M.D., draws on several established paradigms:
- Adult Learning Theory – adult learners want focused information at the time they need it.
- Social Cognitive Theory – humans learn by watching what others do.
- Bartle’s Taxonomy – the multi-billion dollar online gaming industry uses 4 basic player types (achievers, “killers”, explorers, socializers) which are incorporated into the PALS.
- Storytelling – because humans remember more in the context of a story.
The PALS uses Reusable Knowledge Objects (RKOs), which consist of a patient-derived question, a single learning objective, a well-researched answer translated into patient facing text at the 6th grade level, and an assessment question testing whether the learning objective has been met. For more information, visit palsforhealth.com.