Washington University School of Medicine

Last updated
Washington University
School of Medicine
WUSTL Medicine.png
Type Private
Parent institution
Washington University in St. Louis
Dean David Perlmutter, MD
Academic staff
including 605 MD (183 MD/PhD)
267 OT, 278 PT
Location, ,
United States
Campus Urban
Website medicine.wustl.edu

BJC Institute of Health on the Washington University School of Medicine campus Washington University School of Medicine2.jpg
BJC Institute of Health on the Washington University School of Medicine campus

Washington University School of Medicine (WUSM) is the medical school of Washington University in St. Louis in St. Louis, Missouri. Founded in 1891, the School of Medicine has 1,260 students, 604 of which are pursuing a medical degree with or without a combined Doctor of Philosophy or other advanced degree. It also offers doctorate degrees in biomedical research through the Division of Biology and Biological Sciences. The School has developed large physical therapy (273 students) and occupational therapy (233 students) programs, as well as the Program in Audiology and Communication Sciences (100 students) which includes a Doctor of Audiology (Au.D.) degree and a Master of Science in Deaf Education (M.S.D.E.) degree. [1] There are 1,772 faculty, 1,022 residents, and 765 fellows.[ citation needed ]

A medical school is a tertiary educational institution, or part of such an institution, that teaches medicine, and awards a professional degree for physicians and surgeons. Such medical degrees include the Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery, Doctor of Medicine (MD), or Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO). Many medical schools offer additional degrees, such as a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D), Master's degree (M.Sc), a physician assistant program, or other post-secondary education.

Washington University in St. Louis university in St. Louis, Missouri, United States

Washington University in St. Louis is a private research university in St. Louis, Missouri. Founded in 1853, and named after George Washington, the university has students and faculty from all 50 U.S. states and more than 120 countries. As of 2017, 24 Nobel laureates in economics, physiology and medicine, chemistry, and physics have been affiliated with Washington University, nine having done the major part of their pioneering research at the university.

Doctor of Medicine is a medical degree, the meaning of which varies between different jurisdictions. In the United States, Canada and some other countries, the M.D. denotes a professional graduate degree awarded upon graduation from medical school. In the United States, this generally arose because many in 18th century medical professions trained in Scotland, which used the M.D. degree nomenclature. In England, however, Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery was used and eventually in the 19th century became the standard in Scotland too. Thus, in the United Kingdom, Ireland and other countries, the M.D. is a research doctorate, higher doctorate, honorary doctorate or applied clinical degree restricted to those who already hold a professional degree in medicine; in those countries, the equivalent professional to the North American and some others use of M.D. is still typically titled Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery (M.B.B.S.).


The clinical service is provided by Washington University Physicians, a comprehensive medical and surgical practice providing treatment in more than 75 medical specialties. Washington University Physicians are the medical staffs of the two teaching hospitals - Barnes-Jewish Hospital and St. Louis Children's Hospital. They also provide inpatient and outpatient care at the St. Louis Veteran's Administration Hospital, hospitals in the BJC HealthCare system and 35 other office locations throughout the greater St Louis region.

Barnes-Jewish Hospital Hospital in Missouri, USA

Barnes-Jewish Hospital is the largest hospital in the U.S. state of Missouri. Located in the Central West End neighborhood of St. Louis, it is the adult teaching hospital for the Washington University School of Medicine and a major component of the Washington University Medical Center. In 2018, Barnes-Jewish was named one of the top twenty hospitals in the United States by U.S. News & World Report in its annual ranking.

St. Louis Childrens Hospital Hospital in Missouri, United States

St. Louis Children's Hospital is a dedicated pediatric hospital in St. Louis, Missouri, and has a primary service region covering six states. As the pediatric teaching hospital for Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis Children's Hospital offers nationally recognized programs for physician training and research. The hospital has 390 licensed beds, 3,334 employees, 818 physician staff members, and 1,300 auxiliary members and volunteers.

Veterans Health Administration Health service for former United States military personnel

The Veterans Health Administration (VHA) is the component of the United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) led by the Under Secretary of Veterans Affairs for Health that implements the healthcare program of the VA through the administration and operation of numerous VA Medical Centers (VAMC), Outpatient Clinics (OPC), Community Based Outpatient Clinics (CBOC), and VA Community Living Centers Programs.

U.S. News and World Report ranks the college high; [2] the school is currently ranked 6th for research [3] and has been ranked as high as 2nd in 2003 and 2004, [4] It has been listed among the top ten medical schools since rankings were first published in 1987. The school ranks first in the nation in student selectivity. [5]


17 Nobel laureates have been associated with the School of Medicine. 12 faculty members are fellows of the National Academy of Sciences; 30 belong to the Institute of Medicine. 92 faculty members hold individual career development awards from the National Institutes of Health (NIH). 59 faculty members hold career development awards from non-federal agencies. 14 faculty members have MERIT status, a special recognition given by the National Institutes of Health that provides long-term, uninterrupted financial support to investigators. 6 faculty members are Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigators.

National Academy of Sciences science branch of the United States National Academies

The National Academy of Sciences (NAS) is a United States nonprofit, non-governmental organization. NAS is part of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, along with the National Academy of Engineering (NAE) and the National Academy of Medicine (NAM).

National Institutes of Health Medical research organization in the United States

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is the primary agency of the United States government responsible for biomedical and public health research. It was founded in the late 1870s, and is now part of the United States Department of Health and Human Services. The majority of NIH facilities are located in Bethesda, Maryland. The NIH conducts its own scientific research through its Intramural Research Program (IRP) and provides major biomedical research funding to non-NIH research facilities through its Extramural Research Program.

The Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) is an American non-profit medical research organization based in Chevy Chase, Maryland. It was founded by the American businessman Howard Hughes in 1953. It is one of the largest private funding organizations for biological and medical research in the United States. HHMI spends about $1 million per HHMI Investigator per year, which amounts to annual investment in biomedical research of about $825 million.


Medical classes were first held at Washington University in 1891 after the St. Louis Medical College decided to affiliate with the University, establishing a Medical Department. Robert S. Brookings, a University benefactor from its earliest days, devoted much of his work and philanthropy to Washington University, and made the improvement of the Medical Department one of his primary objectives. This especially became a cause for concern after an early 1900s Carnegie Foundation report derided the organization and quality of the Medical Department. [6]

Robert S. Brookings American businessman

Robert Somers Brookings was an American businessman and philanthropist, known for his involvement with Washington University in St. Louis and his founding of the Brookings Institution.

Carnegie Corporation of New York United States trust

The Carnegie Corporation of New York is a philanthropic fund established by Andrew Carnegie in 1911 to support education programs across the United States, and later the world. Carnegie Corporation has endowed or otherwise helped to establish institutions that include the United States National Research Council, what was then the Russian Research Center at Harvard University, the Carnegie libraries and the Children's Television Workshop. It also for many years generously funded Carnegie's other philanthropic organizations, the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace (CEIP), the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching (CFAT), and the Carnegie Institution for Science (CIS).

Following a trend in medical education across the country, research and the creation of new knowledge became a stated objective in a 1906 course catalog for the medical department. For Brookings and the University, incorporating the Medical Department into a separate School of Medicine seemed to be the next logical step. This process began in 1914 when facilities were permanently moved to their current location in St. Louis's Central West End neighborhood in 1914, and was completed in 1918 with the official naming of the School of Medicine. [7] The first female faculty member seems to have been biochemist and physiologist Ethel Ronzoni Bishop, who became an assistant professor in 1923. [8]

Ethel Ronzoni Bishop American biochemist

Ethel Ronzoni Bishop was an American biochemist and physiologist.

The Medical School began its escalation from regional renown in the 1940s, a decade when two Nobel Prizes were awarded, in 1944 and 1947, to groups of faculty members. In 1950, a Cancer Research Building was completed, being the first major new building addition to the School of Medicine since its relocation in 1914. More buildings were added in that decade, and in the 1960s the School of Medicine focused on diversifying its student body by graduating its first African-American student and substantially increasing the percentage of graduating students who are female to nearly 50%. [7]


Barnes-Jewish Hospital, which is affiliated with the Medical School Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St Louis.jpg
Barnes-Jewish Hospital, which is affiliated with the Medical School

Washington University Medical Center comprises 164 acres (0.5 km²) spread over approximately 17 city blocks, located along the eastern edge of Forest Park within the Central West End neighborhood of St. Louis. Barnes-Jewish Hospital and St. Louis Children's Hospital, part of BJC HealthCare, the teaching hospitals affiliated with the School of Medicine, are also located within the medical complex. Many of the buildings are connected via a series of sky bridges and corridors. As of 2008, the School of Medicine occupies over 4,500,000 square feet (420,000 m2) in the entire medical complex. [9]

Washington University and BJC HealthCare have taken on many joint venture projects since their original collaboration in the 1910s. The Center for Advanced Medicine, completed in December 2001, is one such collaboration, which houses the Alvin J. Siteman Cancer Center. At 650,000 square feet (60,000 m2), it is one of the largest single buildings in the Medical Complex. [10]

In the expansive Medical Complex are several especially large buildings. Recently completed is the 700,000-square-foot (65,000 m2) BJC Institutes of Health, of which Washington University's Medical School will occupy several floors. It is the largest building constructed on Washington University's campus. Called the BJC Institute of Health at Washington University, it will house the University's BioMed 21 Research Initiative, five interdisciplinary research centers, laboratories, and additional space for The Genome Center. [11]

Prominent buildings, centers, and spaces at the medical campus includes Barnes-Jewish Hospital, the Central Institute for the Deaf, St. Louis Children's Hospital, Rehabilitation Institute of Saint Louis, Siteman Cancer Center, Center for Advanced Medicine, Charles F. Knight Emergency and Trauma Center, and the Eric P. Newman Education Center.

The Medical Complex is accessible via the Central West End MetroLink station, which provides transportation to the rest of Washington University's campuses.

Nobel laureates

Physiology or Medicine


Notable alumni

Other associated hospitals

See also

Related Research Articles

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Stanley Cohen (biochemist) American biochemist

Stanley Cohen is an American biochemist who, along with Rita Levi-Montalcini, was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1986 for the isolation of nerve growth factor and the discovery of epidermal growth factor.

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Imperial College School of Medicine

Imperial College School of Medicine (ICSM) is the medical school of Imperial College London in England, and one of the United Hospitals. It was formed by the merger of several historic medical schools, and has core campuses at South Kensington, St Mary's Hospital, London, Charing Cross Hospital, Hammersmith Hospital and Chelsea and Westminster Hospital. The school ranked 4th in the world for medicine in the 2018 Times Higher Education World University Rankings.

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David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA medical school

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BJC HealthCare is a non-profit health care organization based in St. Louis, Missouri. BJC includes two nationally recognized academic hospitals – Barnes–Jewish Hospital and St. Louis Children's Hospital, which are both affiliated with the Washington University School of Medicine.

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The Alvin J. Siteman Cancer Center at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine is a cancer treatment, research and education institution with six locations in the St. Louis area. Siteman is the only cancer center in Missouri and within 240 miles of St. Louis to be designated a Comprehensive Cancer Center by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). Siteman is also the only area member of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network, a nonprofit alliance of 28 cancer centers dedicated to improving the quality and effectiveness of cancer care.


  1. "Programs". pacs.wustl.edu. Washington University in St. Louis. Retrieved November 11, 2011.
  2. "Best Graduate Schools | Top Graduate Programs | US News Education". Grad-schools.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com. Retrieved March 13, 2013.
  3. "Best Medical Schools: Research". U.S. News. Retrieved August 7, 2012.
  4. "Historical Medical School Research Rankings" (PDF). U.S. News. Retrieved March 17, 2013.
  5. "FACTS – Washington University School of Medicine". Medicine.wustl.edu. June 30, 2011. Retrieved March 13, 2013.
  6. "Medical Campus Tour". Historical Campus Tour: School of Medicine .External link in |work= (help)
  7. 1 2 Anderson, Paul; Marion Hunt. "Origins and History of the Washington University School of Medicine". Washington University Medical School, Bernard Becker Medical Library. Retrieved July 22, 2008.
  8. "Ethel Bishop Ronzoni" (PDF). Washington University. Archived from the original (PDF) on June 5, 2010. Retrieved May 6, 2012.
  9. "Facilities". School of Medicine .External link in |work= (help)
  10. "Washington University Medical Center". Washington University School of Medicine: Department of Neurology .External link in |work= (help)
  11. Ericson, Gwen (October 30, 2007). "Immense new facility to house BioMed 21 research at Washington University Medical Center". Medical Public Affairs .External link in |work= (help)
  12. http://beckerexhibits.wustl.edu/mowihsp/bios/levi_montalcini.htm WUSM's Becker Library Biography of Rita Levi-Montalcini
  13. "Ernst Wynder, 77, a Cancer Researcher, Dies" . Retrieved February 14, 2013.

Coordinates: 38°38′13″N90°15′53″W / 38.6370°N 90.2646°W / 38.6370; -90.2646