Duke University School of Medicine is ranked third among all medical schools in the country. One of the nation's leading institutions for medical education, clinical care and biomedical research, the school comprises more than 2,500 regular rank faculty physicians and researchers and nearly 2,000 health professions and biomedical PhD students. The School of Medicine, along with Duke University Health System, the School of Nursing, and the Private Diagnostic Clinic (PDC), create Duke Health.
Planning for the School of Medicine began nearly a century ago in 1925 when businessman James Buchanan Duke, benefactor of Duke University and The Duke Endowment, bequeathed $4 million to establish the Duke University School of Medicine, as well as the Duke University School of Nursing and Duke University Hospital. Less than five years after the school opened in 1930, the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) ranked Duke in the top quarter of medical schools in the country.
Duke University School of Medicine is led by Mary E. Klotman, M.D., Dean and Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs. Dean Klotman works with a leadership team comprising 12 vice deans, a strategic planning officer, chief diversity and a communications officer, as well as department chairs and center and institute directors. Associate and assistant deans also assist the dean with the oversight and management of the School of Medicine.
Departments, Centers, and Institutes
The Duke University School of Medicine comprises 24 clinical and basic science departments. The school’s strong emphasis on research to improve clinical outcomes encourages collaborations among faculty members, departments and other schools at the university, and has resulted in the development of numerous centers and institutes.
The Duke University School of Medicine offers a wide range of health professions education programs. These include the Doctor of Medicine program, recognized nationally for its unique patient-centered curriculum; the nation’s first Physician Assistant program; a Physical Therapy program ranked in the top 10 nationally; 16 biomedical PhD programs, and an innovative Masters in Biomedical Science, numerous other master’s degree programs, and a new Occupational Therapy Doctorate program. The School of Medicine also is home to the Medical Scientist Training Program which allows students to combine an MD degree with a PhD in the biomedical sciences in partnership with The Graduate School.
Biomedical PhD Students
11 Cell and Molecular Biology
49 Cell Biology
8 Cognitive Neuroscience
36 Computational Biology and Bioinformatics
9 Developmental and Stem Cell Biology
19 Medical Physics
29 Molecular Cancer Biology
83 Molecular Genetics and Microbiology
7 Population Health Sciences
64 University Program in Genetics and Genomics
434 Duke-NUS (Singapore)
22 Duke Kunshan University
Certificate Program Students
3 Ophthalmic Technician Certificate
9 Cardiac Ultrasound Certificate
76 Cell and Molecular Biology
57 Certificate in College Teaching
1 Computational Biology and Bioinformatics
30 Developmental & Stem Cell Biology
4 Integrated Toxicology & Environmental Health Program
1 Structural Biology and Biophysics
Graduate Medical Education Trainees
1,162 Residents and Fellows
Duke University School of Medicine is the vibrant home for the next generation of discovery. Our capacity for innovation stems from knitting together our existing strengths in fundamental basic science and deepening our growing translational capabilities, our integration with Duke’s national recognized clinical enterprise, and our unique scale and depth in clinical research. The combined efforts of the school’s basic and clinical faculty members in 24 departments, and numerous centers, institutes and initiatives make Duke one of the largest biomedical research enterprises in the country with $860 million in sponsored research expenditures annually.
By the Numbers
- Ranked third for research, Best Medical Schools, U.S. News & World Report
- 2 Nobel Laureates
- During Fiscal Year 2021, Duke had over 2,300 active clinical research studies, into which approximately 17,800 patients were enrolled.
- Duke University received $467.4 million in 2021 from the National Institutes of Health to advance medical research, ranking 10th in the country among universities, research institutions and teaching hospitals that are awarded the taxpayer-based research dollars.
- Seven clinical departments ranked among the top 10 for NIH research dollars and four basic science disciplines were also included among the top 10 for funding.
Patient care is an integral part of what makes Duke University School of Medicine a hub for pioneering research and innovation. Every day, our investigators, clinicians, and staff work together to translate research findings from the bench to the bedside, and to learn from patients as we improve their care. This collaborative spirit fuels the translation of scientific discoveries to improve human health locally and around the globe. Founded in 1998 to provide efficient, responsive care, Duke University Health System offers a full network of health services and encompasses three highly regarded hospitals—Duke University Hospital, Durham Regional Hospital and Duke Raleigh Hospital—physician practices, home hospice care and various support services at locations across North Carolina.
Inpatient Discharges, FY21
41,274 Duke University Hospital
15,881 Duke Regional Hospital
9,833 Duke Raleigh Hospital
66,988 Total Inpatient Discharges across DUHS
41,681 Duke University Hospital
16,422 Duke Regional Hospital
9,870 Duke Raleigh Hospital
67,973 Total Admissions across DUHS
Outpatient Visits, FY21
1,305,938 Duke University Hospital
217,879 Duke Regional Hospital
403,343 Duke Raleigh Hospital
757,154 Duke Primary Care
Regular Rank Faculty
245 Basic Science Faculty
2,332 Clinical Science Faculty
21 Other Faculty (in Centers, Institutes, Administration)
2,598 Total Number Faculty
School of Medicine Staff
There are approximately 6,368 staff employed in the School of Medicine, including 363 postdocs.
Duke University Health System Employees
21,226 Full-time employees
Private Diagnostic Clinic (PDC) Employees
2,022 Full-time employees
(Faculty with a primary or secondary appointment in the School of Medicine)
2 Nobel Laureates
17 American Academy of Arts and Sciences
50 American Association for the Advancement of Science
65 American Society for Clinical Investigation
49 Association of American Physicians
2 Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigators (present)
33 National Academy of Medicine
14 National Academy of Sciences
152 Faculty holding distinguished professorships
More than 12,000 health professions alumni from the Duke University School of Medicine span across the country and world, with the largest contingency located in North Carolina, California, and Florida. School of Medicine alumni provide critical support for School of Medicine research and education missions, including financial assistance for students and funding for research initiatives and endowed professorships. The Duke Medical Alumni Association supports and promotes the interests of the Duke University School of Medicine and its extended community and nurtures lifelong relationships and learning.
Health Professions Education Program Alumni (Living)
5,922 Doctor of Medicine (MD)
339 Medical Scientist Training Program (MD/PhD)
1,984 Doctor of Physical Therapy Program (DPT)
2,686 Physician Assistant Program (MHS, PA-C)
23 Clinical Leadership (MHS)
653 Clinical Research Training Program (MHS
247 Master of Biomedical Sciences
194 Master of Biostatistics
268 Master of Management in Clinical Informatics
229 Master of Science in Medical Physics
78 Pathologists’ Assistant Program (MHS)
Total Living Alumni: 12,162
In alignment with Duke Health and Duke University, the Duke University School of Medicine is committed to serving others in our local community and beyond. Our faculty, staff and students make science-based decisions and seek to transform discoveries to improve human health through a variety of community initiatives.
$753 Million: Community Health Benefit
Duke University Health System contributed $753 million to benefit the community across North Carolina, including $133M in financial assistance for residents needing healthcare.
$12 Million: Direct Contributions
Duke contributed $12 million to community-based organizations and nonprofits working to support affordable housing, education, community health and other needs.
89 Community-based Organizations
Duke provided Duke-Durham Fund COVID-19 Community Grants to 89 community-based organizations for projects that addressed immediate, basic needs for individuals and families affected by COVID-19.
The Corporate Partnership for Durham-COVID-19 Recovery Fund funded 31 large nonprofit organizations providing food, housing, childcare and education for the Durham community through the corporate partnership.
144 Small Businesses
Duke partnered with Durham City and County to create the Durham Small Business Recovery Fund which provided grants to 144 small businesses adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, in addition to city/county loans.
Duke University is internationally recognized as a leader in global health research and education. Our Global Health Institute (DGHI), brings together knowledge and resources from across the university to address today’s most important global health issues. Faculty, staff and students are working to reduce health inequities in our local communities and around the world and are engaged in research projects studying the changing global burden of disease and the many factors that influence human health. Since early 2000, DGHI researchers and students have pivoted to understand COVID-19 and reduce its global impact. They remain focused on the rapidly-shifting demographics of low- and middle-income countries, changing patterns in disease burdens, the role of technology and innovation, and the existential threat of climate change.
By the Numbers
- 99 core and 69 affiliate faculty members
- 55 percent of the DGHI faculty members are from the School of Medicine
- 270 active research grants
- $74 million in annual external research funding
- DGHI faculty have active research projects in 33 countries
- DGHI enrolls 360 students in global health education programs at all levels (undergraduate, master’s, doctoral and medical programs)
- Despite travel restrictions, 52 students participated in independent global health research during summer 2020, working with partners in 14 countries
Philanthropic support is critical to the School of Medicine’s success in carrying out its core missions of research, education, and patient care. Outright gifts, endowments, and investment income constitute nearly 20 percent of the school’s annual revenue, helping to meet key needs across the institution: scholarships and financial aid that help students afford the cost of attendance, endowed professorships that help Duke recruit and retain outstanding faculty; innovative research; and new buildings, facilities, and infrastructure.
The Duke Endowment in 2021 supported Duke University’s efforts to expand its faculty in computation, materials science and the resilience of the body and brain by completing the second phase of a $100 million investment. It is the largest award Duke University has ever received. The funds, divided equally between the university and the School of Medicine, form the base of Duke Science and Technology, a faculty hiring and fundraising effort designed to elevate excellence in the sciences at Duke. In conjunction with Duke Science and Technology, Duke University has created a new class of endowed professorships, called Duke Presidential Chairs, to maximize the university’s ability to recruit and retain exceptional faculty.
$144.8 million in new philanthropic commitments
New gifts pledged and/or received from all donors include support for all of the School of Medicine's missions.
$2.8 million contributed to the Medical Annual Fund
The Medical Annual Fund provides unrestricted resources that help the School carry out its missions, meet essential needs, and leverage new opportunities. Funds that are not directed toward a specific purpose by the donor can be used by School of Medicine leadership for the area of greatest need.
$30 million endowment for need-based financial aid
The Rauch Family Foundation, established by the late Dudley Rauch, AB’63, established an endowment for need-based financial aid for Duke medical students. The gift is the single largest commitment for financial aid ever made to the School of Medicine.