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Shenandoah Valley Family Practice Residency

Welcome to the Shenandoah Valley Family Practice Residency Program! Our residency is a rural-oriented program in the Shenandoah Valley of northwestern Virginia, about 70 miles west of Washington, D.C.

We are affiliated with the Medical College of Virginia/Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine (

Our program is fully accredited for our 3-year residency by the ACGME with Osteopathic recognition, allowing full board certification eligibility for MD and DO physicians. We have 5 residents in each class.

Our mission is to train new quality family physicians for practice in Virginia’s rural areas and small towns who will be competent to practice in any environment. Also, to provide high quality, cost effective, readily accessible care for our patients, their families, and our community.

Learn More & Apply

Visit this page to learn more about our application process.

About the Program


Training occurs in two complementary sites. We have a practice in Front Royal, VA, along with cutting edge subspecialists and technology in Winchester, VA. These two locations are connected by 23 miles of interstate highway, allowing quick access for rotations, yet enough distance that our patients come to us for the bulk of their care.

Winchester Medical Center

Winchester Medical Center

Specialty rotations are in the award-winning Winchester Medical Center, a 411 bed, four-state referral medical center, Trauma Center, Heart Institute, Cancer Center, Neonatal ICU, and much more. The specialty faculty physicians are from the best residencies and fellowships in the country.

Warren Memorial Hospital

Warren Memorial Hospital

We also practice at the new Warren Memorial Hospital (36 bed) in Front Royal.

Our team is on-call for admissions and provides Family Practice Inpatient Service. Residents apply their high-tech med center training to manage patients, not just to triage and refer to others.


The vast majority of our graduates practice the breadth of Family Medicine – office, hospital and ICU. Because of our training, some of our graduates have been aggressively recruited to full-time work in Emergency Medicine or even full-time hospitalist work.

While some practice in suburban and major city locales, about half of our graduates practice in small town and rural areas, and this is a large percentage for rural training programs. Many of the respected Family Physicians on staff at the Winchester Medical Center are graduates of our program. Once you get to know Virginia, it can be hard to leave.

Private Practice

The core Family Practice Faculty members are partners in a real private practice, with residents working as junior associates. You witness up close the details of real practice: the hiring of staff, purchasing equipment, training needs, billing and working with insurances, finding needed resources, and so on. This day-to-day work in a real-life private practice, along with our 3-year Practice Management Curriculum, is one reason that so many of our graduates have felt comfortable setting up their own solo practices. Our Electronic Medical Record is fully integrated with the large regional health system’s hospitals, labs, and x-ray, for smooth patient care and coordination.

Behavioral Health

Our Behavioral Health and Psychiatry in Primary Care Curriculum is consistent with the American Psychiatric Association recommendations for evidence-based integrative behavioral medical practice. Our training, including collaboration with a board certified psychiatric provider, prepares our family medicine residents to deliver psychiatric care in ambulatory clinics and practices. Our curriculum content is consistent with the ACGME guidelines and milestones for family medicine and psychiatry residency training. The three-year longitudinal curriculum enables our residents to accurately diagnosis and effectively treat and manage the many psychiatric disorders that routinely present in the primary care clinic, especially in psychiatrically underserved areas. In addition, lifestyle and mind-body medicine practices are included to provide comprehensive training that augments traditional psychiatric and general medical approaches.

Global Medicine

Rural Family Medicine training is ideally suited for work in the third world. Many residents are excited about our Global Medicine Elective in Honduras, under the direction of our own Dr. Thomas Ball. Each year, Dr. Ball takes residents and VCU medical students to an ongoing clinic site in the mountains of Honduras. Our VCU connection has expanded this opportunity to include the Dominican Republic and Ghana in West Africa. Click here for brigade video:

Our Patients

Our patients represent our area and a broad range of people; rich or poor, working or unemployed, locals and immigrants, educated or needy disabled. Our demographic closely resembles that of the U.S. as a whole. There is social and ethnic diversity, and Spanish language skills are helpful. We care for patients not just in the office, hospital, and nursing home, but also in patient homes, an adolescent medicine school clinic, university sports medicine clinic, and three public health clinics.


Board review begins in the first year and continues all three years. Our program’s unique level of management of complex patients without immediate specialist backup allows our residents to have a deeper than usual knowledge of complicated medical problems. For several years, each class of residents has scored above the national average for their training year on the In-Training Exam of the American Board of Family Medicine. Our D.O. residents also score in the top percentiles on the yearly In-Service Exam of the American College of Osteopathic Family Physicians. Our program and faculty and residents have won numerous awards and honors (see Awards and Research page). Our residents and faculty regularly present at national and international conferences, and most residents get published. Most of our core Family Practice Faculty have completed teaching fellowships, gaining advanced teaching skills for this clinically-based, practical group. Our close academic affiliation with the MCV/VCU School of Medicine affords our residents many learning opportunities with our fellow VCU programs, and additional resources, support and academic training for our faculty.

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