washington dc 


outpatient externship in rheumatology

Specialty: Rheumatology

MD2B Connect Physician ID # 164


Where will the rotation take place: This  hands-on outpatient experience will take place at two offices: one is 20 miles west of downtown Washington DC and the other is 40 miles northwest of downtown Washington DC. The distance between the two locations is 25 miles. Please note that you will not be traveling between these two locations on the same day. 

Hours: Monday - Friday 8:30 AM to 5 PM

What you will do: This is an outpatient experience during which you will be under the supervision of a physician who is board-certified in both internal medicine and rheumatology. Learners rotating through this practice will see a wide spectrum of rheumatologic disease, and learn about the latest treatments in the specialty. He holds a hospital appointment at the Virginia Hospital Center where he enjoys teaching internal medicine residents and medical students from Georgetown University.


He believes in providing his patients with whole person care with a focus on both physical and emotional wellbeing. There is an emphasis on building strong relationships with patients, and learners will understand how best to support patients with chronic disease. ​

After a few days of observation, you will take on an increasing role in patient care (please note that this is not a shadowing observership; you will be actively involved in patient care). This includes the following:


  • You will take patient histories.

  • You will perform physical exams under the physician's supervision.

  • You will present patients.

  • You will enter progress notes in the EMR. 

  • You will have opportunities to research the literature to answer clinical questions at the point of care.

  • You will be involved in patient education.

  • You will spend time with other healthcare professionals to understand their roles and responsibilities.

You will receive regular feedback on your performance. 

There may be opportunities to participate in projects to improve the practice. Please note that the availability of the project is at the discretion of the preceptor. 

Please note that this preceptor requires rotators to complete HIPAA training prior to the rotation. You may take one of the following courses:


Rotators should send the certificate of completion to us.

​Who should consider this rotation: International medical graduates (IMGs) and students seeking hands-on patient care experience in Rheumatology.   ​

Will a letter of recommendation be offered: Yes, assuming that the IMG meets the expectations of the rotation. Dr. Desai will provide the physician with guidelines which will improve the quality of the letter. In some cases, the preceptor may ask the rotator to write a letter of recommendation draft. 


​During the rotation: Our team will be checking in periodically with you to ensure that you are having an optimal experience. We encourage you to contact us if you have any questions during the rotation.

See Where Our Students Applying to Internal Medicine Have Received Interviews or Matched

Read Dr. Desai's Interview with Dr. Roy Ziegelstein (Vice Dean for Education at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and Former Program Director of the Internal Medicine Residency Program at Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center) about How to Match Successfully in Internal Medicine



"The doctor is an incredibly personal, warm, and respectful with all of his patients. He spends a great deal of time with every patient, teaches and educates them as he performs the H&P, empathizes with the patient's concerns, and really builds a strong physician-patient rapport with excellent bedside manner...This most definitely has been an excellent externship and one of my favorites. The doctor and his team really make you feel at home. He has gotten to know me at a personal level, genuinely shows you that he cares, and wants you to excel with all your future endeavors. The multitude and variety of cases and clinical encounters I was exposed to never left me bored." - Sapana "The doctor was an excellent preceptor. He was very interested in helping me learn and improve my clinical skills. He allowed me to interview patients independently, complete physical exams, and write SOAP notes. This was all excellent practice and training before residency. I am very happy MD2B placed me with him and would recommend his primary care clinic for future externs." - Mifrah

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To start, schedule a free introductory meeting with Dr. Desai and his team