Message from our Division Director
Welcome to the Division of Medical Physics, a branch of the Department of Radiation Oncology at Stanford University. We are concerned with three areas of activity: clinical service and consultation, research and development, and teaching. Our vision is to be the world’s premier program committed to excellence and innovation in clinical practice, scientific research, technological development, and education. Our mission is:
- To develop and provide cutting-edge technologies to advance the clinical patient care.
- To educate and train future leaders in medical physics.
- To excel in multidisciplinary research related to medical imaging and physics.
The above aligns directly with the mission of the Stanford Radiation Oncology Department: “To bring the most advanced care to our patients by being at the cutting edge of research and technology.”
Medical physics lies at the intersection of medicine, biology, and technology, and as such, is a fertile field for research and development. Because of its strong basic science, engineering, and medical science programs, as well as the proximities of the medical school, engineering school, and basic science department buildings to one another, Stanford inherently caters to the multidisciplinary nature of medical physics, making it a unique institution for medical physics research. In particular, our program directly benefits and contributes greatly to Stanford’s diversity and the viability of its multidisciplinary environment in biomedical engineering and medical physics. For example, our research program provides an excellent platform for our residents, postdocs, and students to interact with clinicians, granting an effective means to reduce the gap between basic scientific research and clinical practice. Further, we truly believe that an effective interplay between research, clinical practice, and industrial R&D is essential to advance patient care. Clinically, we work closely with radiation oncologists, radiation therapists, and other healthcare alliance members to ensure that our patients are treated safely, accurately, and efficiently.
We have taken various initiatives to accomplish our mission over the years and we are proud that our division is internationally recognized as one of the best in the field of medical physics. As can be found from exploring this website, our research and development activities cover a broad range of subjects within the scope of radiation physics, including artificial intelligence and big data, anatomical and molecular imaging, image-guided interventions, treatment planning, FLASH and radiobiological modeling, novel dose delivery techniques, robotics, cloud computing, Monte Carlo simulation, nanomedicine, and targeted therapy.
Our faculty members are involved with various educational activities campus-wide. In addition to teaching medical physics, biomedical engineering and cancer biology courses at the graduate student level, they help train future medical physicists, resident physicians, medical students, and technologists who operate various types of equipment used for therapeutic treatment and imaging. We have an active CAMPEP-accredited medical physics residency program and have produced a large number of leaders in the field of medical physics. Training the next generation of medical physicists and scientists to interact across traditional medical and technical boundaries, and preparing them for leadership positions in medical physics, bioengineering, and healthcare is one of our top priorities.
Stanford Radiation Oncology has a rich history of scientific innovation and technical developments: we have directly expanded upon the potential of modern medicine and research through the development of the medical linear accelerator, CyberKnife, IMRT, VMAT, IGRT, SBRT, BGRT, MR-LINAC, artificial intelligence in healthcare, molecular imaging, and nanomedicine. Looking forward, there have never been more opportunities for making rapid and significant advances in cancer imaging and treatment. Our division is uniquely positioned with an extraordinary clinical, translational, and basic scientific research infrastructure. This in turn will allow us to directly integrate recent discoveries and technical advances in bioengineering, molecular biology, medical physics and medical imaging into clinical practice to revolutionize healthcare. We will continuously push the boundaries of traditional radiation oncology through scientific discoveries, technical development, and close collaboration with physicians, physicists, staff, and industry partners.