The origin of what would ultimately become, in January 2005, the UC San Diego Division of Hospital Medicine, dates back to 1997 when two clinic-based internists began caring part-time for inpatients at UC San Diego Thornton Hospital in La Jolla. In the summer of 2001, four full-time hospitalists created the Hospital Medicine Program, continuing care of inpatients at Thornton Hospital. The Hospital Medicine Program underwent significant expansion in 2003 to provide care also for inpatients at UC San Diego Medical Center – Hillcrest, in downtown San Diego.
The 2005 formation of the Division of Hospital Medicine put in place an academic program of hospital-based internists who would provide outstanding clinical care, teach masterfully to medical students and residents, and contribute clinically-based scholarship to the Department of Medicine, the School of Medicine, and the entirety of academic health care. With the overall growth of UC San Diego Health, the Division of Hospital Medicine now consists of approximately 55 hospitalists and 6 physician assistants providing expert inpatient care, teaching, research, and quality improvement at both the La Jolla and Hillcrest medical campuses. In 2020, the Division welcomed its first one-year fellow.