As professor of internal medicine and chair of geriatric medicine within the VCU School of Medicine, Peter Boling, M.D., has built a legacy of service. He chose the primary care medicine residency at VCU in 1981 once he completed medical school. He then took a faculty position in 1984 and started the health system’s house calls program. That program pushed him into the Richmond community and the world of geriatric medicine.
For almost 40 years now, he has championed high-quality, compassionate and cost-effective care for older adults and provided a community-based learning experience for all VCU medical students. Boling’s commitment to serving not only older adults but also the next generation of doctors prompted him to design a new 30-hour preclinical curriculum for medical students and develop a four-year longitudinal geriatric medicine course, including a web-based interprofessional capstone case exercise for 600 health professions students each year. He also created an annual Forum on Aging and a Geriatric Student Interest Group, and he created and has overseen required house calls and nursing home visits for all medical students as part of a new interprofessional aging curriculum for students in multiple VCU professional schools.
Boling has worked to foster system change and to invigorate geriatric education and interprofessional team care at VCU. He has been a leader in planning and implementing primary care services, and has served as chair of divisions, various committees, boards and planning groups, including the Strategic Planning Task Force to expand VCU primary care services. He was instrumental in developing Commonwealth Care of Virginia, a 180-physician Independent Physician Association, serving as president, board member and liaison to the VCU Health System. In 2019, Boling was appointed as the health system’s director for post-acute care services based on his record of excellence in leading clinical care initiatives that reduced barriers for and gaps in long-term care, ambulatory geriatric primary care and transitional care for citizens throughout the region. Over the years, Boling has established a strong VCU Division of Geriatric Medicine with 25 faculty members, combining the downtown and VA Medical Center campuses and providing a comprehensive spectrum of clinical services to older adults across the health system and in the community; created a center for team-based geriatric care; and successfully championed changes in national payment policy to foster restoration of house calls to American medical practice.
“Dr. Boling’s service has advanced patient-centered, value-based health care and enhanced the quality of life for older persons across the U.S.,” says Peter Buckley, M.D., interim CEO of the VCU Health System and dean of the School of Medicine. “His legacy is a national model for sustained and exceptional service, innovative teaching to support excellence in clinical care, community engagement and national impact.”