MBBCh, MMed, PhD, FCP (SA), FRCP
Professor and Chair of Clinical Medicine: Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Cape Town
Professor Vanessa Burch obtained an MBChB degree (cum laude) at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa in 1998. After completing her internship in Johannesburg, she trained as a specialist physician at Groote Schuur Hospital, University of Cape town, and was awarded a fellowship in Internal Medicine by the College of Physicians of South Africa in 1994. She completed subspecialist training and was registered as a rheumatologist in 2001. In 1997 she was awarded a Master’s degree in Medicine by the University of Cape Town for her work on the patterns of spondyloarthropathies in South African patients. Ten years later (2007) Professor Burch was awarded a PhD by Erasmus University in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, for her work on assessment practices in undergraduate and postgraduate medical education in South Africa. In 2009 she was awarded a fellowship by the Royal College of Physicians of London in the UK.
Professor Burch has received numerous awards for her expertise as a clinician and clinician teacher. These include graduation awards for Medicine, Surgery, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, and both the MM Suzman medal (1994) as well as the Phyllis Knocker-Bradlow award (1997) from the Colleges of Medicine of South Africa (CMSA) for her outstanding performance in the fellowship examinations and a research contribution to health care in South Africa. Professor Burch has received four national awards for teaching excellence: (1) Distinguished Teacher (University of Cape Town); (2) National Excellence in Teaching and Learning (Council for Higher Education (CHE) in the Department of Higher Education and Training and the Higher Education Learning and Teaching Association of Southern Africa (HELTASA); (3) Distinguished Educator (South African Association of Health Educationalists (SAAHE), and most recently, (4) a Teaching Advancement at University (TAU) fellowship, jointly awarded by the CHE and HELTASA.
Vanessa Burch was appointed as Professor and Chair of Clinical Medicine in the Department of Medicine at the University of Cape Town in 2008. In this position she manages all the undergraduate training programmes in the department and is responsible for teaching, assessment and evaluation innovation and quality assurance. She also serves as a chief physician in the Acute General Medicine service at Groote Schuur Hospital and is Deputy Head of the Department of Medicine at Groote Schuur Hospital, University of Cape Town.