Jose R. Ruiz, MD

Start Year

Where is your hometown?

Miami, Florida

Education and Training

College/University: Williams College

Other degree: MPH, University of Miami

Medical School: University of Miami LM Miller School of Medicine

Residency: Brown University

Honors and Awards

  • Dean’s Diversity Awards for Housestaff (Brown University 2017-2018)
  • James W. Bridges Scholarship Award, presented by the National Medical Association’s South Florida chapter (2014 Recipient)
  • David A. Paulus, MD. Scientific Poster Symposium Poster Award (Florida Medical Association Annual Conference 2013)
  • Florida Academy of Family Physicians Meeting Poster Award (Florida Academy of Family Physicians 2013)
  • Jeannette Newton Academic Scholarship (University of Miami Miller School of Medicine 2012-2016)
  • Thomas Brown McClelland Trust Scholarship (Awarded by Rotary Club of Miami 2012-2016)

Fellow Perspective


Tell us briefly about your background before embarking on your medical training:

I was born and raised in the little and rural town of Pinar del Rio in Cuba. I emigrated to the United States with my mother in 2004, when I permanently relocated my home to Miami, Florida.

Please outline your career plans in gastroenterology (If you know it at this point in your training):

In the world of Gastroenterology, I am interested in Bariatric Endoscopy. However, my general interest in medicine lays in population health, addressing health disparities among my community as well as global health.

What were you looking for in a fellowship program?

When I applied to fellowship, I was looking to train in a place with a large volume of cases, that would expose me to a wide breadth of procedures using cutting edge technology in a clinically complex patient population. Additionally, I wanted to be in a place where the faculty were supportive and invested in teaching. All of which I found here at Duke.  

What advice might you offer residents looking at fellowship programs?

Breathe! You will be fine, and you will end up in the absolute best place for you. Everything works out at the end.

From your experience in fellowship, what have you learned about training at Duke?

I have learned that Duke is not only a magnificent place to train, but it will help you become an outstanding Gastroenterologist as well as a superb clinician. At Duke, you will test your limits and will learn to go far beyond them with the help and guidance of the great mentors and teachers you’ll get to work and learn from in your time here.

How is your life in the Triangle area outside of work?

I play the drums (I play the Bongos, the Congas, and the Tumba). Me and a friend, just started playing the drums together on the weekends which has been just an amazing experience. I also enjoy dancing, especially Salsa and Timba, though there are not very many places to go dancing around here, especially with COVID and such but I do what I can.

What is your favorite restaurant in Durham?

Casa Cubana Restaurant and Carmen's Cuban Cafe & Lounge.

Aside from travel, reading, and cooking…list a hobby or interest outside of work:

Again, I love playing my Bongos and dancing. Also, I very much enjoy playing Cuban Dominoes whenever I have the chance to.