Santosh Rao, MD, ABOIM an Oncologist with Banner MD Anderson Cancer Center

Get to know Oncologist Dr. Santosh Rao, who serves patients in Gilbert, Arizona.

As a board-certified and fellowship-trained oncologist, Dr. Rao’s speciality focus is on genitourinary medical oncology, integrative medicine, and medical oncology. He is the Medical Director of Integrative Medicine at Banner MD Anderson Cancer Center in Gilbert, Arizona. 

The union joins Banner Health, one of the country’s largest nonprofit hospital systems, with MD Anderson, internationally renowned for its cancer treatment and research, to deliver unprecedented levels of cancer care in Arizona. MD Anderson’s mission to “eliminate cancer in Texas, the nation and the world through outstanding programs that integrate patient care, research, education and prevention” complements Banner Health’s mission “to make a difference in people’s lives through excellent patient care.”

In addition to serving as Co-chair of the Clinical Practice Committee at the Society of Integrative Oncology, Dr. Rao is the Medical Director of the James M Cox Foundation Center. He is affiliated with Banner Baywood Medical Center, Banner Desert Medical Center, Banner Gateway Medical Center, Banner Heart Hospital. “I believe that no matter the circumstance, as caregivers we can offer hope and support, and educate patients on how they can participate in their own care.” as stated by the doctor. 

He participates in integrative medicine research, including sleep, meditation and cancer, the impact of integrative medicine on health care costs and outcomes, as well as art therapy and the effects on chemo brain.

Aiming to contribute to education modules for the cancer curriculum, Dr. Rao teaches integrative medicine fellows at the University of Arizona. He also frequently speaks and writes about integrative medicine to increase public knowledge. “The integrative approach empowers patients by directing their energies toward healthy lifestyle strategies, improving the tolerance and success of treatment, and reducing the risk of recurrence.” he stated.  

Dr. Rao’s interest in integrative medicine was sparked in college. After studying biophysics at the University of Michigan, he continued his medical education at the University of Michigan Medical School, earning his medical degree in 2000. He then went on to complete his residency in internal medicine at the University of California San Diego Medical Center in 2003. He completed his fellowship at the University of Arizona College of Medicine in 2006, followed by his fellowship in hematology-oncology at the University Hospitals Case Medical Center in 2013. 

The doctor is board-certified in both internal medicine and medical oncology by the American Board of Internal Medicine, a physician-led, non-profit, independent evaluation organization driven by doctors who want to achieve higher standards for better care in a rapidly changing world. He is also board-certified in integrative and holistic medicine by the American Board of Integrative Medicine. 

Oncology is a branch of medicine that deals with the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of cancer. A medical professional who practices oncology is an oncologist. An oncologist is a doctor who treats cancer and provides medical care for a person diagnosed with cancer. They lead a cancer treatment team of various healthcare professionals, treat patients with radiation therapy, coordinate treatment plans and prescribe various types of treatment, including chemotherapy and immunotherapy, as well as assist patients with pain management.

Outside of the office, Dr. Rao enjoys travelling, hiking, meditating, doing yoga and Aikido, as well as participating in sports. He speaks Hindi, Spanish, and Kannada fluently, which makes him widely accessible to patients from a variety of cultural backgrounds.

Learn more about Dr. Santosh Rao:

Through his findatopdoc profile, or through Banner Health,



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Karen Johnson

Karen Johnson is an Associate Content manager for FindaTopDoc and responsible for working with distinguished physicians in documenting their significant accomplishments in their field. Karen is a CPR instructor and is a member of her local theater group.