Background Internists who have an important role in the global response to the COVID-19 pandemic are under both physical and psychological pressures. Aims To assess the anxiety among physicians working in the internal medicine department of a tertiary care hospital who are on the frontline of the COVID-19 pandemic. Methods This single-centre, non-intervention, cross-sectional descriptive study was conducted using an online survey questionnaire from 1 April to 14 April 2020. Physicians of the Department of Internal Medicine were invited to participate with a self-administered questionnaire. The degree of symptoms of anxiety was assessed by the Turkish versions of the 7-item Generalised Anxiety Disorder scale and Beck Anxiety Inventory, respectively. Results A total of 113 participants consented for the study and completed the questionnaire. The median age was 29 (IQR = 5) years and 53.1% were male. A total of 72 internists (63.7%) worked as 'frontline' healthcare workers directly engaged in diagnosing, treating or caring for patients with or suspected to have COVID-19. Female gender was significantly associated with high scores and levels in all scales compared to the male gender (P< 0.005). Having family members over 65 years old and with chronic diseases were significantly associated with high anxiety scores and levels (P< 0.005). Conclusions In this survey of internists in a university hospital equipped with clinics, wards and intensive care unit for patients with COVID-19, female gender and having family members over 65 years old and with chronic diseases were associated with increased anxiety levels.