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Examples of Off-Site Health Policy Electives

Second Year Clinical Scholars
2013-2015 Cohort

Marcus Bachhuber, M.D.

Marcus Bachhuber, M.D. (VA Scholar)
University of Pennsylvania


Marcus Bachhuber, M.D. received his undergraduate degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison followed by a medical degree from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. He completed residency and chief residency in Primary Care/Social Internal Medicine at Montefiore Medical Center/Albert Einstein College of Medicine in the Bronx, New York. Providing primary care, including office-based opioid treatment, at a Federally Qualified Health Center in the South Bronx inspired him to devote his career to studying the organization and delivery of medical and substance abuse treatment services to underserved populations.

Career Interest: Dr. Bachhuber plans to pursue a career in academic general internal medicine with a focus on health services research.
 
Research Interest: Organization and delivery of substance abuse treatment services, engagement and retention in primary care and substance abuse treatment, integration of medical and substance abuse services, methodological aspects of working with large administrative databases.

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Tasce Bongiovanni, MD, MPP

Tasce Bongiovanni, M.D., MPP (VA Scholar)
Yale University


Tasce Bongiovanni, M.D., MPP earned her undergraduate degree from Santa Clara University and her medical degree from UCSF during which time she also earned a Master of Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. Dr. Bongiovanni is completing her surgical training at UCSF. She is interested in health policy and healthcare delivery for underserved communities, particularly Native Americans.

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 Elizabeth Brown, M.D

Elizabeth Brown, M.D
University of Pennsylvania


Elizabeth Brown, M.D. received her undergraduate degree in biology from Northwestern University. Prior to attending medical school, she was a research associate with the Institute of Medicine, where she worked on studies on quality measurement in cancer care and cancer survivorship. She attended medical school at the University of Chicago. During her residency in Family Medicine at Brown University, she collaborated on a project with the Rhode Island Department of Health to define a "medical practice" to assist with assessment and planning of the primary care delivery system.

Career Interest: Liz envisions a career combining health policy research and medical education, with the goal of encouraging future primary care physicians to be active in restructuring our health care system.
 
Research Interest: primary care delivery and workforce, payment reform, access to care, quality of care.

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Aaron Dawes, M.D.

Aaron Dawes, M.D. (VA Scholar)
University of California Los Angeles

Aaron Dawes, M.D.
is a general surgery resident at the University of California, Los Angeles. Dr. Dawes earned his undergraduate degree in Public and International Affairs from Princeton University. He received his medical training at Vanderbilt University. During his undergraduate career, Dr. Dawes served as an intern to the Health Policy Division of the Minority Office of the Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) committee under the late Senator Ted Kennedy in Washington, DC, where he prepared briefs and performed background research on health policy issues. During his medical training, Dr. Dawes worked as a researcher at the Vanderbilt Institute for Medicine and Science where he evaluated the function capacity of public health services on the Navajo Nation based on Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommendations. Presently, Dr. Dawes is performing a retrospective analysis of surgical readmission to identify potentially preventable readmissions.  Dr. Dawes' research interests include surgical outcomes, cost-effective analysis, and health economics and health policy. As a Clinical Scholar, Dr. Dawes will pursue a project to establish and validate surgical intensive care unit (SICU) admission criteria.

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Maria Han, M.D.

Maria Han, M.D.
University of California Los Angeles

Maria Han, M.D. is an internal medicine physician who completed residency training at Massachusetts General Hospital. Dr. Han earned her undergraduate degree in Chemistry at the Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. She received her medical training at Yale University. During her medical training, Dr. Han served as a clinical investigator on a research study assessing the impact of medication use and medical morbidities on symptom burden in older patients.  Presently, Dr. Han serves as the Research Investigator for the Medical Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment (MOLST) Implementation Committee and is conducting a study to measure the impact of MOLST on rates of emergency department (ED) transfers and hospital readmissions. Dr. Han's research interests include geriatric care innovations, use of media in medicine, and health economics. As a Clinical Scholar, Dr. Han would like to explore the intersection of technology and health promotion in improving the efficiency of care and health outcomes for older patients.  

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Keith Hermanstyne, M.D.

Keith Hermanstyne, M.D.
University of California Los Angeles

Keith Hermanstyne, M.D. is a psychiatrist who completed residency training at the University of California, San Francisco. Dr. Hermanstyne earned his undergraduate degree in Human Biology, Health, and Society at Cornell University. He received his medical training at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. He subsequently received a Master of Public Health from the University of California, Berkeley. While completing his master's degree, Dr. Hermanstyne collaborated with scientists at the University of California, San Francisco to explore the risk associated with non-injection drug use implements and hepatitis C, which was recently accepted for publication by the Journal of Public Health. Presently, Dr. Hermanstyne is working with the San Francisco Department of Public Health to perform secondary analyses on medication interventions to reduce methamphetamine dependent in men who have sex with men (MSM), with the goal of reducing HIV transmission via high-risk sexual behavior. Dr. Hermanstyne's research interests include substance use disorders, HIV transmission risk factors, and public policy. As a Clinical Scholar, Dr. Hermanstyne would like to pursue a project that further explores ways to reduce substance dependence and co-morbid medical risks such as HIV in interdisciplinary medical/psychiatric settings. 

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Lauren Hughes, MD

Lauren Hughes, M.D.
University of Michigan

Lauren Hughes, M.D., MPH is a family physician who pursued her undergraduate studies in zoology and Spanish at Iowa State University, her graduate training in health policy at The George Washington University, and her medical degree at the University of Iowa.  She served as the national president of the American Medical Student Association for one year prior to completing her residency at the University of Washington in Seattle.  Dr. Hughes has volunteered in a federally qualified health center through AmeriCorps, worked at Iowa Senator Tom Harkin's office in Washington, DC, and studied medicine and health systems in Brazil, Sweden, Tanzania, and Botswana.  She has been a visiting scholar at the Robert Graham Center and at ABC News Medical Unit in New York City.

Career Interests: She plans a career combining community health center practice, health policy and administration, and academic family medicine.

Research Interests: As an RWJ Clinical Scholar, she will focus her research in primary care workforce development and innovations in primary care delivery.

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Justin List, MD

Justin List, M.D. (VA Scholar)
University of Michigan

Justin List, M.D., MAR received his undergraduate degree in biology and religion from Augustana College (IL).  He then went on to study ethics at Yale University Divinity School and completed a fellowship at the Institute for Ethics at the American Medical Association afterwards.  During medical school at Loyola University Stritch School of Medicine, he trained through the NIH/Fogarty International Clinical Research Scholars program in Kampala, Uganda as study coordinator for a TB/HIV active case finding community-based project.  He completed his internal medicine training in the Yale Primary Care program.  He has written on topics in the areas of bioethics, global health, service learning, and social justice.

Career Interests: He would like to conduct health services research and provide consulting skills to strengthen primary care health systems, including more effective chronic disease care management.  He also intends to practice primary care.

Research Interests: His research interests include understanding risk perception for diabetes among pre-diabetic patients, screening/treatment disparities in cancer care, data linking social determinants of health to chronic diseases, and learning implementation science skills to translate clinical research into public health programming and policy.

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Theodore Long, M.D.

Theodore Long, M.D.
Yale University


Theodore Long, M.D. received his undergraduate degree in political science and American healthcare policy from Yale College. Prior to starting medical school, he worked for the California Medical Association and established an undergraduate health policy journal at Yale. He received his medical degree from Keck School of Medicine at USC, where he started USC’s first student-run free health clinic. He completed his internal medicine training at Yale, and is a general internist. As a resident, he was a founding member of the VA Center of Excellence in Primary Care Education site in West Haven, an interprofessional model for primary care training.

Career Interests: He would like to practice general internal medicine while completing research in primary care and transitions of care that can be translated into policy.

Research Interests: His research interests include primary care delivery, primary care education, transitions of care, healthcare for the underserved, and translating clinical research into policy.

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Brandon Maughan, M.D., M.H.S.

Brandon Maughan, M.D., M.H.S. (VA Scholar)
University of Pennsylvania


Brandon Maughan, M.D., M.H.S. is an emergency medicine physician who was raised in Portland, Oregon. He attended Stanford University and received a B.S. in Biology, after which he completed a master’s degree in health policy from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Dr. Maughan worked as a health policy consultant at The Lewin Group before returning to academics and obtaining his medical degree from Case Western Reserve University. He completed emergency medicine residency training and chief residency at Brown University, during which he served as the resident board member for the Society for Academic Emergency Medicine.

Career Interest: Dr. Maughan plans to pursue a leadership career in academic emergency medicine and conduct research on the safety, efficiency, and value of emergency care. His long-term career interests focus on state and federal health policy advocacy, public service, and translating policy research into improved public health.
 
Research Interest: Emergency medicine comparative effectiveness, cost transparency, physician risk tolerance, variation and appropriate use of diagnostic testing, measuring the value of emergency care services.

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Pooja Mehta

Pooja Mehta, M.D. (VA Scholar)
University of Pennsylvania


Pooja Mehta, M.D. is an obstetrician/gynecologist who grew up in the United Kingdom, India, and New York. She received her undergraduate degree in History and Sociology from Columbia University. She obtained her medical degree from Mount Sinai School of Medicine after completing a Doris Duke International Clinical Research Fellowship in Durban, South Africa. She completed her residency training at Boston University/Boston Medical Center where she experienced first-hand the effects of health care reform on provision of health care services in a safety-net setting.

Career Interest: Dr. Mehta hopes to work in an underserved setting that allows her to combine her love for clinical obstetrics and gynecology, medical education, and her passion for research as a vehicle for advocacy and reproductive justice.
 
Research Interest: Dr. Mehta is especially interested in the effects of health care reform on reproductive health disparities affecting particularly marginalized populations such as incarcerated women and undocumented immigrants. She is a believer in community-based participatory research as a tool for social justice and policy change.

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Michelle Moniz, MD

Michelle Moniz, M.D.
University of Michigan

Michelle Moniz, M.D. is an Obstetrician-Gynecologist who grew up in Los Angeles, California.  She earned her undergraduate degree in Biology and English from the Johns Hopkins University.  Dr. Moniz studied medicine at Washington University in Saint Louis and went on to complete her residency training with the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Sciences at the University of Pittsburgh/Magee-Women’s Hospital.

Career Interests: She hopes to be a Clinician-Investigator in an academic ObGyn department where she can work with medical trainees.

Research Interests: During her residency, she studied the effects of a text messaging intervention on pregnant women’s preventive health beliefs and behaviors.  As a scholar, she is interested in leveraging cellular phone technologies and public health marketing for health promotion among obstetric populations.  She is also interested in exploring novel ways for physicians to communicate with patients and motivate health promoting behaviors.

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Elizabeth Patton, MD

Elizabeth Patton, M.D. (VA Scholar)
University of Michigan

Elizabeth Patton, M.D. is an obstetrician-gynecologist interested in patient communication and understanding of risk in the OG/GYN setting.  She is originally from Harvard, Massachusetts and earned a BA in Comparative Religion and the History of Science at Harvard University.  She subsequently completed a Masters of Philosophy in Theology at Cambridge University in the UK.  After working for a couple of years while completing her post-baccalaureate premedical requirements, she attended the University of Massachusetts Medical School, obtaining her medical degree.  She recently completed a four year obstetrics and gynecology residency at Northwestern in Chicago, where she had the opportunity to work at both Northwestern Prentice Women’s Hospital and Stroger Hospital of Cook County.

Career Interests: Having found her experiences working with underserved populations through her resident clinic and at Stroger Hospital of Cook County to have been the most meaningful and satisfying of her residency training.  She would like to eventually work in an academic setting that serves a similar population.  She would like to work with communities to design systems of women’s health care that innovatively meet community needs for education and OB/GYN care.

Research Interests: She is interested in patients’ understanding of risk and how that understanding affects decision making in OB/GYN clinical care, particularly in communities with lower health literacy.  She is also interested in communication between physicians, patients and the healthcare team, its impact on patient safety, and how system changes can improve patient care.

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Carley Riley, M.D., M.P.P.

Carley Riley, M.D., M.P.P.
Yale University


Carley Riley, M.D., M.P.P. grew up in the northern suburbs of Chicago. She received both her undergraduate education in English Literature and her medical degree from Northwestern University. She subsequently earned a Master of Public Policy from UCLA, completed residency training in Pediatrics at Children's Hospital Los Angeles, and then graduated fellowship in Pediatric Critical Care Medicine at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center. Through her research and activism, Dr. Riley strives to create healthier communities across all demographics by building positive health assets, fostering resilience, and promoting population health from childhood into adulthood.

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Loren Robinson, M.D.

Loren Robinson, M.D.
University of Pennsylvania


Loren Robinson, M.D. completed the Combined Internal Medicine and Pediatrics program at UNC Chapel Hill. As both an Internist and Pediatrician, she feels that she has developed a skill set that will allow her to care for patients across generations, with a special emphasis on transition of care of the difficult adolescent patient. For her undergraduate training, Loren attended Spelman College where she graduated Summa Cum Laude with a degree in French/Pre-Medical Studies. Dr. Robinson then proceeded to complete her medical studies at Duke University School of Medicine. She spent her years at Duke working to engage and give back to both the local and global communities, spending a year abroad in Cape Town, South Africa conducting a project geared toward empowering community health workers. While at Duke, she was very active in the community, from mentoring on the undergraduate campus to implementing a healthy behaviors program at a local middle school. She continued this tradition of activism at UNC. Dr. Robinson's ultimate goal is to practice comprehensive care in an underserved community.

Career Interest: Dr. Robinson plans to use her comprehensive background in both Internal Medicine and Pediatrics to help influence and create health policy on a national level. On a smaller scale, she hopes to coordinate community outreach programs that will be geared toward youth, especially adolescent girls.
 
Research Interest: As a scholar, Dr. Robinson plans to examine the effect that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has had on underserved communities and determine if this is a sustainable solution in the effort to expand healthcare with reducing health disparities.

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Maisha Robinson, M.D.

Maisha Robinson, M.D.
University of California Los Angeles

Maisha Robinson, M.D. is a neurologist who earned her undergraduate degree in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at Princeton University, and her medical degree from Tufts University. She completed her residency training at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN,where she was named Chief Resident in her final year. Impacted by patients with chronic neurological diseases whose cases involved end of life care and symptom-based management, Dr. Robinson elected to pursue a Hospice and Palliative Medicine fellowship at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York, NY. She completed a neurohospitalist fellowship at the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, FL, where her research and teaching focused on pain management in inpatients on the Neurology service. There, Dr. Robinson utilized her training in palliative care to revise Mayo's Neurology residency curriculum, implementing pain and palliative care didactics and simulated scenarios. In 2012, she was selected as an Emerging Leader by the American Academy of Neurology. Dr. Robinson's research interests include end-of-life care, advance care planning and palliative care in patients with neurological diseases, and in racial and ethnic minorities. As a Clinical Scholar, she plans to investigate the existing barriers to offering early palliative care to patients with chronic neurological diseases. 

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Brita Roy, M.D., M.P.H., M.S.

Brita Roy, M.D., M.P.H., M.S. (VA Scholar)
Yale University


Brita Roy, MD, MPH, MS (VA Scholar)is a general internist who grew up in New Jersey and Michigan. She earned her undergraduate degree from Vanderbilt University and subsequently studied at Wayne State University where she earned an MS in Biomedical Engineering. She went on to the University of Michigan where she completed a combined MD/MPH program in health behavior and health education.  Dr. Roy then completed her internal medicine residency training and served one year as Chief Medical Resident at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

Career Interests: Dr. Roy anticipates a career in academic general medicine where she may continue her research as well as teach medical students and residents. 

Research Interests: Dr. Roy is interested in improving medical education and in reducing gender and racial disparities in cardiovascular disease by promoting positive psychosocial assets.  Her goal is to help lead change in shifting our nation's culture towards the promotion of well-being across all demographic and social sectors by fostering resilience and building positive health assets through research, policy and activism.

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Greg Sacks, M.D.

Greg Sacks, M.D., M.P.H.
University of California Los Angeles

Greg Sacks, M.D., M.P.H. is a general surgery resident at the University of California, Los Angeles. After completing his undergraduate studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara, Dr. Sacks went on to receive a Masters of Public Health from the Harvard School of Public Health in 2010 and his medical degree from the University of California, Irvine in 2011. During his medical training, Dr. Sacks served as Chapter President for the American Medical Student Association where he initiated a health policy elective for medical students and led an effort to successfully integrate health policy into the medical school curriculum. Dr. Sacks also created, wrote, and directed a documentary entitled "A Right For Us All" on the medical student movement to promote a single payer health care system in California. He also led a public health project in Southern Mexico working alongside community health workers to address the problem of indoor air pollution. Dr. Sacks' research interests include health policy, quality improvement, health disparities, and understanding the complex relationship between the design of health care systems and patient's health outcomes. As a Clinical Scholar, Dr. Sacks will pursue a project aimed at reducing preventable readmissions after surgery, thereby improving quality, reducing costs, and protecting patients from unnecessary hospital stays. 

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Andrew J. Schoenfeld, MD

Andrew J. Schoenfeld, M.D. (VA Scholar)
University of Michigan

Andrew J. Schoenfeld, M.D. earned bachelor’s degrees in history and integrated life sciences at Kent State University before going on to medical school at the Northeastern Ohio Universities College of Medicine.  He completed an orthopaedic surgery residency at Akron General Medical Center/Northeastern Ohio Universities College of Medicine and then engaged in a spine surgical fellowship at Harvard Medical School/Massachusetts General Hospital/Brigham and Women’s Hospital.  He subsequently served four years on active duty with the United States Army, where he deployed to Afghanistan and served as the Clinical Director of the Medical Evaluation Board, Fort Bliss Texas, as well as the Director of Orthopaedic Research for the William Beaumont Army Medical Center/Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center Orthopaedic Residency Program.

Career Interests: Anticipates a career in academic orthopaedics and spinal medicine with a research focus on healthcare disparities in musculoskeletal medicine and the impact of chronic medical conditions on the development of musculoskeletal disease as well as their impact on outcomes following treatment.

Research Interest: Include examining surgical healthcare disparities present in single payer systems and their underlying etiologies as well as investigating change agents capable of enhancing care for spinal and degenerative disorders within underserved populations.  As a clinical scholar, he plans to discern the impact of chronic infectious diseases on the development and severity of musculoskeletal conditions, particularly within the American Veteran population.

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Mark Silvestri, M.D.

Mark Silvestri, M.D.
Yale University


Mark Silvestri, M.D. graduated with honors from Harvard College. While in college, he interned for the White House Council of Economic Advisors and then earned his medical degree from the University of Chicago. He completed OB-GYN residency at Yale and is interested in the intersection of medicine and economics and improving the economic trajectory for young urban mothers.

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Michelle St. Fleur, M.D.

Michelle St. Fleur, M.D.
University of California Los Angeles

Michelle St. Fleur, M.D. is a family medicine physician who completed residency training at Montefiore Medical Center. Dr. St. Fleur earned her undergraduate degree in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at the University of Massachusetts. Dr. St. Fleur received her medical training at the University of Massachusetts Medical School where she was an Albert Schweitzer Fellow and co-founded "The Big Picture: Health Issues Facing Worcester," an enrichment course to expose medical students to the health needs of the community around the university. Recently, Dr. St. Fleur worked on a literature review on depression and anxiety among African-American women and presented her work entitled "Black, Bold, and Hurting: Eliminating the Disparity" at the 2012 Society for Teacher of Family Medicine Conference.  Dr. St. Fleur's research interests include health disparities, mental illness, and women of color.  As a Clinical Scholar, Dr. St. Fleur would like to pursue a project to engage community participation in understanding the gaps that lead to inadequate access to mental health services among African-American women in primary care.

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Efrain Talamantes, M.D.

Hung-Jui (Ray) Tan, M.D. (VA Scholar)
University of California Los Angeles

Hung-Jui (Ray) Tan, M.D. is a urologist who completed medical and residency training at the University of Michigan. Dr. Tan earned his undergraduate degree in Chemistry and Economics from Duke University. During medical school, Dr. Tan was the recipient of a grant from the Medical Student Biomedical Research Program at the University of Michigan to study short- and long-term outcomes of patients treated surgically for neurogenic bladder and stress urinary incontinence. During his residency, Dr. Tan dedicated a year towards health services research through the Dow Division for Urologic Health Services Research at the University of Michigan. Collaborating with members of the University of Michigan Center for Healthcare Outcomes and Policy, Dr. Tan focused on the adoption of new technology, patient safety, and comparative-effectiveness of surgical treatments for kidney cancer. As a Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar, Dr. Tan hopes to expand on this existing work to both identify and implement specific processes-of-care that can optimize care for patients undergoing inpatient surgery.

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Renuka Tipirneni, MD

Renuka Tipirneni, M.D.
University of Michigan

Renuka Tipirneni, M.D. is a general internist motivated to improve the health care system for vulnerable populations.  She completed her undergraduate training at Cornell University, medical degree and certificate in biomedical research at the University of California, San Francisco, and primary care internal medicine residency at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH).  During her training, she was active in legislative advocacy efforts, most notably in organizing health professional students across California to promote universal health care through lobby day events.  After residency, she stayed on at MGH to work at a community health center serving immigrants and other underserved groups in Chelsea, MA.  She is interested in investigating how local and national health care reform implementation may impact health disparities, and how the delivery system may be optimized to improve care for vulnerable populations.

Career Interests: she will pursue a career in academic medicine and public health/health policy.  Her career goals are to work to find innovative ways of creating an ideal health care system for underserved populations and to work toward eliminating health disparities.

Research Interests: she is interested in the potential impact of health care reform on health disparities and generally in issues related to health care access, primary care redesign, immigrant health, and vulnerable populations.

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Charlene Wong, M.D.

Charlene Wong, M.D.
University of Pennsylvania


Charlene Wong, M.D. is a pediatrician who completed her undergraduate training at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a degree in biology. She received her medical degree from Emory University in Atlanta. During medical school, she did an epidemiology fellowship at the CDC where she conducted research on the HPV vaccine. She then completed her pediatrics residency at Seattle Children's Hospital/University of Washington where she researched adolescent vaccines and American Indian/Alaska Native infant and pediatric mortality.

Career Interest: Dr. Wong plans to pursue a career as a clinician-researcher, with a subspeciality in adolescent medicine.
 
Research Interest: Dr. Wong is interested in examining the role of social media and new media on adolescent and young adult health, with a focus on high-risk behaviors including violence, sexual health and substance use.

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William Wood, MD

William Wood, M.D. (VA Scholar)
University of Michigan

William Wood, M.D. is a general surgery resident at the University of California, San Francisco - East Bay Surgery Program. He received an Associate’s degree in Biology from Santa Rosa Junior College in California and a Bachelor’s degree in Integrative Biology from University of California, Berkeley. He continued his education in the Joint Medical Program, a dual-degree program through the University of California, San Francisco where he completed his medical degree (M.D.), and the University of California, Berkeley School of Public Health, where he earned his Masters of Science (MS). His Master’s thesis focused on MRSA infections amongst intercollegiate athletes.

Career Interests: He is pursuing a career as a clinically active surgeon and academic clinician-researcher. He intends to become a leader in the field of patient safety.

Research Interests: His introduction to research began as an undergrad in an animal behavior lab while working with stomatopods and octopus, taking him to distant places such as Mo’orea, French Polynesia. After graduating from Cal, he joined researchers at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, M.D. to study the effects of Helicobacter pylori in a murine model. As a RWJF scholar, he will conduct outcomes-based studies in surgery to improve patient safety and policy. 

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