Resident and Fellow Appreciation Week

The Residents and Fellows at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai are the best and the brightest in the nation. For Resident and Fellow Appreciation Week, we are delighted to celebrate those who contribute to delivering quality patient care at Mount Sinai Health System.

At Mount Sinai, we provide our residents and fellows with the support, knowledge and clinical experience needed to flourish as highly skilled physicians and clinicians in the health care field. This year, our residents were put to the test with the demands of a global pandemic. Despite these challenges, our residents and fellows remained resilient and determined. With the help of our residents and fellows, we were able to conquer this challenging time.

Resident and Fellow Appreciation Week is a way for Mount Sinai to foster an environment of support, camaraderie and overall well-being among residents and fellows. Thank you for the work that you do. It makes a difference.

Your residency and fellowship is a once in a lifetime experience that only your peers can understand. Learn more about the experiences of the residents and fellows at the Icahn School of Medicine.

To help mark Resident and Fellow Appreciation Week and acknowledge the innumerable challenges physicians-in-training faced during a year marked by COVID, we asked resident and fellow leaders to reflect on the past year and share their perspective on a few questions.

Below are some insights from Katie Dunleavy, MD, a PGY3 Internal Medicine Resident at Mount Sinai Hospital and President of the Mount Sinai Hospital House Staff Council and Veronica Peschansky, MD, PHD, a PGY4 Neurology Resident at Mount Sinai Hospital and Vice President of the Mount Sinai Hospital House Staff Council.

image of healthcare professional

image of healthcare professional

As we come to the close of the 2020-21 Academic Year and you think back on the past year, can you describe a moment in your work as a physician that you found particularly meaningful?
Dunleavy: I strive to find meaning in my work every day, whether it be a shared joke with a patient, a laugh with a colleague or a meaningful connection with a patient and their family. COVID has made this more difficult and more crucial to my daily work. I remember a NYC snowstorm this year, the streets were lined with snow and as I made my way into the hospital for a night shift, I wondered how the night would unfold. I was amazed by the nostalgic effect the weather had on my patient interactions that evening. As the snow fell over the lights of NYC, patients shared stories of snowstorms, happy childhood memories and harrowing road trip adventures. These memories brought me back to my own happy snow-filled memories of college in Middlebury, VT. This evening reminded me that every shift has the potential for magic, every patient the potential for connection and joy.

Peschansky: It happens all the time. Being the physician that can explain a diagnosis or plan to patients or families in such a way that they understand and buy in, is one of the most rewarding moments for me. It can be something simple (how dehydration and lack of sleep can worsen a migraine) or complex (the effect of the immune system on myelinated nerve fibers), but I cherish the ability to find the right words for the situation and see them 'click.'

During a week in which we show appreciation for Residents and Fellows, can you share a moment when a resident or fellow in your own program (or another program) inspired you?
Dunleavy: I am constantly amazed by the work of my fellow house staff at Mount Sinai Hospital. The innovation of colleagues to find solutions instead of divides, and passion instead of commiseration is quite remarkable. The advent of "House Staff Appreciation Week" and "Resident/Fellow of the Month" came from a thoughtful effort through GME and House Staff Council to shine a light on these efforts. As an Internal Medicine resident during COVID, we have seen our job description change on a daily basis. The fast pace of change was both invigorating and tiresome, a balance we all struggled to keep. When I think back to the moments and people that inspired me, it has been the Internal Medicine residents at Mount Sinai Hospital who keep pushing forward to create a moment of excellence. Thank you for caring for each other as much as you care for our patients.

Peschansky: I am lucky to work with co-residents who go the extra mile. My colleagues continually set the example that one more family conversation, just a few more minutes of reading or that extra phone call to a consultant can make a difference in patient care even on the busiest of days. When we see each other doing that extra bit, we are always willing to step in and ask 'how can I help you get this done,' even if it's not strictly our responsibility.

Mount Sinai logo artwork

“Hope Springs at Sinai” (Katie Dunleavy, MD) This year is like a garden recovering from a season of frost. Beautiful things can grow from broken soil. The promise of new beginnings, the delight of fresh blossoms and the fragrant aroma of hope.

If we were to bury a box in Central Park for other physicians in training to dig up in 50 years, what are three things you would tell them about the unique challenges of training as a resident or fellow during a pandemic?
Dunleavy: My first instinct would be to bury a N95 for safekeeping (just kidding!). I’d include a copy of Ruthven’s “Essential Examination” and ask them to keep the art of physical exam alive, one I learned dearly and wholeheartedly as a medical student at The Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland. I’d include a guide to telemedicine, so they could ponder our earnest attempts at what would surely be a dated technology by then. I would include the NY Times front page article, “U.S. Deaths Near 100,000, An Incalculable Loss” from May 24, 2020 as a reminder of the insurmountable loss from the COVID-19 pandemic and an acknowledgement of the effect of the pandemic on our residency training, our mental health and the future of medicine. I’d also include the New Yorker magazine cover from November 16, 2020, Pascal Campion’s “Hope Again” highlighting a poignant change in US history following the election of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris to office and the promise of hope amidst a crisis of conscious.

Peschansky: Physicians are always bumping up against the edge of the unknown - even after thousands of years and improvement rapidly, every specialty deals with mystery cases. Then imagine a new and infectious disease, spreading rapidly, and trainees at the forefront of its treatment daily! There was no expert attending to turn to. We trusted in our observations and our colleagues and adapted minute to minute. As a resident, you have a special relationship with your colleagues. In the best of years, it is a trying, but shared experience, both in terms of clinical experiences and in how it shapes your personal growth. Now imagine being cut off from that group - barely seeing your friends' faces when you need that smile most, unable to share a bonding session due to distancing. We made do with Zoom and texting, but missed the hugs and moments outside of work together. Our learning was affected too. When one condition colors every differential diagnosis for the better part of a year, when conferences are all remote, when treatment is delayed or restricted - we see medicine in a different light than generations before us. We tried to remember this is not the norm.

Can you describe what training at Mount Sinai has meant to you in your development as a physician? Any words of wisdom for those new trainees that will be joining us in the coming weeks?
Dunleavy: Mount Sinai Hospital has made me the physician I am today. I never imagined the trials and tribulations I would face as a resident during a global pandemic, but the lessons I’ve learned will stay with me throughout my career. As I move forward to fellowship in Gastroenterology, I know I am capable of embracing uncertainty to foster a learning environment that allows me to thrive. Strong female leaders like Barbara Murphy, MD and Emily Gallagher, MD have shown me the strength of being a woman in medicine. I've learned to always do the right thing, even if it’s the harder or less liked thing. Quality patient care depends on your self-respect and it's important to take care of your people.

As you begin your next step into residency at Mount Sinai, I urge you to value connection and find flow in your work. Know you can always ask for more support. Cherish a world outside of medicine and find a place to escape. Take on new challenges, but learn your boundaries. When in doubt – see the patient, speak to the family member, call the attending and always ask for help when you need it. And please, always introduce yourself when you walk into a room :)

Peschansky: Mount Sinai is a treasure trove of experts and knowledge. Being surrounded by deeply committed, intelligent and hardworking colleagues pushed me to be better. The different practice sites - East Harlem/Upper East Side, Elmhurst, the Bronx - provided opportunities for service and to play an important role in the community through one of the most trying times in recent New York City history. The tenacity and creativity of Mount Sinai house staff is irreplaceable, and I hope to continue in that spirit.

The Alpha Omega Alpha (AOA) national medical honor society elects more than 4,000 students, residents and fellows each year. Congratulations to the following residents and fellows who were nominated and selected for AOA Membership this year. We received many impressive nominations from program directors and trainees throughout our Mount Sinai Health System. These individuals were selected for their longstanding contributions to medical student and house staff educational activities, outstanding mentorship and scholarship and commitment to both clinical care and institutional and community service.
 
While the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai (ISMMS) does not currently participate in medical student AOA selection, we continue to nominate faculty, residents and fellows.
 
The selected individuals will be celebrated in a virtual induction ceremony on Tuesday, June 1 at 5:00pm.

     
Benjamin Bier, MD
Cardiovascular Disease
Mount Sinai Hospital
Benjamin Hyers, MD
Anesthesiology
Mount Sinai Hospital
Kate Pawloski, MD
Preventive Medicine
Mount Sinai Hospital
Ayisha Buckley, MD
Maternal Fetal Medicine
Mount Sinai Hospital
Michael Kaplan, MD
Rheumatology
Mount Sinai Hospital
Jonathan Ramin, DO
Sports Medicine
Mount Sinai Hospital
Matthew Dai, MD
Internal Medicine
Mount Sinai Hospital
Rabeea Khan, MD
Occupational Medicine
Mount Sinai Hospital
Frederick Rozenshteyn, MD
Internal Medicine
Mount Sinai Beth Israel
Scott Ellis, MD
Surgery
Mount Sinai Morningside/West
Youngiung Kim, MD
Psychiatry
Mount Sinai Hospital
Zachary Schwam, MD
Otolaryngology
Mount Sinai Hospital
Zoe Gottlieb, MD/strong>
Gastroenterology
Mount Sinai Hospital
Jaclyn Klimczak, MD
Otolaryngology
Mount Sinai Hospital
Risako Shirane, MD, MSc
Neurology
Mount Sinai Beth Israel
Isabel Guerrido Martinez, MD
Internal Medicine
Mount Sinai Beth Israel
Lauren Lisann-Goldman, MD
Anesthesiology
Mount Sinai Morningside/West
Alexis Tchaconas, MD
Internal Medicine/Pediatrics
Mount Sinai Hospital
Dhruv Gupta, MD
Psychiatry
Health+Hospitals/Elmhurst
Shane Murray, MBBS
Internal Medicine
Mount Sinai Morningside/West
Ramyashree Tummala, MBBS
Cardiovascular Disease
Mount Sinai Beth Israel
Ali Haidar, MD
Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
Mount Sinai Hospital
Barat Narasimhan, MD
Internal Medicine
Mount Sinai Morningside/West
Jennifer Watchmaker, MD, PHD
Interventional Radiology
Mount Sinai Hospital
Krupa Harishankar, MD
Obstetrics and Gynecology
Mount Sinai Hospital
Bijal Parkh, MD
Obstetrics and Gynecology
Mount Sinai Morningside/West
 

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On Friday, June 4, the Office of Graduate Medical Education will host the 12th Annual GME Consortium Research Day, highlighting resident/fellow scholarly work from across the ISMMS GME Consortium. Over 200 posters will be presented during Poster Rounds online via Morressier from 11:30am-1:00pm and 1:30pm-3:00pm. Prizes will be awarded in a variety of categories.

The Research Day Site can be accessed here.

Congratulations to the following residents and fellows who were selected to give Oral Presentations on June 4 from 9:45am-11:15am via Zoom.

Haoli Jin, MD, Allergy and Immunology, Mount Sinai Hospital
“Probing the Pathogenic Pathway of Elevated BAFF in Complex Common Variable Immunodeficiency”.

Kate Pawloski, MD, Preventive Medicine, Mount Sinai Hospital
“Risk Factors for SARS-CoV-2 Infection in Resident Physicians and Fellows in New York City during the First COVID-19 Wave”.

Yasmina Zoghbi, MD, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Mount Sinai Hospital
”Do Words Matter? A Linguistic Analysis of Letters of Recommendation for Residency”

Samuel Ruder, MD, Internal Medicine, Mount Sinai Hospital
“Development and Validation of a Quantitative Reactive Stroma Biomarker (qRS) for Prostate Cancer Prognosis”

Bing Chen, MD, Internal Medicine, Mount Sinai Morningside and West
“The Role of Treatment Of Hepatitis C With Direct-Acting Antiviral Agents On Glycemic Control In Diabetic Patients: A Systematic Review And Meta-Analysis”.

Santiago Thibaud, MD, Hematology and Medical Oncology, Mount Sinai Hospital
“Heritable Cancer Mutations In Multiple Myeloma”.

image of residents and fellows of the month

During the 2020-21 Academic Year, the Office of Graduate Medical Education began a monthly program to solicit peer nominations from residents and fellows in Mount Sinai Health System programs. These nominations are reviewed monthly by a committee comprised of GME physician leaders with nominations in categories including service to their peers; service to patients and/or families; and educational efforts or scholarly performance.

Over 300 nominations have been received with the following residents and fellows awarded over the past few months.

   
Seung Eun (Grace) Lee, MD
Resident (PGY3)
Internal Medicine
Mount Sinai Hospital
Hannibal Person, MD
Fellow (PGY6)
Pediatric Gastroenterology
Mount Sinai Hospital
Elisabet Pujadas, MD, PHD
Resident (PGY2)
Pathology
Mount Sinai Hospital
Justin Poon, MD
Fellow (PGY5)
Pulmonary Disease and Critical Care Medicine
Mount Sinai Morningside/West
Luis Seija, MD
Resident (PGY2)
Internal Medicine/Pediatrics
Mount Sinai Hospital
Jonathan Feld, MD
Fellow (PGY6)
Hematology and Medical Oncology
Mount Sinai Hospital
Dania Goodin, MD
Resident (PGY3)
Emergency Medicine
Mount Sinai Hospital
Pouya Mojajer, MD
Fellow (PGY5)
Cardiovascular Disease
Mount Sinai Beth Israel
Hirotaka Miyashita, MD
Resident (PGY2)
Internal Medicine
Mount Sinai Beth Israel
Caitlyn Kuwata, MD
Fellow (PGY5)
Geriatrics and Palliative Medicine
Mount Sinai Hospital
Saritha Kosarussavadi, MD, MS
Resident (PGY2)
Neurology
Mount Sinai Hospital
Judith Matthieu, MD
Fellow (PGY7)
Pediatric Critical Care
Mount Sinai Hospital
Sara Zalcgendler, MD
Resident (PGY2)
Internal Medicine
Mount Sinai Morningside/West
Solomon Bienstock, MD
Fellow (PGY4)
Cardiovascular Disease
Mount Sinai Hospital