Highlights, News, and Notes from the Department of Medicine

Send your news and notes for this section to Jonathan Meyer at JMeyer4@nshs.edu


 ”Replicating changes in hand hygiene in a surgical intensive care unit with remote video auditing and feedback” is the subject of a report in American Journal of Infection Control by Donna Armellino, RN, Manish Trivedi, MD, Isabel Law, RN, Narendra Singh, MD, Mary Ellen Schilling, RN, Erfan Hussain, MD, and Bruce Farber, MD. 

 A recent issue of Journal of General Internal Medicine dedicated to medical education featured contributions by DoM faculty: Lauren Block, MD, collaborated on “In the wake of the 2003 and 2011 duty hours regulations, how do internal medicine interns spend their time?”, which was then featured in AMA News, and Saima Chaudhry, MD,  Sandy Balwan, MD, Karen Friedman, MD, and Deborah DiMisa, MS, collaborated on “Moving forward in GME reform: A 4 + 1 model of resident ambulatory training”.  

Dr. Sandy Balwan also presented a poster, “Transitional care: A novel, narrative initiative” at this year’s meeting of the Association of Program Directors in Internal Medicine (APDIM) and was awarded a Mini-Fellowship in Geriatrics Education and Career Development from the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation. 

Joseph Conigliaro, MD, MPH, wrote a chapter on teamwork and communication for an upcoming text published by Springer: Patient Safety: A Case-Based Comprehensive Guide. He also collaborated on an abstract for the 36th annual meeting of the Society of General Internal Medicine that was published in Journal of General Internal Medicine

Betty Diamond, MD, Peter K. Gregersen, MD, and others published on work they jointly directed: “CSK regulatory polymorphism is associated with systemic lupus erythematosus and influences B cell signaling and activation” in Nature Genetics

Steve Fishbane, MD, Chief of the Division of Kidney Diseases and Hypertension, published several articles in recent months: “Treating desmopressin-induced hyponatremia: a case using hypertonic saline” in Clinical Nephrology; “Subgroup analyses in nephrology clinical trials” (with Hitesh Shah, MD, also of the Division) in Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology; and “Changes to the end-stage renal disease quality incentive program” and “A physician's perseverance uncovers problems in a key nephrology study” in Kidney International

Dr. Shah also collaborated with Kenar Jhaveri, MD, on the first published paper in the medical literature to describe and evaluate the role of evidence-based debates during nephrology fellowship training: “Evidence-based nephrology-rheumatology debates: a novel educational experience during nephrology fellowship training” in Renal Failure

Nick Fitterman, MD, collaborated on a clinical practice guideline, “Treatment of Anemia in Patients with Heart Disease: A Clinical Practice Guideline From the American College of Physicians,” published in Annals of Internal Medicine in December 2013. 

Jamuna Karkhanis, MD, is first author on the paper, “Steroid use in acute liver failure,” published in Hepatology, Volume 59, Issue 2, February 2014.  The other authors on the paper are Elizabeth C. Verna, Matthew S. Chang, R. Todd Stravitz, Michael Schilsky, William M. Lee, Robert S. Brown Jr.  The paper was written for the Acute Liver Failure Study Group at the University of Texas Southwestern. 

Seymour Katz, MD was senior author on “Increased hospitalizations in elderly with inflammatory bowel disease on anti-tumor necrosis factor therapy but not increased infections:  A community practice experience,” published January 2014 in Journal of Crohn’s and Colitis.  Dr. Katz was an author on an additional 13 articles in 2013 and an additional 3 more published in 2014. 

Department Chair Thomas McGinn, MD, MPH, and Administrative Director of Clinical Research Lauren McCullagh, MPH, collaborated with other experts on a groundbreaking article that garnered significant media attention, including prominent mentions in Reuters and Medscape. “Efficacy of an evidence-based clinical decision support in primary care practices: a randomized clinical trial” was published in JAMA Internal Medicine (formerly known as Archives of Internal Medicine). 

In order to promote its annual conference, the American College of Chest Physicians selected several newsworthy abstracts to highlight for reporters via press releases and media interviews. Among them: a recent article in Chest by Margarita Oks, MD, Rubin Cohen, MD, Seth Koenig, MD, and Mangala Narasimhan, DO, titled “The use of point of care ultrasound in the medical intensive care unit reduces healthcare cost and patient radiation exposure”. 

An article on spontaneous clearance of Hepatitis B surface antigenemia after long-term hemodialysis was recently published in Seminars in Dialysis by Chinmay Patel, MD, Divya Monga, MD, Mohini Alexander, MD, Sandeep Magoon, MD, and David Bernstein, MD. 

David Rosenberg, MD, published a paper in Clinical Therapeutics on the role of the hospitalist in antimicrobial stewardship, reviewing completed work and describing an innovative multisite collaboration. 

As a member of the Standards of Practice Committee of the American Society of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ASGE), Ravi Sharaf, MD, has collaborated on a number of practice guidelines, including one on adverse events associated with EUS and EUS with FNA. Dr. Sharaf also collaborated on a recent article in American Journal of Gastroenterology, “Comparative effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of screening colonoscopy vs. sigmoidoscopy and alternative strategies”. 

Alex Spyropoulos, MD, director of North Shore-LIJ’s System-wide Anticoagulation Service, published on practical issues, limitations, and management of the novel oral anticoagulants in a recent issue of Journal of Thrombosis and Thrombolysis and on “Thromboprophylaxis patterns, risk factors, and outcomes of care in medically ill patients,” in Thrombosis Research.  He also published two recent articles in the New England Journal of Medicine on antithrombotic therapy for invasive procedures and rivaroxaban for thromboprophylaxis in acutely-ill medical patients. 

Bettie M. Steinberg, MD, and Vincent R. Bonagura, MD, were co-authors on “TH2-like chemokine patterns correlate with disease severity in patients with recurrent respiratory papillomatosis” for Molecular Medicine.


Sandy Balwan, MD, is one of the recipients of this year’s “Teacher of the Year” Award.

Myra F. Barginear, MD, received a junior investigator travel award to an NIH U13 conference. The award funded 10 young investigators to attend the second conference on Geriatric Oncology Research to Improve Clinical Care in November, 2013. 

Tracy Breen, MD, and Marie Frazzitta, NP, are recipients of an Abbott Award for innovation in diabetes education. 

Frank Cacace, MD, has received a Patients' Choice Award in recognition of excellence in patient-centered care as reflected in consistently high patient ratings over 12 months. 

Betty Diamond, MD, recently provided the U.S. Congress with a briefing on the effects of health and racial disparities in lupus 

Steve Fishbane, MD, was honored as Nephrologist of the Year by the American Kidney Foundation. 

The Association for Medical Education in Europe (AMEE) presented Kenar Jhaveri, MD, with the Miriam Friedman Ben-David Award, for those deemed to have made a significant contribution to teaching in a relatively short time. 

Seymour Katz, MD, received the CCNY Presidential Lifetime Achievement Award for his work behind the Bronx Science – CCNY Scholarship Project, which Dr. Katz chairs.  It provides full scholarships to high-achieving Bronx Science graduates who attend City College. He was one of four honorees at the most recent City College President’s Gala.  Since its inception in 2005, the project has supported 86 students. “Ultimately, every person with ability, should have opportunity,” said Dr. Katz when referencing this work. 

Howard Kerpen, MD, has been named the year’s Outstanding Volunteer Clinical Teacher Award by the American College of Physicians. 

Congratulations to the Divisions of Rheumatology, Sleep Medicine, and Geriatric & Palliative Medicine: the fellowship programs for all three were recently approved by ACGME for 10 years.   

Arrivals and Moves

Alessandro Bellucci, MD, was appointed to the position of Executive Director of North Shore University Hospital, where he directs all elements of the hospital’s missions. North Shore is the largest hospital in the North Shore – LIJ Health System. Prior to this position, Dr. Bellucci was Executive Vice Chair of the Department of Medicine and Medical Director of North Shore University Hospital. 

Lauren Block, MD joined the Department in July 2013 to work on development and evaluation of Hofstra North Shore-LIJ School of Medicine’s innovative undergraduate and graduate curricula. 

Marcus Friedrich, MD, MBA, joined the Department of Medicine in July 2013 as Associate Director of the Primary Care Service Line.  Dr. Friedrich earned an MD from the University of Miami and completed his residency training at North Shore – LIJ Health System.  He served as an Administrative Fellow for the Health System from 2012 – 2013, prior to joining the Department. 

Fran Ganz-Lord, MD, joined the Department of Medicine in March 2014 from Weill Cornell Internal Medicine Associates.  Dr. Fran A. Ganz-Lord did her undergraduate training at Amherst College, graduated AOA from Tufts University School of Medicine in 1999, and completed her medical training in Internal Medicine at the New York Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Campus in 2002. After spending a year on faculty at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Dr. Ganz-Lord returned to Weill Cornell to join the Associates practice in 2003.  Dr. Ganz-Lord is one of the Department’s leaders in the area of ambulatory care quality. 

Michael Gitman, MD, was appointed Medical Director of North Shore University Hospital in February 2014.  Dr. Gitman, a nephrologist, had been Vice Chair for Academic Affairs and Quality in the Department of Medicine and Associate Medical Director for North Shore University Hospital. 

Meron Kristos, MD, joined the Department of Medicine in September as a full time internist in the Division of General Internal Medicine, from St. Luke’s Cornwall Medical Group in Cornwall, NY.  Dr. Kristos is board certified in both internal medicine and infectious diseases.  She completed her residency and fellowship in primary care at St. Vincent Catholic Medical Center in Manhattan and a fellowship in infectious disease at St. Vincent Catholic Medical Center and Mount Sinai Medical Center. 

Warren Licht, MD, joined the Department of Medicine in September 2013 as Director of Strategic Initiatives for the Department.  Dr. Licht is an internist, trained at Georgetown University School of Medicine, and has served as Medical Director at New York Downtown Hospital before joining the Department of Medicine. 

Mariecel Pilapil, MD, joined the Department of Medicine in July 2013 from Mount Sinai Medical Center, where she completed her residency as Chief Resident of Internal Medicine-Pediatrics.  Dr. Pilapil spends half her time as a clinician in pediatrics/adolescent medicine and the other half in adult medicine.  Dr. Pilapil’s skill set supports the Health System’s mission to bridge the continuum of care from childhood through adulthood.  She received her BA from Harvard University and her MD from Mount Sinai School of Medicine.