Highlights, News, and Notes from the Department of Medicine

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


Dr. Nick Fitterman and colleagues who serve on the Clinical Guidelines Committee of the American College of Physicians recently (Annals of Internal Medicine September 2015) published     best practice clinical guidelines for the evaluation of patients with suspected acute pulmonary embolism.

Drs. Steve Allen and Kanti Rai are co-authors on a recent publication in the October 19, 2015 issue of Leukemia and Lymphoma describing the results of a phase 1 clinical trial of a novel anti-CD20 antibody, veltuzumab, in CLL.

Dr. Alex Spyropoulos and colleagues, including many who are faculty at Hofstra University North Shore LIJ Medical School, recently published the results of     the BRIDGE clinical trial in the New England Journal of Medicine (August 2015; 373:823-833). The results of this ground-breaking trial will be practice-changing in periprocedural antithrombotic therapy.

Drs. Patricia Mongini, Rashmi Gupta, Erin Boyle, Jennifer Nieto, Hyunjoo Lee, Joanna Stein, Jela Bandovic, Tatjana Stankovic, Jacqueline Barrientos, Jonathan E. Kolitz, Steve Allen, Kanti Rai, Charles Chu and Nicholas Chiorazzi, of the Feinstein Institute, recently published the results of their study showing that TLR-9 and IL-15 synergy promotes the in vitro clonal expansion of chronic lymphocytic leukemia B cells. The Journal of Immunology. August 2015; 195(3):901-923.    

Our Department Chairman, Dr. Thomas McGinn was invited to be a guest editor of the recent eGEMs (Generating Evidence & Methods to improve patient outcomes) special issue [volume 3 (2015), issue 2] entitled “Evidence into Action: Improving User Interface to Improve Patient Outcomes.” Dr. McGinn is the author of one of the 11 research papers in this issue, entitled “CDS, UX, and System Redesign – Promising Techniques and Tools to Bridge the Evidence Gap.” eGEMs are publications of AcademyHealth’s EDM (Evidence, Data, & Methods to Build Learning Health Systems of the Future) Forum, which drives rapid collaboration among researchers and diverse stakeholders who create data, methods and evidence to shape the next generation of learning health systems.


Congratulations to Dr. Divyesh Sejpal for winning a $63,900.00 award for his Investigator-Sponsored Research study entitled “Role of Cholangioscopy to Detect Missed Bile Duct Stones” from the Boston Scientific Endoscopy Grant Committee.

Dr. Ruthee-Lu Bayer, Director of the Don Monti Bone Marrow Tranplant Unit, was elected Chair of the Tri-State Transplant Consortium.

The Division of Geriatric and Palliative Medicine at North Shore-LIJ, under the direction of Dr. Maria Carney was designated by the Center to Advance Palliative Care as a national Palliative Care Leadership Center™ (PCLC). These centers provide intensive, operational training and yearlong mentoring for palliative care programs at every stage of development and growth. Established by the Center to Advance Palliative Care and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation in 2004, PCLC has trained well over half of the nation′s hospital palliative care programs.

Drs. Linda Kurian, Nayla Idriss and Danish Ahmad, members of the hospitalist-led invasive procedure team at North Shore LIJ, were chosen by Society of Hospital Medicine to give an oral presentation on a novel approach to large volume paracentesis at the 2015 Annual Society of Hospital Medicine Conference in National Harbor, Maryland.

Dr. Bradley Flansbaum was elected as a Master of Hospital Medicine at the Society of Hospital Medicine conference in May 2015. This is a highly prestigious title held by less than 20 people in the world.

The American Academy of Home Care Medicine named Kristofer Smith, MD, MPP the 2015 House Call Educator of the Year. This award is the highest honor bestowed by the Academy. Dr. Smith was nominated by his peers in recognition of his pioneering efforts in bringing house calls back into the medical care mainstream.

The North Shore-LIJ Health System and the Physician Leadership Institute are proud to announce the start of a one-year Physician Administrative Fellowship Program in July 2015. This program is designed to empower young physicians to take on administrative leadership roles within the health system while meeting the organization’s mission of providing outstanding patient care within our community. Two fellows were chosen for 2015-2016: Ankita Sagar, MD, MPH, currently Chief Medical Resident at the North Shore-LIJ Health System Internal Medicine Residency Program, and Baturalp Baserdem, MD, MPA, who is currently finishing his Internal Medicine Residency at North Shore-LIJ Health System’s Lenox Hill Hospital.

Dr. Vincent Vinciguerra, a PI for the North Shore LIJ Health System NCORP project was recently awarded on behalf of the Feinstien Institute for Medical Research an additional $100,000.00 by the NIH. The NCORP grant funds multiple NIH Phase III Clinical Trials to investigate, among other topics, the Inclusion of Women and Minorities as Subjects in Clinical Research.

Dr. Sherry Farzan was awarded the Foundation of the ACAAI Young Faculty Support Award for 2014-2015.

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.