January 27, 2023 - Improving Advance Care Planning Among Advance Cancer Patients
Megan J. Shen, PhD - Improving Advance Care Planning Among Advanced Cancer Patients, 1-27-2023
Megan Shen is a social psychologist and an Associate Professor at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center. She received her PhD from Baylor University, followed by a postdoctoral fellowship at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and faculty appointment at the Center for Research on End-of-Life Care at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City. Her research focuses on health communication and decision-making, looking at how our cultural and social environments influence how we interpret information and make decisions around advance care and end-of-life planning. Much of her research focuses on understanding and developing tools to support patients and families in making informed healthcare decisions at the end of life and coping with advanced illness. She has received numerous NCI awards as PI, including a K07 Career Award, R01/R37 MERIT award, numerous R21s, and a SBIR R44 Fast Track. Her work and contributions have been recognized by the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine (AAHPM) as a Research Scholar. Dr. Shen has a strong passion for communicating her science to the public, and her writing has appeared in multiple outlets such as HuffPost, the Hill Reporter, Invisible Magazine, and the Thinking Republic. She is a regular contributor to Harvard's Bill of Health Blog and has a column at Psychology Today entitled, "How to Grow Hope."
February 10, 2023 - Patient Safety Round Table: Suicide Risk Management in the Outpatient Setting
Julia Kulikowski, MD - Patient Safety Round Table: Suicide Risk Management in the Outpatient Setting, 2-10-2023
Julia Kulikowski, MD is a clinical fellow in Psycho-Oncology at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. She pursued medical school at Ross University School of Medicine and went on to complete residency in psychiatry at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. Throughout residency, she contributed to textbooks with chapters on various topics including psychiatric disorders within the renal patient, differentiating serotonin syndrome, neuroleptic malignant syndrome, and catatonia as well as physician wellness and gender considerations in medicine
Farah Tabaja, MD - Patient Safety Round Table: Suicide Risk Management in the Outpatient Setting, 2-10-2023
Farah Tabaja, MD is a clinical fellow in Psycho-Oncology at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. Farah completed medical school at the American University of Beirut in 2016, then worked as a postdoctoral research fellow in child and adolescent psychiatry at the same institution, focusing on implementing a CBT-based program for building emotional resilience in middle school students.
February 24, 2023 - Psychedelics in Psycho-Oncology: Review of the Evidence and Hypotheses on Mechanism of Action
Christion Bjerre Real, MD, MMCI - Psychedelics in Psycho-Oncology: Review of the Evidence and Hypotheses on Mechanisms of Action, 2-24-2023
Dr. Bjerre Real is psychiatrist and psycho-oncologist. Danish Ecuadorian, Dr. Bjerre Real earned his M.D. at the Catholic University of Guayaquil in Ecuador. He then attended Duke University, where he completed his psychiatry residency, served as chief resident, and obtained a graduate degree in Management and Clinical informatics. He also pursued a clinical and research fellowship in Psycho-Oncology/Consultation-Liaison Psychiatry at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. Dr. Bjerre Real has published and presented on palliative care, psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy, psycho-oncology, and delirium. Showing significant promise to impact the fields of psychiatry and psychosomatic medicine, he has earned both the Laughlin and Webb fellowships from the American College of Psychiatrists and the Academy of Consultation-Liaison Psychiatry, respectively. Dr. Bjerre Real recently founded the Psycho-Oncology outpatient clinic “Alta Psychiatry PLLC”, where he provides psychological and psychiatric interventions to alleviate suffering in the cancer population. He serves as a consultant and advisor in the implementation and education relating Psychedelic assisted psychotherapy in several academic and private institutions.
March 10, 2023 - From Hidden Habits to Hopeful Healing: Screening for Substance Use Disorders (SUD) at MSKCC
Jagannath Nayak, MD - From Hidden Habits to Hopeful Healing: Screening for Substance Use Disorders (SUD) at MSKCC, 3-10-2023
Jagannath Nayak, MD is a clinical Fellow in Psycho-Oncology at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. Jaga completed medical school at the University of California San Diego in 2018. He went on to complete residency in Psychiatry at Arrowhead Regional Medical Center in Colton, CA. Jaga served as chief resident during his final year of residency. He took special interest in forensics and substance abuse treatment during his final year of residency.
Amit Batta, MD - From Hidden Habits to Hopeful Healing: Screening for Substance Use Disorders (SUD) at MSKCC, 3-10-2023
Amit Batta, MD completed his undergraduate degree in Neuroscience from the University of Southern California before attending medical school at Touro in Harlem. He completed his psychiatry residency at Maimonides Medical Center in Brooklyn where he participated in research on trauma in patients with aortic disease. As chief resident, Amit focused on physician wellness and medical student education. He completed the two-year psychotherapy training program at the Psychoanalytic Association of New York. Amit is an active member of the Academy of Consultation-Liaison Psychiatry, including its regional chapter in NYC, the SLP. Currently, he serves as a consultation-liaison psychiatry fellow at Memorial Sloan Kettering. His interests include music, reading, food, travel, and supporting the Lakers (even when they’re disappointing).
March 24, 2023 - Understanding patient - provider communication in the context of health disparities for minoritized cancer patients
Richard F Brown PhD - Understanding patient - provider communication in the context of health disparities for minoritized cancer patients, 3-24-2023
Richard F Brown Ph.D. is a tenured Associate Professor in the Department of Health Behavior and Policy in the School of Medicine at VCU. Dr Brown has researched communication interventions to aid both physicians and patients during oncology consultations. His patient focused work has included developing and testing patient interventions such as questions prompt lists and decisions aids. His oncologist-focused work has involved communication skills training development and implementation. Dr Brown has developed specific research programs that explore patient-physician interactions around clinical trial and health disparities that exist for minoritized cancer patients including inequities that exist for African American cancer patients, Sexual and Gender Minorities cancer patients and rural cancer patients.
April 7, 2023 - Bedside Manners: Improving Hospital Based Practice by Addressing Incivility in Patients and their Families
Gabriella Riley, MD, MBA - Bedside Manners: Improving Hospital Based Practice by Addressing Incivility in Patients and their Families, 4-7-2023
Gabriella Riley, MD, MBA is originally from Boston, but moved to NYC several years ago to attend college at Fordham University, where she graduated summa cum laude in Middle Eastern Studies and Psychology. She then went to NYU for medical school, during which she won the Herman Wortis Award for excellence in Psychiatry and Neurology. During medical school, Gabriella also pursued a Masters in Business Administration from Leonard N. Stern School of Business at NYU, with a concentration in team management. Gabriella stayed at NYU for psychiatry residency and was involved in numerous committees regarding residency improvements as well as institution-wide quality and safety. She co-authored several papers regarding breast cancer survivorship as well as gave grand rounds on the intersection of online dating and rejection sensitivity. During residency Gabriella also completed the Psychoanalytic Association of New York (PANY) Fellowship in Psychoanalysis and the New York Psychoanalytic Society and Institute (NYPSI) Fellowship in Psychoanalysis. She became a psychiatrist to work in the psycho-oncology setting and has loved her time at MSKCC. Gabriella is an amateur actor and has been in several small productions in NYC. She enjoys reading Agatha Christie novels, playing video games, and hanging out with her husband and cat.
Amvrine Ganguly, MBBS, MD - Bedside Manners: Improving Hospital Based Practice by Addressing Incivility in Patients and their Families, 4-7-2023
Amvrine Ganguly, MBBS, MD is currently one of our clinical fellows in the Department of Consultation-Liaison Psychiatry, After doing his medical school and training in India he finished his Adult Psychiatry Residency from SUNY Downstate , NY and then matched into this program. Dr. Ganguly has been a winner of the 2019 NY state best Resident award paper competition, and has represented his residency program consistently in MINDGAMES, the annual APA residency competition. Chief interests within Psychiatry, include Phenomenology, Logotherapy & the interaction of Cancer and the Psyche.
April 21, 2023 - Racism Not Disrupted Becomes Racial Trauma Transferred
Linda Mathew, DSW, LCSW-R - Racism Not Disrupted Becomes Racial Trauma Transferred, 4-21-2023
Dr. Linda Mathew has over 22 years of psycho-oncology experience. She is Social Work Manager to three MSK ambulatory sites. She supervises and mentors a team of seven social workers. She co-leads the Social Work Department’s Antiracism Committee. She has specialized training cognitive behavioral therapy, meaning centered psychotherapy and palliative care. She served on the board for the Association of Oncology Social Workers. Dr. Mathew earned her Master of Social Work degree in 2001 and her Doctor of Clinical Social Work in 2023 from NYU. She is a mentor and part-time faculty member of NYU Silver School of Social Work’s Zelda Foster Palliative and End-of-Life Program. Dr. Mathew is a clinician who is dedicated to developing an anti-racist practice within psycho-oncology care.
May 19, 2023 - Implementing and Embodying Antiracist Approaches to Improve Behavioral Health in Adolescent and Young Adult Oncology
Christabel K. Cheung, PhD, MSW - Implementing and Embodying Antiracist Approaches to Improve Behavioral Health in Adolescent and Young Adult Oncology, 5-19-2023
Christabel K. Cheung, PhD, MSW is an Assistant Professor at the University of Maryland School of Social Work and Member of the University of Maryland Greenebaum Comprehensive Cancer Center. Dr. Cheung’s research focuses on the psychosocial issues of cancer survivorship among adolescent and young adult (AYA) cancer patients (diagnosed between ages 15-39 years according to the National Cancer Institute) in the domains of disparities and social determinants of health and mental health, financial hardship and disability, antiracist and gender-affirming patient engagement, and embodied research methods. As a social and behavioral scientist in pursuit of these interests, she has led research projects as principal investigator and co-investigator and contributed to numerous cancer care optimization, patient education, and advocacy initiatives aimed at improving health and behavioral mental health outcomes. Other research activities include participation as faculty affiliate at AYA CAncer REsearch (AYA CARE), the research arm of the AYA Oncology Program at Michigan Medicine, member of the MELD Research Group for the Los Angeles Cancer Surveillance Program at the University of Southern California, Member of the Scientific Advisory Board of the STRONG Adolescent and Young Adult (AYA) Core Outcomes Set (COS) Study at The Netherlands Cancer Institute, and collaborating member at the University of Hawaii Cancer Center, where she was previously special member of their Minority Underserved National Cancer Institute (NCI) Community Oncology Program (NCORP).
Dr. Cheung contributes as teaching faculty for the NCI-funded Minority Training Program in Cancer Control Research (MTPCCR) and the NCI-funded Nathan Schnaper Internship Program (NSIP) in Translational Cancer Research. She has also previously served as AYA Patient Research Advocate for the NCI-funded SWOG Cancer Research Network, aimed at designing and conducting multidisciplinary cancer clinical trials. Dr. Cheung’s experience in academia includes serving on the field education faculty at the University of California Berkeley’s School of Social Welfare. Additionally, she holds eight years of prior behavioral mental health clinical and management experience with her last direct practice role as executive director of San Francisco Village, a nonprofit organization within the national village movement for aging-in-place. As an embodied BIPOC AYA patient scientist, two-time survivor of cancer in the AYA years (Hodgkin lymphoma), and bone marrow transplant beneficiary, she is recognized for writing one of the first cancer blogs advocating for racially minoritized young adult patients, JadeGangster.com. She holds a Bachelor of Journalism from University of Missouri-Columbia, a Master of Social Welfare from University of California, Berkeley, and a PhD in Social Welfare from University of California, Los Angeles.
June 2, 2023 - Dignity, Intensive Caring and Reflections on Palliative End-of-Life Care
Harvey Max Chochinov, O.C., O.M., M.D., Ph.D., F.R.C.P.C., F.R.S.C., F.C.A.H.S. - Dignity, Intensive Caring and Reflections on Palliative End-of-Life Care, 6-2-2023
Dr. Harvey Max Chochinov is a Distinguished Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Manitoba and a Senior Scientist and Cancer Care Manitoba Research Institute. His research provides an empirical basis for understanding and addressing palliative and end-of-life care experiences for patients and their families. His more than 300 career publications have broached diverse topics such as depression, quality-of-life, suicide, vulnerability, spirituality, and existential distress towards end-of-life. He has also led a large program of research targeting issues related to dignity within the healthcare setting. He is the co-founder of the Canadian Virtual Hospice and co-editor of The Handbook of Psychiatry in Palliative Medicine (Oxford University Press). His latest book is entitled Dignity in Care: The Human Side of Medicine, published by Oxford University Press. He has been the recipient of numerous honors and awards, including the Canadian Medical Association’s highest recognition, the FNG Starr Award. He is an Order of Manitoba recipient and an Officer in the Order of Canada. In 2020 he was inducted into the Canadian Medical Hall of Fame.
September 15, 2023 - Improving Clinical and Family Communication Skills Across the Cancer Continuum
Carma L. Bylund, PhD - Improving clinical and family communication skills across the cancer continuum, 9-15-2023
Carma L. Bylund, PhD is Professor and Associate Chair of Education for the Department of Health Outcomes and Biomedical Informatics at the University of Florida College of Medicine. She leads education efforts for the Cancer Control and Population Sciences Program in the UF Health Cancer Center and is also the Founding Editor-in-Chief of PEC Innovation. Dr. Bylund’s research focuses on the development, implementation, and testing of communication interventions to improve clinical communication and health outcomes. She has been funded by the NIH as Principal Investigator and Co-Investigator on 17 grants, as well as multiple grants from non-profit organizations including The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and the State of Florida. She has published 170 peer-reviewed papers and edited three books on Health Communication. Dr. Bylund was a member of the Dept of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences for eight years. She was one of the founding faculty of the Comskil Program, and served as director of the program from 2009-2013, after which she spent four years in Doha Qatar leading Communication Skills Training and other medical education programs.
September 29, 2023 - Helping Couples Navigate Illness: Grief, loss and an uncertain future
Kaethe Weingarten, Ph.D. - Helping Couples Navigate Illness: Grief, loss and an uncertain future, 9-29-2023
Kaethe Weingarten, Ph.D., directs the Witness to Witness (W2W) Program for Migrant Clinicians Network. She was an Associate Clinical Professor of Psychology in the Department of Psychiatry at Children’s Hospital Boston and then Cambridge Health Alliance (1981-2017) and taught at the Family Institute of Cambridge (1982-2009), where she founded and directed the Program in Families, Trauma and Resilience. Internationally, she has taught in Africa, Australia, Canada, Europe, and New Zealand, where she was a Fulbright Specialist. Dr. Weingarten has given over 400 presentations and been a keynote speaker at numerous conferences. She serves on the editorial boards of five journals. In 2002 she was awarded the highest honor of the American Family Therapy Academy, the award for Distinguished Contribution to Family Theory and Practice. She has written about her work in six books (which she has authored or edited) and over 150 articles, chapters, and essays.
October 13, 2023 - Changing the Way We Communicate to Improve the Way LGBTQ Patients are Cared for With Serious Illness
Changing the way we communicate to improve the way LGBTQ patients are cared for with serious illness, 10-13-2023
Dr. Carey Candrian is an associate professor in the Division of General Internal Medicine at the University of Colorado School of Medicine. She is on the Board of Directors at GLMA: Health Professionals Advancing Health Equity and the Vice President for the Lesbian Health Fund. She received her MA in Organizational Communication and PhD in Health Communication from the University of Colorado. She completed post-doctoral training in Health Literacy from the Institute of Communication and Health at the University of Lugano, Switzerland. Dr. Candrian’s research examines how communication affects outcomes in healthcare -- and specifically how it impacts older lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) adults, and those who care for them. As a qualitative and community-based researcher, her goal is to effect change on an interaction and policy level so that older LGBTQ adults receive the support they and their loved ones want, when they need it most. Dr. Candrian’s work has been funded by the National Institute on Aging, the Cambia Health Foundation, The Colorado Health Foundation, The Colorado Trust, The Next50 Initiative and The Lesbian Health Fund. She has appeared on Colorado Public Radio, NPR’s Here and Now, PBS NewHour’s Brief But Spectacular and the American Medical Association (AMA) Moving Medicine Series for her work advancing health equity for LGBTQ older adults. She is also the creator of Eye to Eye: Portraits of Pride, Strength and Beauty ( a photo exhibit of older LGBTQ women) and director of the documentary, “Just Us: The longing and hope of LGBTQ people.”
October 27, 2023 - Walking the Tightrope as Mental Health Clinicians: Helping Others and Caring for Ourselves
Yesne Alici, M.D. - Walking the Tightrope as Mental Health Clinicians: Helping Others and Caring for Ourselves, 10-27-2023
Yesne Alici, M.D. is an Associate Attending Psychiatrist at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and an Associate Professor of Clinical Psychiatry at Weill Cornell Medical College. She is board-certified in Adult Psychiatry, Geriatric Psychiatry, and Consultation Liaison Psychiatry. Dr. Alici is the liaison psychiatrist to Neuro- Oncology and Geriatric services. Dr. Alici is the Clinical Director of Psychiatry Service and the Vice Chair of Clinical Operations at the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences. Dr. Alici is a Clinical Ethics Consultant and is a member of the Hospital Ethics Committee at MSKCC. Her clinical, educational, and research interests include assessment and management of delirium among cancer patients, long-term cognitive outcomes of delirium, symptom management in terminally ill cancer patients, and cognitive effects of cancer and cancer therapies.
Dr. Christine Wilkins, Ph.D., LCSW - Walking the Tightrope as Mental Health Clinicians: Helping Others and Caring for Ourselves, 10-27-2023
Dr. Christine Wilkins, Ph.D., LCSW, joined MSK as Social Work Director in 2021. Previously she worked at NYU Langone Health (NYULH) for 21 years, where she developed and led the Advance Care Planning (ACP) Program that included the implementation of eMOLST and the ACP Navigator across NYULH’s system. She served as NYULH’s domestic violence coordinator, drawing on her work in her home country of Malta, where she helped create the first dedicated domestic violence agency, served as Policy Coordinator for the Minister of Social Policy, and represented Malta at the United Nations Beijing +5 conference. She is social work faculty at NYU, Fordham University and Smith College. Her interests include clinical social work, trauma-informed care, bioethics, and promoting resilience for healthcare professionals. She has published several articles and book chapters and presented locally and internationally. She serves on the Society for Social Work Leadership in Healthcare, national POLST and statewide MOLST boards. She is a graduate of the University of Malta, the University of Toronto, and NYU Silver School of Social Work where she received a PhD in clinical social work.
November 10, 2023 - The Role of the Gut Bacteriome and Inflammation in the Cancer Treatment-Induced Behavioral Side Effects
Dr. Leah Pyter, PhD - The Role of the Gut Bacteriome and Inflammation in the Cancer Treatment-Induced Behavioral Side Effects, 11-10-2023
Dr. Leah Pyter is an Associate Professor in the Institute for Behavioral Medicine Research and Department of Psychiatry at the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center. She an integrative biologist with a PhD in behavioral neuroscience and an MS in reproductive endocrinology. The last 15+ years of her research career have focused on how neuro-immune communication contributes to behavioral side effects of chemotherapy with the overall mission of improving the quality of life and health of cancer patients and survivors. Although trained as a basic scientist, she has recently completed a longitudinal clinical study with 77 breast cancer patients. Her research has been continuously supported by the NIH and the American Cancer Society. She also co-directs the OSU-wide Neuroscience Graduate Program and serves on the Board of Directors of the Psychoneuroimmunology Research Society, various NIH and international study sections, the Editorial Board of multiple journals, and is a national Scialog Fellow for the Research Corporation for Science Advancement.
December 8, 2023 - Patient Safety Grand Rounds: Medical aid in Dying
Julia Kulikowski M.D. - Patient Safety Grand Rounds: Medical Aid in Dying, 12-8-2023
Julia Kulikowski, M.D. is the current Chief CL/Psycho-oncology fellow at MSKCC and joined the department as a clinical fellow in 2022. She was born and raised in Burlington, Ontario, Canada and attended medical school at Ross University School of Medicine. She returned to Canada to complete her psychiatry residency at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario where she acted as chief resident of the psychiatric emergency services. She developed wellness initiatives over the course of her residency training and found a special interest in psycho-oncology. This academic year, Julia continued her fellowship at MSKCC as chief fellow to provide ongoing clinical care and pursue research in physician wellness and end-of-life care.