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Pulmonary/Critical Care Fellowship Program

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Message from Program Director

Thank you for your interest in the Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine fellowship program at Westchester Medical Center. We aspire to world-class training and mentoring of the next generation of clinicians, educators and researchers in the field of Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine. The program is based in Valhalla, NY, which is one of the bucolic northern suburbs of New York City located in Westchester County extending along the eastern bank of the Hudson River.

The fellowship is a three-year program fully accredited by the ACGME. Three to four fellows are accepted each year for a total of 11 fellows. Westchester Medical Center, the main training site for the program, is a 415-bed tertiary/quaternary referral center and flagship hospital for the 1,700-bed WMCHealth system spanning the Hudson Valley. It is also the primary teaching hospital for New York Medical College. Westchester Medical Center is known for having one of the highest case mix indices in the United States, meaning that its patients are among the most clinically complex of any hospital in the country. At this site, Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine fellows learn to care for a population encompassing all medical and surgical subspecialties, including transplantation of the kidney, liver, heart, pancreas and bone marrow.

Additionally, fellows gain non-medical critical care experience through core rotations in a Neurosciences ICU and elective rotations in other intensive care units. Both primary and consultative management of patients receiving ECMO is commonplace. The Medical Center also contains the hub of a highly developed tele-ICU service. Westchester Medical Center provides interventional pulmonology services for a large catchment area, and the fellows rotate with the hospital’s interventional pulmonology section. In collaboration with the Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital, Westchester Medical Center is home to a large cystic fibrosis program, which affords fellows the opportunity to learn about the management of this unique and challenging population. The weekly chest clinic staffed by the fellows offers them an opportunity to exercise supervised autonomy in the care of a diverse, underserved patient population with complex needs, among them a heavy burden of sleep-disordered breathing. A large simulation center used for fellow training is located on the grounds of New York Medical College.

For a contrasting community-based experience, the fellows rotate at affiliate sites that are part of the NYC Health + Hospitals municipal hospital system. Lincoln Medical Center is a busy inner city public facility known for its advanced asthma care and intense critical care service. Metropolitan Hospital Center provides exposure to the outpatient care of the prototypical community patient with pulmonary disease. We believe that this combination of complementary training sites offers the broadest possible clinical scope, preparing fellows for practice in any environment upon graduation.

As part of a program based at an academic medical center and closely allied with New York Medical College, the fellows are granted four to six months of research time between second and third year to pursue scholarly projects with the encouragement and mentorship of the faculty. They also interact with New York Medical College medical students in multiple settings. There is an extensive list of conferences designed with trainees in mind, including Chest X-ray and CT conferences, Pathology conference, Thoracic tumor board, clinical case conference, M&M, and CF conference among others. There is a quarterly divisional Grand Rounds series as well as a “boot camp”-style preparatory crash course for first-year fellows in the summer months. Running weekly is a core curriculum lecture series composed of both faculty and fellow presentations.

The Westchester Medical Center Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine fellowship program participates in ERAS and invites applications from candidates interested in its mission of providing premier clinical training in an environment conducive to scholarly output.

Sincerely,

 

Oleg Epelbaum, MD 
Program Director

 

Message from Director of Pulmonary and Critical Care Department at Westchester Medical Center


Program Overview and Curriculum 

The Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine Fellowship Program at Westchester Medical Center was established in 1980 and is fully accredited by the ACGME. It currently consists of 11 fellows covering three training sites: Westchester Medical Center, Lincoln Medical Center and Metropolitan Hospital Center.

 WESTCHESTER MEDICAL CENTER

Westchester Medical Center is the primary training site for the Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine fellowship at Westchester Medical Center. The Westchester Medical Center experience consists of the following rotations and approximate durations over three years of training:

  • Pulmonary Consultation (6 mo.)
  • Medical ICU (3 mo.)
  • Neurosciences ICU (3 mo.)
  • Interventional Pulmonology (3 mo.)
  • Research/Elective (5 mo.)
  • Night Float (3 mo.)

Fellows assigned to all rotations other than MICU and Night Float attend weekly continuity Chest Clinic. Numerous options are available for elective rotations, including pulmonary hypertension, e-ICU, CCU, and thoracic radiology among others. A brief pulmonary rehabilitation rotation at the renowned Burke Rehabilitation Hospital is mandatory. Scholarly initiatives are encouraged and promoted by the faculty, resulting in consistent fellow participation in international conferences and numerous fellow-authored publications in reputable journals. Reimbursement is provided for conference presentations, hands-on courses, and pulmonary board review preparation.

The fellows rotating at Westchester Medical Center attend and take part in the following conferences:

  • Case Conference
  • M&M
  • Pathology Conference
  • Chest X-ray Conference (led by the chief of Radiology)
  • Chest CT Conference (led by a dedicated thoracic radiologist)
  • CF Conference
  • Journal Club
  • Physiology Conference
  • Faculty Lectures
  • Thoracic Tumor Board
  • Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine Grand Rounds

AFFILIATE SITES

Lincoln Medical Center (division chief: Dr. Riyad Basir) is a bustling NYC municipal hospital located in the Bronx. The fellows at LMC rotate on the following services:

  • Pulmonary Consultation
  • Medical ICU
  • Pulmonary Clinic

The LMC rotations expose the fellows to a different spectrum of disease than the one encountered at WMC, specifically new presentations of infectious disease, challenging toxicology, and refractory asthma. Fellows also play the primary role in the evaluation and management of patients with ischemic stroke beginning in the Emergency Department and continuing in the ICU. Every day prior to ICU rounds, they gather with the faculty for an hour-long morning report during which management decisions regarding the ICU patients are discussed. Fellows rotating at LMC also attend other conferences organized by the LMC faculty. LMC has its own busy internal medicine residency program, and the fellows interact extensively with LMC house staff.

Metropolitan Hospital Center (division chief: Dr. Thomas Newman) is a venerable Manhattan institution that, like LMC, is part of the NYC municipal hospital system and home to its own internal medicine residency program. While at MHC, the fellow rotates on the following services:

  • Pulmonary Consultation
  • Medical ICU

MHC is known for its “bread and butter” mix of critical care and pulmonary cases. Close interactions between faculty, fellows, and house staff are the norm in the small-scale environment of MHC.


Current Fellows 

Class of 2021


Precious Macauley, MD
Residency:
Maimonides Medical Center


Natalya Kozlova, MD
Residency:
Lincoln Medical Center



Zeeshan Hafeez, MD
Residency:
Brookdale University Hospital Medical Center



Anna Shengelia, MD
Residency:
Lincoln Medical Center 

Class of 2022


Yasmin Leigh, DO
Residency:
Orange Regional Medical Center


Ravi Manglani, MD
Residency:
Lincoln Medical Center


Ester Sherman, MD
Residency:
SUNY Upstate


Hamid Yaqoob, MD
Residency:
Howard University

Class of 2023


Sally Ziatabar DO, MS
Residency: Lenox Hill Hospital/Northwell Health


Ian Kaplan, DO
Residency: 
SUNY Downstate


Theresa Henson, MD, MBA Residency: Nassau University Medical Center

Where Our Fellows Have Gone After Training:

Class of 2020

  1. Baystate Medical Center, Springfield, MA
    • Faculty: University of Massachusetts
  2. Central Florida Pulmonary Group, Orlando, FL
  3. Westside Regional Medical Center, Plantation, FL

Class of 2019

  1. NYC Health+Hospitals Harlem Hospital, New York, NY
    • Faculty: Columbia College of P&S
  2. St. Barnabas Hospital, Bronx, NY  
    • Faculty: CUNY School of Medicine
  3. Hurley Medical Center, Flint, MI
    • Faculty: Michigan State University

Class of 2018

  1. Interventional Pulmonology Fellowship, University of Cincinnati
  2. St. Francis Hospital, Roslyn, NY
  3. Baylor Scott & White Health, Dallas, TX
  4. Mercy Medical Center, Cedar Rapids, IA

Class of 2017

  1. Interventional Pulmonology Fellowship, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York, NY
  2. CHI Franciscan Health, Tacoma, WA
  3. Orlando Health, Orlando, FL

Class of 2016

  1. Bassett Healthcare Network, Cooperstown, NY
    • Faculty: Bassett Medical Center
  2. Covenant Medical Center, Saginaw, MI
    • Faculty: Central Michigan University
  3. JFK Medical Center/Hackensack Meridian Health, Edison, NJ

Faculty

WESTCHESTER MEDICAL CENTER

Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine

Neil W. Schluger, MD
Director of Medicine, Westchester Medical Center 
William and Barbara Rosenthal Chair, Department of Medicine, New York Medical College 
Professor of Medicine, New York Medical College
Fellowship: New York Hospital Cornell Medical Center 
Focus: 
Tuberculosis, Public Health, International Health

Dipak Chandy, MD 
Co-Director, Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine
Professor of Medicine and Neurology, New York Medical College
Focus: Medical and Neurocritical Care, Pulmonary and Sleep Medicine
Fellowship: The Mount Sinai Hospital

Lawrence DeLorenzo, MD
Co-Director, Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine
Director, Medical ICU
Professor of Medicine, New York Medical College
Focus: Pulmonary Medicine, Medical Critical Care
Fellowship: Metropolitan Hospital Center at New York Medical College

Oleg Epelbaum, MD
Program Director, Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine Fellowship 
Director, Fellow Chest Clinic 
Clinical Associate Professor of Medicine, New York Medical College
Focus: Pleural Procedures, Advanced Diagnostic Bronchoscopy, Medical Critical Care 
Fellowship: The Mount Sinai Hospital

Lisa Paul, MD
Assistant Professor of Medicine, New York Medical College
Focus: Cystic Fibrosis, Medical and Neurocritical Care, Pulmonary Medicine
Fellowship: Westchester Medical Center

Stuart Lehrman, MD
Medical Director, Sleep Laboratory
Professor of Medicine, New York Medical College
Focus: Sleep Medicine, Pulmonary Physiology
Fellowship: Cedars-Sinai Medical Center

Kassem Harris, MD
Director, Interventional Pulmonology
Associate Professor of Medicine, New York Medical College
Focus: Interventional Pulmonology
IP Fellowship: Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania

Daniel Katzman, MD
Section of Interventional Pulmonology
Assistant Professor of Medicine, New York Medical College
Focus: Interventional Pulmonology
IP Fellowship: Northwestern Memorial Hospital

Neurocritical Care

Stephan A. Mayer, MD  
Director of Neurocritical Care 
Focus: Emergency Neurology 

Fawaz Al-Mufti, MD
Neuroendovascular Surgery
Focus: Neurocritical Care, Endovascular Stroke Therapy 

Telehealth (e-ICU) Center

Christian Becker, MD, PhD
Associate Medical Director, WMC eHealth Center
Associate Professor of Medicine, New York Medical College
Focus: Critical Care, Telemedicine, Quality, Sarcoidosis

Daniel Miller, MD
Assistant Professor of Medicine, New York Medical College
Focus: Critical Care, Telemedicine

LINCOLN MEDICAL CENTER

Riyad Basir, MD
Chief, Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine
Site Director, Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine Fellowship

Shahryar Eshaghian, MD
Director, Medical ICU

Shekar Murthy, MD
Director, Pulmonary Clinic

Kennedy Omonuwa, MD

Elie Hatem, MD

Maria Srinivasan, MD

Manmeet Kaur Gujral, MD

METROPOLITAN HOSPITAL CENTER

Thomas Newman, MD
Chief, Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine
Site Director, Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine Fellowship
Professor of Medicine, New York Medical College

Hossam Amin, MD
Clinical Professor of Medicine, New York Medical College

Imnett Habtes, MD
Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine, New York Medical College

Applications

Our program participates in ERAS, the Electronic Residency Application Service.

Applications are accepted through the Electronic Residency Application System (ERAS). To be considered complete, an application must have the ERAS Common Application Form, medical school transcript, official USMLE transcript, Dean's letter (MSPE), Step I, II, III Exam scores, letters of recommendation from Program Director of any previous medical residency training, and at least three letters of recommendation from Faculty who have worked with the candidate within the past year.

Interviews

Our program will notify applicants through ERAS as to whether they have been selected for an interview.

This year, in keeping with the recommendations of the Coalition for Physician Accountability, all interviews will be performed virtually. Interviews will take place in September and October, and applicants will be provided with detailed information regarding the logistics of the interview days.

Match 

The program participates in the National Residency Matching Program (NRMP).

The deadline for submitting Rank Order Lists is November 18, 2020, and Match Day is December 2, 2020.



Contact Us

Ines Richardson
Program Coordinator
Pulmonary/Critical Care/Sleep Medicine
Office: 914.493.7518
Ines.Richardson@wmchealth.org