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Geriatric Medicine Board Exam Committee

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Helen L. Chen, MD, Chair

Helen L. Chen, MD, ChairDr. Chen is the Chief Medical Officer at Hebrew SeniorLife, a Harvard Medical School-affiliated senior health care organization in Boston, Massachusetts, where she serves as the Senior Clinical Leader and oversees the organization's Department of Medicine. She is board certified in Internal Medicine, Geriatric Medicine, and Hospice and Palliative Medicine.

Previously, Dr. Chen served as the Chief Medical Officer of the Center for Elders' Independence, a Program of All-Inclusive Care for Elders (PACE) in Oakland, California. Prior to that, she was a Clinical Professor of Medicine in the Division of Geriatrics at the University of California, San Francisco, where she also served as the Geriatrics and Extended Care Service Line Director for the San Francisco VA Medical Center and Director of the Northern California Geriatric Education Center. She is currently a member of the American Board of Internal Medicine Geriatric Medicine Exam Committee and the National Quality Forum Standing Committee on Readmissions and Admissions.

Dr. Chen is a graduate of the California Healthcare Foundation Leadership Program and received her undergraduate and medical degrees from Brown University. She completed her residency training in internal medicine and fellowship training in clinical geriatrics at the University of California, San Francisco.

As of April 2019, Dr. Chen reported the following external relationships:

Dr. Chen serves in significant roles with the following organizations, receiving reimbursement or compensation as listed:

  • Beth Israel Deaconess Care Organization, Board Member, Primary Care Physicians Pod Leaders Committee.
  • American Academy of Hospice & Palliative Medicine, Committee Member, receiving reimbursement for travel expenses.
  • National Quality Forum, Readmissions Committee Member, receiving reimbursement for travel expenses.

Other compensation from other not-for-profit healthcare-related organization:

  • Hebrew SeniorLife, Chief Medical Officer, receiving salary support.

Danelle O. Cayea, MD

Danelle O. Cayea, MDDr. Cayea, who is board certified in Internal Medicine and Geriatric Medicine, is an Assistant Professor of Medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and is the Associate Vice Chair for Education for the Department of Medicine and Director of the Daniel and Jeannette Hendin Schapiro Geriatrics Medical Education Center. She is a clinician educator who focuses on medical student education and has interests in teaching and evaluating communication skills. Dr. Cayea serves as the Director of Core Faculty in several courses at the School of Medicine. She participates in training faculty in teaching skills on a local and national level.

Dr. Cayea is a member of the American Board of Internal Medicine Geriatric Medicine Board Exam Committee. She previously served as a member of the ABIM Geriatric Medicine Self-Assessment Committee.

After earning her medical degree at the University of Rochester, Dr. Cayea completed internal medicine residency and geriatric medicine fellowship at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.

As of February 2019, Dr. Cayea reported the following external relationships:

Dr. Cayea serves in significant roles with the following organization, receiving reimbursement or compensation as listed:

  • American Academy on Communication in Healthcare, Faculty Development Committee, co-Chair; also teaches communication skills courses and leading train the trainer courses receiving reimbursement for travel expenses and honoraria.

Ariel Cole, MD

Dr. Cole received her medical degree from the University of South Florida in Tampa and completed her residency and fellowship training at Florida Hospital. As part of her role as director of the Geriatric fellowship, Dr. Cole supervises medical students, residents, and geriatric fellows in the care of elderly patients in the hospital, outpatient clinics, nursing homes, and home visits. She oversees a Comprehensive Geriatric Assessment Clinic within the Centre for Aging and Wellness where elder patients and their caregivers meet with an interdisciplinary team to evaluate their medical, functional, and psychosocial status. Dr. Cole is the Orlando campus Clerkship Director for Geriatrics at the Florida State University (FSU) College of Medicine. Dr. Cole is a member of the American Academy of Family Physicians, the American Geriatrics Society, and the American Medical Directors Association. She is Board Certified in Family Medicine and Geriatric Medicine and is a Certified Medical Director. Dr. Cole is also a member of the American Board of Internal Medicine Geriatric Medicine Board Exam Committee.

As of August 2019, Dr. Cole reported the following external relationships:

Dr. Cole serves in significant roles with the following organization, receiving reimbursement or compensation as listed:

  • AdventHealth Physicians Network, Board Member, receiving honoraria.

Elizabeth N. Eckstrom, MD, MPH

Elizabeth N. Eckstrom, MD, MPHDr. Eckstrom, who is board certified in Internal Medicine and Geriatric Medicine, is Professor and Section Chief of Geriatrics in the Division of General Internal Medicine & Geriatrics at Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU). She leads the geriatrics practice within the OHSU Internal Medicine Clinic, championing geriatric best practices in the vibrant combined Division, and teaches students, residents and geriatric fellows.

Dr. Eckstrom is part of the OHSU Interprofessional Initiative, developing evaluation tools and leading interprofessional faculty development. Her research focuses on promoting a healthy lifestyle in older adults, with an emphasis on tai chi for falls prevention. She also conducts studies to enhance interprofessional teamwork in falls prevention and has developed and tested electronic health record tools to facilitate uptake of evidence-based practices. She co-directs OHSU’s Healthy Aging Alliance.

Previously a member of the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) Geriatric Medicine Self-Assessment Committee, Dr. Eckstrom is now a member of the ABIM Geriatric Medicine Board Exam Committee.

Dr. Eckstrom earned her medical degree from the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, and her masters of public health degree from the University of Washington. She completed residency training and a geriatric medicine fellowship at OHSU.

As of February 2019, Dr. Eckstrom reported no external relationships.

Anne R. Fabiny, MD

Anne R. Fabiny, MDDr. Fabiny, is board certified in Family Medicine and Geriatric Medicine by the American Board of Family Medicine and is Associate Chief of Staff for Geriatrics, Palliative and Extended Care at the San Francisco VA Medical Center and Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of California-San Francisco. Prior to assuming that role, she was the Chief of Geriatrics at Cambridge Health Alliance and Medical Director of the CHA Elder Service Plan (a PACE program). She was Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School.

Dr. Fabiny began her career as a clinician-educator. She was the Saal Fellow in Medical Education at Harvard Medical School (HMS) and a Macy Scholar. She served as the Associate Director of the 4th Year Comprehensive Objective Structured Clinical Examination at HMS, was a Scholar in The Academy at HMS and Chief of the Teachers' Section of the American Geriatrics Society. She was the 2011 recipient of the HMS Charles McCabe Faculty Prize for Excellence in Teaching.

She joined the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) and Hebrew SeniorLife faculty as a Clinician-Educator in 1997 and has been strongly committed to geriatric education ever since. In 1999, she received a five-year Geriatric Academic Career Award from the Bureau of Health Professions to develop expertise as an educator. She served as Director of the Harvard Geriatric Fellowship Program and Director of Education for the BIDMC Gerontology Division from 2000 to 2005.

More recently, Dr. Fabiny has been engaged in quality improvement work. She developed a successful methodology and interventions to decrease emergency room and hospital utilization for CHA PACE participants and developed an outpatient frailty screening program for CHA outpatient clinics. She was awarded the Bridges to Excellence Medical Home Recognition (2015 to 2018) Level III and the NCQA Physician Practice Connections – Patient Centered Medical Home (2015 to 2018). Dr. Fabiny serves as a member of the American Board of Internal Medicine Geriatric Medicine Board Exam Committee.

She received her medical degree in 1992 from the University of Wisconsin, where she also completed a residency in family medicine. From 1995 to 1997, she was a Fellow in Geriatrics at Harvard Medical School.

View my board certification status via ABMS Website

As of April 2019, Dr. Fabiny reported the following external relationships:

Dr. Fabiny serves in significant roles with the following organization, receiving reimbursement or compensation as listed:

  • National Center for Medical Legal Partnerships, without compensation.

Richard J. Hempel, MD

Richard J. Hempel, MD, ChairDr. Hempel is the owner and founder of Family Medicine Clinic of Danville, PSC, where he has practiced since 1999. He is board certified in both Family Medicine and Geriatric Medicine by the American Board of Family Medicine (ABFM). He is a member of the American Board of Internal Medicine Geriatric Medicine Board Exam Committee and is an active participant in general test development and review for the ABFM.

Previously, Dr. Hempel was the Vice President of Medical Affairs at Ephraim McDowell Regional Medical Center (EMRMC) from 2007 to 2014. During his tenure there, he was intimately involved with developing a Hospitalist program and Computerized Physician Order Entry for Ephraim McDowell Health. Dr. Hempel practiced family medicine with Danville Family Physicians from 1990 to 1999, when he founded Family Medicine Clinic of Danville, PSC.

He has chaired the Pharmacy and Therapeutics Committee at EMRMC for over 20 years. He also was the Medical Director for Heritage Hospice for 11 years and Medical Director of Danville Center for Health and Rehabilitation for 10 years.

Dr. Hempel received his undergraduate degree from the University of Kentucky in 1981 and his medical degree from Vanderbilt University in 1985. He completed a residency in family medicine from the Tallahassee Memorial Regional Hospital Family Medicine program in 1988 and served a two-year obligation in rural Tennessee with the National Health Service Corps from 1988 to 1990.

View my board certification status via ABMS Website

As of April 2019, Dr. Hempel reported no external relationships.

Paul Kirwin, MD

Dr. Kirwin is Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Program Director for the Geriatric Psychiatry Fellowship at Yale University Hospital. Dr. Kirwin is board certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology and has expertise valued by the exam committee.

Dr. Kirwin is a member of the American Board of Internal Medicine Geriatric Medicine Board Exam Committee.

He received his bachelor’s degree from Colorado College and his medical degree from Rochester University.

View my board certification status via ABMS Website

As of May 2019, Dr. Kirwin reported the following external relationships:

Dr. Kirwin serves in significant roles with the following health care-related organizations, receiving reimbursement or compensation as listed:

  • American Association for Geriatric Psychiatry, Past President, without compensation.
  • American Psychiatric Association, Geriatric Psychiatry Committee Member, without compensation.
  • Americares, Global Medical Advisor, without compensation.
  • Partners in Health, Mental Health Consultant, without compensation.

Mohamad A. Sidani, MD, MS, FAAFP

Dr. Sidani got his MD Degree from the American University of Beirut Medical School in June 1984. He finished his residency in Family Medicine at Anderson Memorial Hospital at Anderson, SC in June 1991. He completed his Geriatric Medicine Fellowship at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, MI in June 1993. He is Board Certified at the American Board of Family Medicine since 1992. Dr. Sidani is a member of the American Board of Internal Medicine Geriatric Medicine Board Exam Committee.

He also had Certificate of Added Qualifications in Geriatric Medicine since April 1994. Dr. Sidani has been in academic medicine since 1997, starting as assistant professor at Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center (LSUHSC); then Associate Professor at Meharry Medical College; and in 2014 he became professor at Baylor College of Medicine. He has been involved in teaching of students and residents all through.

View my board certification status via ABMS Website

As of August 2019, Dr. Sidani reported no external relationships.

Niharika N. Suchak, MD

Dr. Suchak is a clinician-educator and an Associate Professor in the Department of Geriatrics at Florida State University College of Medicine in Tallahassee. She is board certified through the American Board of Internal Medicine in Internal Medicine, Geriatric Medicine, and Hospice and Palliative Medicine. She has extensive clinical and leadership experience in a multitude of health care environments including outpatient, hospital, nursing home, rehabilitation facility, hospice, assisted living, and house calls. She has previously organized geriatrics consultation programs with sub-specialties such as oncology, surgery, orthopedics, and gynecology.

She is the immediate President of the Florida Geriatrics Society and serves as co-chair for the AGS International Activities Special Interest Group. She regularly serves as the international coordinator and member of the organizing committee for the International Congress on Gerontology and Geriatric Medicine and a member of the American Board of Internal Medicine Geriatric Medicine Board Exam Committee.

She has presented regionally, nationally, and internationally on various geriatric medicine and medical education topics. In 2012, Dr. Suchak received the Clinician of the Year Award by the American Geriatrics Society.

Dr. Suchak has a strong interest in medical education, and interprofessional education is a major focus area for her. Her current teaching activities involve medical students, physician assistant students, medical residents, and students from other health professions. Previously, she has also taught geriatric medicine fellows. She contributes to curriculum development at the medical school as the Year 1 Clinical Skills director, and through teaching activities that include students from all 4 years of medical school. She is interested in the use of simulation as a tool for medical education and is involved in creating and conducting simulation based learning activities, and assessing learning outcomes.

As of August 2018, Dr. Suchakk reported the following external relationships:

Dr. Suchak serves in significant roles with the following organizations, receiving reimbursement or compensation as listed:

  • Florida Geriatrics Society, Board Member, without compensation.
  • The Alzheimer’s Project, Board Member, without compensation.
  • Florida Department of Health, Alzheimer’s Disease Research Grant Advisory Board Member, without compensation.
  • American Geriatrics Society, co-Chair of International Activities Special Interest Group, without compensation.
  • American Medical Women’s Association, without compensation.