Department of Medicine

Department of Medicine

  Division of General Internal Medicine

Division of General Internal Medicine Newsletter

  • GIM News
  • Donna L. Bishop, Editor
  • Next issue:
    December 2016
  • Submission deadline:
    November 18th, 2016
  • E-mail: Donna Bishop

Professional Recognition

Recognition and Honors

Shanta Zimmer, MD, was honored as a Leader of Diversity Training in Residency Training by the Association of Program Directors Internal Medicine (APDIM) Member Spotlight Series. This program is designed to recognize APDIM members throughout the year for their innovation, leadership, and contributions to internal medicine residency education.

Walid Gellad, MD, MPH, was selected for the Excellence in Government Award from the Federal Executive Board in the Outstanding Contribution to Science Category.

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Little Apple Awards

The Little Apple Awards were initiated by the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine Class of 2003 to recognize outstanding residents and interns who worked with the students during the third year of clinical rotations and who the students believed had demonstrated excellence in the areas of student teaching, team leadership, funds of knowledge, compassionate and humanistic patient care, and service as a mentor and role model.

The University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine Class of 2017 selected three interns and three residents to receive the 2016 awards. Four of the six selected this year are from the Division of General Internal Medicine.


Brittany Dulmage, MD: Transitional / Department of Dermatology  
Joseph Rocco, MD: Division of General Internal Medicine


Victor Chedid, MD: Division of General Internal Medicine
Andrew Klein, MD: Division of General Internal Medicine

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Professional Certifications

Cindy Murphy, RN, BSN, MS, the Division of General Internal Medicine health coordinator, passed the National Certification Test in Diabetes Education. 

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Lectures and Talks

Esa M Davis, MD, MPH, Director of the UPMC Tobacco Treatment Service (TTS) was invited to present at the Global Tobacco Dependence Treatment Summit, hosted by the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, on May 23, 2016. The TTS was chosen to highlight the infrastructure that UPMC has created during the past four years to identify and treat tobacco users within the health system.

By supporting three full-time counselors and building an electronic structure, the TTS has provided more than 11,000 counseling sessions to patients admitted since September 2012. In March 2015, the TTS and the Information Services Division launched the first-in-the-country, bi-directional, electronic referral system to the PA Free Quitline, which generates 20% of all referrals from providers in Pennsylvania. More than 60% of patients now receive some form of tobacco treatment (medications, counseling, or both) during their admission to UPMC Presbyterian, which is a 10% from last year.

Lisa Podgurski, MD, organized and led the first GynOncoTalk communication skills workshop for gynecologic oncology fellows and advance care providers, collaborating with palliative care and gynecologic oncology physicians from the Mayo Clinic, the University of Alabama at Birmingham, and the University of Colorado at Denver as co-facilitators.

Adam Gordon, MD, MPH, was an invited panelist in April 2016 for the National Institute on Drug Abuse Clinical Trials Network Joint Workshop for the Health Care Data Science Task Force and the Clinical Decision Support for Opioid Use Disorder Task Force.

Doug Landsittel, PhD, presented invited talks on patient-centered comparative effectiveness research at two national conferences—Causal Inference Methods in PCOR Using Observational Data and Translational Science 2016.

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Committees, Boards and Elected Offices

Sonya Borrero, MD, MS, was invited to serve as a full member on a National Institutes of Health study section focused on health, behavior, and context for 4-6 years starting July 1, 2016.

Doug Landsittel, PhD, recently served as co-chair for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention/ National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health for Agricultural Safety and Health Initiative. As the co-chair, he directed 2.5 days of a large review panel with approximately 70 panel members. Dr. Landsittel has also started serving on the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases External Expert Panel for the Prevention of Lower Urinary Tract Symptoms in Women (PLUS) Project.

Walid Gellad, MD, MPH, was appointed to the editorial board for the Journal of General Internal Medicine from 2016 to 2019.

Larissa Myaskovsky, PhD, was invited to serve as a Federal Advisory Committee act appointee to the VA Office of Rehabilitation Research and Development Scientific Merit Review Board for 2-4 years.

Adam Gordon, MD, MPH, participated in a recent FDA Advisory Committee meeting regarding new medications for opioid addiction and was interviewed by NPR regarding this topic.

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The Birmingham Clinic was featured in a Pittsburgh Post-Gazette article written by reporter Kate Giammarise. The article reviewed the continued need for free clinics, such as Birmingham and the 9th Street Clinic, despite the Affordable Care Act and expanded Medicaid.

Brian Primack MD, PhD, and the Center for Research on Media, Technology, and Health have received a great deal of media attention from outlets such as WESA and the Daily Mail since the release of their “Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Inhaled Toxicants from Waterpipe and Cigarette Smoking” article.

Yael Schenker, MD, was quoted in a recent New York Times article on prescription drugs and advertising.

Leslie Hausmann, PhD, was featured in a recent nationally released VA Pulse video focused on research to improve health care equity

Larissa Myaskovsky, PhD, was featured as the American Society of Transplantation Member Spotlight in March 2016.

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