Fellows Alumni Class of 2017–2019

Four Fellowships were offered and accepted for the class that started July 1, 2017. Our deepest thanks and congratulations to the graduates!
L to R: Julia Finklestein, Karthik Sivashanker, Laura Meyers, Isaac Chau


Issac S. Chua, MD

Dr. Chua is a currently a Clinical Fellow within the Harvard Inter-professional Palliative Care Fellowship Program at Massachusetts General Hospital / Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. He completed medical school at The University of Texas Health Science Center/McGovern Medical School, where he was the founder of the UT Health chapter of the IHI Open School and graduated from M.D. Anderson’s Clinical Safety & Effectiveness Program. He completed his Internal Medicine Residency at Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center and worked as a hospitalist for Kelsey Seybold Clinic in the Texas Medical Center prior to his palliative care fellowship at MGH/DFCI.

Since medical school, Dr. Chua has been involved in numerous quality improvement projects. Currently, he is working on improving the accuracy of PCA documentation at MGH. He is also a member of the House Staff Patient Safety and Quality Committee at BWH. His interests include population health management for the seriously ill and the designing and implementation of innovative outpatient palliative care delivery models.

Today: Dr. Chua servas as an Instructor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and a Physician in Adult Palliative Care at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute.

Julia B. Finkelstein, MD

Dr. Finkelstein is currently completing her final year of residency (PGY-6) in Urology at New York Presbyterian, Columbia University College of Physicians & Surgeons. She received her medical degree from New York University School of Medicine and her undergraduate degree from Cornell University.

During her urology residency at Columbia, Dr. Finkelstein served as the chair of the House Staff Quality Council, becoming heavily involved in an initiative to decrease the incidence of catheter-associated urinary tract infections, and was a research investigator in the Department of Urology, Genetics and Development, and Pathology.

Dr. Finkelstein aspires to one day be a quality officer, fostering and leading data-driven improvement projects that provide patients with the best possible care. She will continue to focus her efforts on preventing healthcare-associated infections.

Today: Dr. Finkelstein serves as an Assistant Professor of Urology at CUMC/NYP Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital.

Laura C. Myers, MD

Dr. Myers is currently a Second-Year Fellow in Pulmonary/Critical Care in the MGH/BIDMC Combined Program. Prior to medical school, she did basic science research in stem cell research at the NIH and the Harvard Stem Cell Institute. She completed medical school at Harvard, was a Research Assistant for several years at DFCI, BWH, and did an internship at the World Health Organization in Geneva, Switzerland. She also completed an Internal Medicine Residency at MGH, where she has been involved in multiple projects with the Department of Medicine Quality/Safety Committee.

Dr. Myers is interested in using quantitative methods to study various aspects of quality/safety within a tertiary care delivery system. This will include issues that span both outpatient/inpatient care as well as general medicine/sub-specialty care. Examples include COPD readmission disparities, use of high flow nasal cannula on general medicine floors, optimization of ICU bed throughput, and medical malpractice claims in the ICU.

Today: Dr. Meyers serves as a Research Scientist in the Division of Research - Health Care Delivery and Policy at Kaiser Permanante.

Karthik S. Sivashanker, MD

Dr. Sivashanker is an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at the Boston University School of Medicine and currently serves as a staff consultation-liaison psychiatrist in VA Boston Healthcare. He completed medical school at the Feinberg Northwestern University School of Medicine, psychiatry residency at New York Presbyterian-Weill Cornell, and psychosomatic medicine fellowship at Brigham & Women's Hospital.

Dr. Sivashanker has a demonstrated passion for patient safety and quality work. He serves as the primary investigator of a multi-disciplinary quality improvement initiative to enhance the screening and transfer process for patients seeking substance detoxification. This innovation was selected as a Gold Status practice, out of more than 400 promising innovations, in a nationwide competition by the Under Secretary for Health.

Dr. Sivashanker has been involved in the development of other novel protocols and services, targeting key areas, such as: (i) the opioid epidemic affecting VA patients, (ii) the absence of transplant services in New England VA Healthcare, (iii) regional interfacility transfer difficulties, and (iv) off-label use of parental ketamine for treatment-refractory depression and suicidality.

Today: Dr. Siveshanker serves as the VP of Equitable Health Systems & Innovation in the Center for Health Equity at the American Medical Association.