Dr. Ojiaku Ikezuagu, a 2005 graduate of St. George’s University School of Medicine, has been added to the staff at South Central Iowa Medical Clinic (SCIMC) in Corydon, Iowa. The clinic is one of five affiliated with Wayne County Hospital, a recipient of the Press Ganey Summit Award for patient satisfaction in 2009 and 2010. Dr. OJ, as he’s called, is board certified in family medicine. He completed his residency and training at Montgomery Hospital in Norristown, PA, in 2012, before joining the team at SCIMC.
Troy Dowers, SGUSOM ’04, has been named to the staff of primary care providers at St. Clare Health Center in Fenton, MO. St. Clare is one of seven hospitals in the SSM Health Care network, which serves Greater St. Louis. The facility visited with more than 100,000 patients in 2011.
Dr. Nicholas Holmes, SGUSOM ’07, has joined the team at St. Croix Orthopedics, PA, which provides orthopedic care in Minnesota and western Wisconsin, with its headquarters located in Oak Park Heights, MN. Dr. Holmes is a specialist in sports medicine.
Dr. Ilona Belinskaya has a new home. The 2003 graduate from St. George’s University School of Medicine been appointed to the Department of Pulmonary Medicine staff at Cheshire Medical Center/Dartmouth-Hitchcock Keene (CMC/DHK) in New Hampshire.
By Laura Mann
Dr. Richard Zito, a 1989 graduate of St. George’s University School of Medicine, has been named the president of the Suffolk County Medical Society.
Dr. Mark Lanzieri, SGUSOM ’85, made his 14th visit in 12 years to provide cardiology services to Grenada citizens as part of St. George’s University’s Visiting Cardiology Program this past January. He and his team provided consultation, cardiac testing, pacemaker implantations and referrals for those needing advanced care. In all, 140 patients were seen at the clinic and four pacemakers were implanted. All services were provided to the patients free of charge.
Dr. Lanzieri was accompanied on the trip by his wife, Mrs. Annie Lanzieri, a nurse technician; one of his partners from Maine, Dr. Robert Bender, a cardiologist; and Ms. Leigh Silver, Senior Clinical Specialist at Medtronic, who was on her third trip. Dr. Lanzieri has participated in the Visiting Cardiology Program since its inception, sometimes facilitating more than one clinic in a year. With the help of Medtronic, a US-based developer and manufacturer of medical technology products such as pacemakers and defibrillators, he has facilitated the donation of almost 50 pacemakers and leads, an approximate value of US $350,000.
“Dr. Lanzieri has singlehandedly contributed more to this program than any other visiting cardiologist, in particular when it comes to pacemaker implants,” said Johansen Sylvester, SGUSOM ’00, coordinator of the program. Dr. Lanzieri, who practices interventional cardiology in Maine, reciprocated the praise of his colleague, remarking that “Johansen Sylvester is singularly responsible for carrying the clinic on his shoulders to where it is now.”
Dr. Lanzieri said he is driven to give back to Grenada because of the way he felt welcomed as a student here. “Grenada is a very welcoming place and a beautiful island,” he said. “There has been much adversity that it has had to overcome, but it always lands on its feet.”
He first learned of SGU from friends who already studied here. He remembered just knowing he wanted to be a doctor from the time he was in high school and being inspired to become a cardiologist from his first year in grad school when he met his role model, a cardiologist, who, he recalls, “Seemed in love with what he did.” Twenty-seven years after he graduated, he marvels at the exponential growth of the campus and the breadth of the University’s curriculum. Of the changes he sees, Dr. Lanzieri said, “The only thing that hasn’t changed is the quality and ambition of the student body to be the best.”
Gonzalo Pou, DVM SGU ’11, helps provide low-cost veterinary care as a member of the Animal Welfare Society of South Florida, which was featured on WPLG Local 10 in Miami/Fort Lauderdale.
Gonzalo Pou, SGUSVM ’11, helps provide low-cost veterinary care as a member of the Animal Welfare Society of South Florida, which was featured on WPLG Local 10 in Miami/Fort Lauderdale.
By Marjorie Hack
Dr. Thomas Vazzana, SGUSOM 1985, says he sees the deterioration of human health on a regular basis as a partner at Vazzana and Bogin Cardiology Associates in Staten Island and cardiology division director for the Staten Island Physician Practice. Fast food and a sedentary lifestyle have taken their toll on many of his patients.
From left to right, Drs. Andrew Walter, Alana John, Marios Loukas, Stephen Osiro, Denzil Etiene, and Mitchell Muhleman
In March of 2011, St. George’s University School of Medicine created five research fellowship positions in the basic sciences for graduates who did not match in 2011. These unique one-year research fellowships allowed five graduates to strengthen their applications for post-graduate residency training in the United States, and in 2012, all five successfully matched to the residency programs to which they applied, such as family medicine, internal medicine and surgery.
“The combination of hard work, team effort, and dedication was the key in each fellow matching to their desired residency program,” said Dr. Marios Loukas, Assistant Dean of Basic and Allied Health Sciences. “I could not have asked for a better group of MDs to start this fellowship program. For the future fellows, I am confident that this program will help them achieve their future goals. Additionally, I feel that the success of this program was based on the strong foundation that St. George’s University provides to students.”
The fellows were provided the opportunity to focus on research, as well as taught in the basic sciences courses. They facilitated teaching in anatomy, bioethics and pharmacology small groups, and conducted ultrasound sessions in dry lab and simulation lab classes. These tasks allowed the fellows to improve on their skills as leaders, educators and further their knowledge of the various aspects of research. Each research fellow was assigned a group of approximately 25 students from the Basic Sciences as part of the Medical Student Research Institute (MSRI) to mentor and work with. Fellows were given projects to distribute to students on various topics on basic and clinical science research such as national cancer database SEER, meta-analysis review, ultrasound, surgical anatomy and technique and history of medicine papers.
Additionally, by presenting their research at national meetings and by publishing papers, graduates in this program improved their residency candidacy. Each fellow was able to author manuscripts as a first or second author for peer-reviewed medical journals. This aspect of the fellowship allowed the fellows to not only strengthen their CVs with publications but also to acquire the skills to conduct research, which is a required component of the vast majority of residencies.
According to Dr. Denzil Etienne, one of the five fellows who matched as a result of the program, “This opportunity, in conjunction with great camaraderie among the fellows, has indeed been a great experience and will serve as a nice platform for my future academic or clinical goals.”