Because access to care is not always guaranteed, we’ve been working to help close the gap on the nation’s rheumatologist shortage through our fellowship initiative . In June, we announced four new fellowship awards for 2019. One of those grants was offered to Vanderbilt University Medical Center, which recently announced a three‑year pediatric fellowship to Dr. Matthew Clark. Continue reading Meet Matthew Clark: One of Our Newest Foundation-Sponsored Fellows!
Because access to care is not always guaranteed, we’ve been working to help close the gap on the nation’s rheumatologist shortage through our fellowship initiative. In June, we announced four new fellowship awards. One of those grants was offered to SUNY Downstate Medical Center, which has been awarded to Dr. Vin Sivan Pillai.
Already serving a very diverse community, the SUNY Downstate program is also addressing the needs of young adults transitioning from pediatric to adult care. This innovative program, involving rheumatologists, urban health planners, the city of Brooklyn and the Arthritis Foundation, seeks to understand the needs of young adult patients.
Dr. Pillai will be a welcome addition, with a very diverse medical background spanning several countries. He explained his journey: “I grew up in Dubai in a very multicultural environment. I decided to go to medical school in India to get some real-world experience. During my time there, I had to learn two new languages to converse with my patients. I worked in underserved areas where my patients didn’t have easy access to health care.”
Dr. Pillai moved to the UK for his residency, hoping to get into endocrinology. After completing his training, he decided to pursue better opportunities in the U.S. During his residency at Danbury Hospital in Connecticut, Dr. Pillai got interested in rheumatology.
“I saw some really interesting cases while on the rheumatology rotation. These cases were complex and required collaboration with providers from other fields,” he says. “Not only would I get the chance to sharpen my knowledge to become a well-rounded rheumatologist, but I would also get to work with providers and caregivers from other fields. I cherish the opportunity of establishing meaningful long-term relationships, and there is nothing more rewarding than seeing my patients make progress.”
“My training in India, the UK and America have given me a strong sense of cultural awareness, which helps me connect with my patients on a much more personal level,” he explains. “After completing the fellowship, I hope to work at a teaching hospital.”
Thanks to the generosity of our donors, Dr. Pillai is just one new rheumatologist who’s helping bridge the gap in the shortage of much-needed specialists.
Dr. Crow is All-In for What We’re Fighting For
Dr. Mary K. Crow is physician-in-chief and chair of the department of medicine at Hospital for Special Surgery in New York. She has devoted her entire career to unraveling the cellular and molecular mechanisms in autoimmune diseases. Continue reading Dr. Mary Crow, Champion of Yes in New York
Many of us know that access to care isn’t always a guarantee. All too often, seeing a rheumatologist includes traveling out of state because of the severe rheumatologist shortage. Last year we committed to closing this gap by offering Fellowship grants to universities in underserved areas. After careful consideration, we recently selected five schools to receive fellowship grants to help doctors advance in this specialty field. The institutions were offered $150,000 to launch new slots for established fellowship programs.
We are thrilled to be able to offer these awards because of the impact the newly funded positions will have on their communities. Executive Director Kelsey Woods told us this of the grant given to a school in her area, “The University of Washington has long been a partner of the Arthritis Foundation in the fight to both control and cure this debilitating disease. We are so proud to continue to fund a rheumatology fellowship right here in Seattle at the UW. Healthcare access is and must continue to be a top priority in the region, and this investment is confirmation that we will continue to fight for that.”
Three adult and two pediatric rheumatology fellowships have been offered and accepted by the follow programs:
Earlier this month, the Medical and Scientific Committee of the Arthritis Foundation, Northern California office held the 50th Annual Knowles Lecture at the Mission Bay Conference Center at the University of California, San Francisco.
The Knowles Lecture was established with a leadership gift from Harold W. Knowles to the Arthritis Foundation’s Northern California office in 1966. For 50 years, internationally renowned scientific and clinical leaders from universities and medical centers have addressed leading issues in the care and treatment of arthritis and related diseases.
Continue reading Highlights of the 50th Annual Knowles Lecture