California Southern I Governor's Newsletter February 2022

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Michael E. Lazarus, MBBCh, FACP, ACP Governor

Michael E. Lazarus, MBBCh, FACP, ACP Governor


Letter from the Governor

This is my third newsletter as your Governor of Southern California Region 1 and we remain in the grip of Covid-19. We were disheartened when the Omicron variant arrived to disappoint our collective expectations for an end to this seemingly interminable pandemic. As I write this, it seems as if the numbers are starting to decrease in Los Angeles County and there is good reason for optimism.

I noted this week the sad news that the coronavirus is killing Americans at far higher rates than people in other wealthy nations, like Australia and Japan. This is a sobering statistic and casts doubt as to whether the less “deadly” Omicron variant will spare the United States the mortality of past surges. Deaths have now surpassed the worst days of the January 2021 surge of the Delta variant, and are more than two-thirds as high as the record death tolls of last winter, when vaccines were largely unavailable. Despite our medical and scientific preeminence, the US has failed to vaccinate as many people as other large, wealthy countries and has lagged in providing boosters in many regions.

The prevailing political polarization and misinformation have certainly played a part. Many Americans express distrust in the government and decline to follow the recommendations of fact-based sources of accurate health information. They eschew being vaccinated, masking mandates or reducing their contacts during surges. The resulting American death toll has distanced us from our industrialized nation peers like Germany, Sweden and Canada. Since the first Omicron case in the United States in December 2021, the number of Americans who have died from Covid is a staggering 63 percent higher than a number of other large, wealthy nations, according to a New York Times analysis of mortality figures1. The only large European countries to exceed our Covid death rates this winter have been Russia, Ukraine, Poland, Greece and the Czech Republic, poorer nations where the best Covid treatments are in short supply.

It is at times like these that I am particularly grateful for an organization like ACP. Our College has embraced the scientific data, not shied away from fighting sources of misinformation, supporting and championing frontline physicians in their daily (and nightly) battle with the very worst effects of the pandemic over the two plus years it has upended our lives. I am particularly excited that we plan to have our Annual National Meeting in person in Chicago this year in April. I am looking forward to seeing you in person as well as my fellow Governors as we attend the meeting sessions. Likewise, in May, we hope to send a large delegation to Washington DC leadership day and continue our essential work of shedding the bright light of scientific rigor on the dark forces of apathy, ignorance and misinformation. To make a real difference we require a united voice and we anticipate our visit to the Capital will help invigorate all of us after over two years of isolating and energy sapping work in the maelstrom of the pandemic.


Michael E. Lazarus, MBBCh, FACP
Governor, ACP Southern California Region I

1U.S. Has Far Higher Covid Death Rate Than Other Wealthy Countries. The New York Times. Benjamin Mueller and Eleanor Lutz, Feb. 1, 2022.



ACP IM 2021 Hybrid Regional Meeting

The 2021 ACP Southern California Chapters I, II & III regional meeting took place virtually on Saturday, October 12, 2021. The meeting featured a great selection of speakers on a variety of interesting topics. Meeting attendees who wish to claim CME credits/MOC points can do so by accessing the Meeting Hub.

Tammy L. Lin, MD, MPH, FACP (Governor, S. California Region 3), Michael E. Lazarus, MBBCh, FACP, FRCP (Governor, S. California Region 1), and Daniel I. Kim, MD, MBA, FACP (Governor, S. California Region 2)

There were 220 posters submitted by medical students, residents/fellow and early career physicians from throughout Southern California. The following resident/fellows and medical students had winning posters from ACP S. California Region I:

Medical Students – Clinical Vignettes

1st place
Morcos Nakhla (UCLA)
Neurosyphilis: An Atypical Presentation and an Oral Chancre

2nd place
Kimberly Yan (UCLA)
Rhabdomyolysis, Subacute Thyroiditis, and Heart Failure in Murine Typhus

3rd place
Sally Senxi (USC)
Common Things Being Uncommon: Lung Cancer Masquerading as Atypical Pneumonia

Medical Student – Innovation (Combined)

1st place
Clare Moffatt (UCLA)
Clinical Ethnographic Research in Thoracic Surgery: Discovering Unmet Needs for Innovation

2nd place
Sophia Liang (Kaiser)
eBiopsy: Role of Medical Students in Improving Ectopic Pregnancy Care

3rd place
Marie Luff (UCLA)
Clinical Innovation in Pediatric Urology

Residents – Clinical Vignettes

1st place
Karen Resnick, MD (USC)
Following the Leads: A Case of Pacemaker associated SVC Syndrome

2nd place
Anisha Gaitonde, MD (UCLA-Olive View)
The Cardiac Conundrum: A Case of Immune Checkpoint Inhibitor Myocarditis

3rd place Kenneth Chow, MD (UCLA Harbor)
A Rare Case of Fusobacterium Necrophorum in Multiple Pyogenic Liver Abscesses

Residents – Research (Combined)

3rd place
Justin Devera, MD - (LAC+USC)
Adherence to Guidelines for Heart Rate in Ischemic Heart Disease in the Resident Primary CareSetting

Residents – Innovation (Combined)

1st place
Courtney Decan, MD (UCLA)
Multidisciplinary Telehealth Group Visits as a part of Medical Nutrition Therapy for Prediabetes in a Primary Care Setting

2nd place
Annasha Vyas, MD (LAC+USC)
Impact of an Outpatient Paracentesis Clinic on ED Utilization at a Safety Net Hospital

3rd place
Krista Dollar, MD (UCLA Harbor)
Improving Sepsis Core Measure Compliance: A Medicine QI Project

Residents and medical students who won first place received will receive a travel stipend and their posters will be submitted for presentation at the 2022 ACP national meeting. Second and third place winners received a cash award. Many thanks to the Poster Competition Co-Chair – Drs. Alina Popa, Roger Garrison and Vineet Gupta.

Drs. Vineet Gupta, Alina Popa, Roger Garrison

The Eisenhower Medical Center team was the winner of this year's Doctor's Dilemma® (“Jeopardy”) competition. The team will be sent to this year's ACP national meeting to compete with team from through the country. We wish them well. Many thanks to Drs. Jarod DuVall, Miguel Angel Pena Ruiz, Ali Motabar and Jason Bahk for their hard work in making the competition a great success!

Drs. Jarrod DuVall, Miguel Angel Pena Ruiz, Ali Motabar and Jason Bahk



Chapter Laureate

Dr. Edward L. Ha was the recipient of this year's Chapter Laureate Award. This prestigious award is awarded to the ACP member who has demonstrated by their example and conduct an abiding commitment to excellence in medical care, education, or research, and in service to their community. Congratulations to Dr. Ha!

Michael E. Lazarus, MBBCh, FACP, FRCP presenting Laureate Award to Edward Ha, MD, FACP



New ACP Fellows

We are happy to announce that the following people have been advanced to ACP Fellow in our region within the last 6 months.

Robert J. Bernstein, MD, FACP
William Carroll, MD, FACP
Erin Dowling, MD, FACP
Susan Duan, MD, FACP
Katherine M. Frishe, MD, FACP
Daniel G. Kahn, MD, FACP
May S. Kyi, MD, MBBS, FACP
Freddy Lim, MD, FACP
David M. K. I. Liu, MD, FACP
Antonio M. Pessegueiro, MD, FACP
Veronica Ramirez, MD, FACP
Inderpreet S. Saini, MD, FACP
Sina Shafiei, MD, FACP
Siddharth Singh, MBBS, FACP
Arielle Sommer, MD, FACP
Efrain Talamantes, MD, FACP
Pamela Tsing, MD, FACP
Grant A. Turner, MD, FACP
Noah Wald-Dickler, MD, FACP
Wei-I Wu, MD, FACP
Christopher C. Wong, DO, FACP




2021 Chapter Excellence Silver Award

I am pleased to announce that our chapter is in receipt of the 2021 Chapter Excellence Silver Award! The award recognizes chapters which successfully meet the standards for managing a chapter. These include activities such as undertaking efforts to increase advocacy efforts, collaborating with stakeholders to increase visibility of the ACP, holding competitions for members, providing chapter financial reports to members, having Medical Student and Resident/Fellow members on the Governor's Advisory council, retaining transitional and unpaid members, giving awards to chapter members.




New ACP Internal Medicine Interest Group (IMIG) at Kaiser Permanente

I would like to welcome our chapter's new Internal Medicine Interest Group (IMIG) at Kaiser Permanente. We look forward to having them participate in our chapter's many upcoming activities.

(Back Row): Mark Sanders, Daniel Zhong, Michael Najem (Front Row): Jonathan Qu, Mylinh Nam