Rhode Island Governor's Newsletter December 2023

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Kwame O. Dapaah-Afriyie, MBchB, FACP, ACP Governor

Kwame O. Dapaah-Afriyie, MBchB, FACP, ACP Governor


Governor's Welcome

Another year is coming to an end and I'm sure most of you like me are wondering how fast the year went by. The end of every year affords us the opportunity to reflect on our goals for the year, all of which may not have been achieved. As we brood over unfulfilled goals, unexpected events in our nation and globally, we still have things to be thankful for. We just celebrated Thanksgiving! Thanksgiving is the understanding that blessings are hiding all around us, finding and choosing to focus on them. It is finding the good in bad times and even rejoicing in sorrow. It is noticing the color of flowers, the shape of clouds, the smell of fresh bread, and the comfort of a soft pillow at night.

Increasing prevalence of mental illness in our society is a major concern. Sadly, traumatic incidents in hospitals, workplace violence due to abuse and assault of physicians and other healthcare personnel are on the rise. Amidst these challenges who takes care of the healthcare professional? How many of us gravitate toward other colleagues who need assistance and a shoulder to lean on? Even a lion gets tired and sometimes gets injured. Sometimes, some of us just need another person to just to say, “all will be well.” Others need to be reminded of the strategic flight plans of eagles which serve to balance their hunting, eating and resting to prevent depletion of their energy reserves, to help us maintain our motivation and vigor.

We are like pencils; the best part of us being the significant marks we make on others as we positively touch their lives. Though we may make mistakes, we learn from them, “erase those unintended marks' and grow in our knowledge. We need one another to stay sharpened!

There is beauty in every lump of clay, it takes the skill, patience, and dedication of an artist like Michelangelo to make that evident.

In this final chapter of 2023 and in the coming year let's endeavor to stand with each other, leave no one behind and check on family members and friends.

May the hope this season enhance our resolve and deepen our efforts to enrich all domains of our humanity.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays



Committee Highlights

By Sarah Freeman MD, FACP – Early Career Physician Committee

This year the early career physician (ECP) committee is under the leadership of Drs. Sarah Freman, Atin Jindal, Pinar Arikan, Becca Cangemi and Rob Velasco.

The ECP committee is dedicated to advancing professional development and fostering networking opportunities for physicians within 16 years of graduation. Noteworthy recent events include a vibrant discussion led by Drs. Atin Jindal and Ross Hilliard on the profound impact of technologies like ChatGPT in medicine. Additionally, Dr. Stephanie Catanese provided an insightful introduction to physician coaching.


Our upcoming event, co-sponsored by the Society of Hospital Medicine RI chapter, is a networking and writer's workshop. Dr. Shoshana Herzig, senior editor for the Journal of Hospital Medicine, and Dr. Arkadiy Finn, senior editor for the Journal of Brown Hospital Medicine, will share valuable tips and strategies to help you publish your research, case reports, and quality improvement projects. Join us on Wednesday, December 13th, from 6-9 pm at Tavolo Tuscan Grille in Warwick. Please RSVP here if you are interested in attending.




  • Dr. Yul D. Ejnes is the recipient of the 2023/24 Alfred Stengel Memorial Award for Outstanding Service to the American College of Physicians.
  • Dr. Jennifer Jeremiah is the recipient of the 2023/24 Faith T. Fitzgerald Award for Outstanding Educator of Residents and Fellows from the American College of Physicians.
  • Dr. Kelly A. McGarry has been elected to Mastership of the American College of Physicians.
  • Dr. Mariah Stump is now the Secretary of the RI Medical Society(RIMS). A delegation from our chapter attended the RIMS Annual meeting which was held on 09/25/23.
  • The Doctors' dilemma: an annual medical jeopardy for medical residents was held on 11/02/2023 at Alpert Medical School.Thanks Dr. Alicia Crowley and Drs. Andrew Foderaro and Lynn Bowlby (who were the judges) for working to ensure a competitive and an exciting evening.
    1. Kent Hospital: Drs Houda Abdelrahman, Haya Al-Suradi and Husam Abu-Nejim.
    2. Landmark Medical Center: Drs Sagar Patel, Hossam Mustafa, and Kanishka Uttam Chandani.
    3. Lifespan: Drs Taylor Wernert, Kamel Antoun, and Stephanos Vassilopoulos.
    4. Roger Williams: Drs Yohannes Mengesha, Gabriel Salk, and Chiwoo Song.

The medical residency programs were represented by:

Residents from Kent hospital (in the picture below) repeated their winning performance after overcoming the stiff competition from the Lifespan residents. Their win came via a sudden death format which became necessary due to a tie after the final round.




Council Meeting

The Governor's council voted to have in-person meetings only in the Summer and to continue using the Zoom format for three other virtual meetings. Next Governor's council meeting will be held on 12/06/2023.



Annual Meeting

Annual Chapter Scientific meeting is scheduled for 03/20/2024.

Thanks to the Co-Chairs: Dr Jennifer O’Brien, Dr Alisa Merolli, Dr Karen Woolfall-Quinn, Jinen Thakkar for work done so far, to our members who have volunteered to be speakers and many others who are working tirelessly on the necessary preparations.

Abstract notifications have been sent out to all members. Let's work with our students and residents to highlight the interesting clinical cases and research activities in our residency programs and clinical practices.



Mentorship Zone

What are we learning? Who are we learning from? Who are we transferring insights to?

Iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.

The one who waters will also be watered.


I reached out to some of our experienced colleagues to have them share pertinent insights which will be beneficial to our medical students, residents and Early Career Physicians.

Brief background:

Peter Hollman, - Chief Medical Officer (CMO) of Brown Medicine, recipient of the RI ACP Chapter Irving Beck award in 2023

Peter Hollmann, MD is Chief Medical Officer for Brown Medicine, the practice group of Brown University, Warren Alpert School of Medicine Department of Medicine, where he is an Associate Clinical Professor. Until 2015, he was Associate Chief Medical Officer for Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island. He has a part time internal medicine and geriatric primary care practice in RI. He is Board Chair of the American Geriatrics Society. He has been active in creating geriatric measures for Medicare and NCQA. He has over 30 years of experience in medical management, including as a medical director of an HMO with a Medicare product, a Medicaid plan, and a commercial PPO. He has been a long-term care hospital, nursing home, and home care medical director. He is past Chair of the CPT Editorial Panel and currently a member of the RBRVS Update Committee (RUC). He is a member of the US Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Council on Graduate Medical Education. His major duties presently involve practice transformation, development of systems of care and population management. Much of his career has been devoted to quality improvement at the local and national level.

1. Why did you choose to specialize in Internal Medicine?

I wanted to do primary care because I wanted to focus on long-term relationships with patients. “Generalism” also appealed to me, and I was not as interested in highly specialized knowledge on one topic area. Primary Care also included an interest in behavioral health.

2. What are the 2-3 major factors that have helped you in this profession?

It was my good fortune to be associated with great people in different places. I ended up doing part time practice and part time administration. I did a geriatrics fellowship to be a better internist while waiting for my future partner to finish his public health service commitment and that set me on a path of being very involved in my subspecialty in the policy arena.

3. What has kept you in this profession in the midst of the challenges?

I have always liked my work and my colleagues. I am giving up primary care altogether as I prepare to be semi-retired.

4. Any thoughts you want to share….

Medicine is a changing field in terms of science and structure. Everything changes. The key is to adapt and remember the primary goals of our profession. If you do that, you will be OK.



From National ACP

The 2024 ACP Annual National meeting will be held in Boston from Thursday, April 18, 2024 to Saturday, April 20, 2024.

Additional information about the annual meeting is available at the ACP website.