Department of Medicine

Faculty Recognition

Master
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2021

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Dr.

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Dr. El-Serag appointed Adjunct Professor for the Department of Epidemiology at UT

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March: Dr. Hashem El-Serag, professor, Gastroenterology and Hepatology, and chair, Department of Medicine, has been appointed an adjunct professor in the Department of Epidemiology at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston’s School of Public Health.
 

Maya

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Dr. Maya Balakrishnan receives Star Patient Care Award

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March: Dr. Maya Balakrishnan received the Baylor College of Medicine Star Patient Care Award. She will be recognized for this award at Baylor’s Awards Day celebration May 2021.

Kalpesh

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Dr. Kalpesh Patel receives Star Patient Care Award

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March: Dr. Kalpesh Patel received the Baylor College of Medicine Star Patient Care Award. He will be recognized for this award at Baylor’s Awards Day celebration May 2021.

Dr.

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Dr. Richa Shukla to Serve as Associate Program Director

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Feb. 4: Dr. Richa Shukla will step into the role of the associate program director for the Baylor GI fellowship at Ben Taub Hospital. Dr. Shukla’s responsibilities will include overseeing clinical operation for the fellows at Ben Taub, participating in fellowship recruitment and curriculum development.

Dr.

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Dr. Mimi Tan to Serve as T32 Associate Program Director

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Feb. 4: Dr. Mimi Tan will join the fellowship leadership in a new role of T32 associate program director. In this role, Dr. Tan will provide mentoring and support of the T32 fellows, oversee the T32 lecture series and participate in T32 fellow recruitment.

Sharmila

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Dr. Sharmila Anandasabapathy trains on Smart Pod

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Dr. Sharmila Anandasabapathy, professor of gastroenterology and hepatology, and director of Baylor Global Health is training Smart Pod providers through case-based telementoring sessions focused on COVID-19 diagnosis, treatment and vaccination.

Mohamed

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Dr. Mohamed Othman inducted as an AGA Fellow (AGAF)

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February: Dr. Mohamed Othman was recently inducted into the American Gastroenterology Association Fellowship. AGA honors superior professional achievement in clinical private or academic practice and in basic or clinical research with fellowship in the organization (AGAF). Fellowships are awarded to members whose accomplishments and contributions demonstrate personal commitment to the field of gastroenterology.

Dr.

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Dr. Suarez Promoted to Director of GI Fellowship

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Dr. Milena Gould Suarez, associate professor of medicine, will step into the role of the program director for GI Fellowship.  To allow seamless transition, Drs. Hou and Suarez will serve as co-directors for the current academic year.  Dr. Suarez has made substantial contributions to the education mission of the Section and the College.  She served as the course director for second-year medical student Gastroenterology and Hepatology module since 2014, associate program director for the Fellowship since 2015, and learning community squad director at the medical school since 2019. 

Jason

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Dr. Hou Serves as Interim Section Chief of GI and Hepatology

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Dr. Jason Hou, associate professor of medicine, will serve as the interim section chief of gastroenterology and hepatology at the Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center. Dr. Hou has served as the program director of the GI Fellowship for the last five years.  He is a clinician scientist with grant funding from the NIH and the Veterans Administration. He brings a wealth of administrative, research and clinical experience to his new role. Dr. Rhonda Cole will continue to serve as the associate chief of the VA GI section.  

Waqar

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Dr. Qureshi selected to TSGE

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Dr. Waqar Qureshi, professor, Gastroenterology and Hepatology, has been selected to the Education Committee of the Texas Society of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy.

Dr.

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Dr. Graham to Receive Beaumont Prize

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Dr. David Graham has been selected to receive the 2021 William Beaumont Prize in Gastroenterology. This prize recognizes an individual who has made a unique, outstanding contribution of major importance to the field of gastroenterology. Dr. Graham's fundamental discoveries and contributions to the field of GI infections and injury have had a world-wide impact on the care of patients with digestive disease.

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2020

Terms
Reena

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Dr. Chokshi Awarded for Excellence in Patient Care

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Dr. Reena Chokshi received the Baylor College of Medicine Early Career Faculty Award for Excellence in Patient Care. The Annual Early Career Faculty Awards for Excellence in Patient Care honors outstanding contributions to the College’s clinical mission by up and coming Baylor faculty members.

Ruben

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Dr. Hernaez Awarded for Excellence in Patient Care

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Dr. Ruben Hernaez received the Baylor College of Medicine Early Career Faculty Award for Excellence in Patient Care. The Annual Early Career Faculty Awards for Excellence in Patient Care honors outstanding contributions to the College’s clinical mission by up and coming Baylor faculty members.

Gyanprakash

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Dr. Ketwaroo Awarded for Excellence in Patient Care

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Dr. Gyanprakash Ketwaroo received the Baylor College of Medicine Early Career Faculty Award for Excellence in Patient Care. The Annual Early Career Faculty Awards for Excellence in Patient Care honors outstanding contributions to the College’s clinical mission by up and coming Baylor faculty members.

kalpeshpatel

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Dr. Patel to Join the World Endoscopy Organization Education Webinar Committee

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Dr. Kal Patel, associate professor, Gastroenterology and Hepatology, was invited as one of the 45 international endoscopists to join the World Endoscopy Organization Education Webinar Committee. The aim of the committee of experts is to create free-access, enduring educational videos for GI Endoscopy training across the world. 

Dr.

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Dr. Khaderi Selected for Baylor College of Medicine Career Advancement Series

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Dr. Saira Khaderi has been selected for the Assistant Professors 2020-2021 cohort for the Baylor College of Medicine Career Advancement Series. The goal of this series is to provide tools to enhance leadership skills and assist with professional and personal goals for advancement for Baylor College of Medicine early career and mid-career faculty in all departments, academic centers and schools.

Dr.

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Dr. Suarez Receives Norton Rose Fulbright Faculty Excellence Award

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Dr. Milena Gould Suarez received the Norton Rose Fulbright Faculty Excellence Award for Educational Leadership. This award recognizes faculty for their significant leadership in a range of curriculum development or educational administration which matches or exceeds the record presented in the standard-setting. Dr. Gould will be recognized for her accomplishment during Baylor’s Awards Day celebration in May 2021.

Dr.

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Dr. El-Serag Among the Most Cited Authors

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Dr. Hashem El-Serag, professor and Margaret M. Alkek Distinguished Chair in Medicine, leads PLoS Biology/Mendeley's global list of 217 Baylor faculty among the mot cited authors in their disciplines. His citation indicators place him in the top-cited 2 percent of scientists in gastroenterology and hepatology for 2019 and over his career.

Waqar

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Dr. Qureshi Selected as a 2020 Texas Super Doctors Finalist

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Dr. Waqar Qureshi, professor of gastroenterology and hepatology, has been selected as a 2020 Texas Super Doctors finalist.

Fasiha

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Dr. Kanwal Invited as Co-Chair of AGA GI Division Chief’s Consortium

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Dr. Fasiha Kanwal has been invited to serve as the Co-Chair of the American Gastroenterological Association GI Division Chief’s Consortium. This group serves as an important platform for GI Division Leaders to meet and exchange ideas, share mutual concerns and develop strategies to enhance the core missions of clinical care, education and research while benefitting the GI community.

Mohamed

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Dr. Othman Selected as the William T. Butler Endowed Chair

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Dr. Mohamed Othman has been selected as the William T. Butler Endowed Chair for Distinguished Faculty for his expertise in advanced endoscopy practice and training.

Waqar

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Dr. Waqar Qureshi Received the Master Clinician Award for Excellence in Patient Care

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Dr. Waqar Qureshi received the Master Clinician Award for Excellence in Patient Care. This award recognizes faculty for their exemplary contributions to the patient care mission of Baylor College of Medicine through clinical excellence, leadership, mentoring, clinical innovation and continuous service to the Baylor community.

Dr.

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Dr. Suarez Part of ACG SCOPY Award-winning Project

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The Dan L Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center Office of Outreach and Health Disparities has been selected for the American College of Gastroenterology 2020 SCOPY Award, “Grand SCOPY,” for its “Light the Night Blue: A Colorectal Cancer Awareness Initiative.” The assistance of Dr. Milena Gould Suarez, associate professor, with informative media appearances helped disseminate the information city-wide. ACG’s SCOPY recognizes achievements in education and awareness efforts for colorectal cancer prevention.

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2019

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Yamini

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Dr. Natarajan - ABIM 2019 Gastroenterology Standard Setting Group

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June 27: Dr. Yamini Natarajan has been selected to participate in the ABIM 2019 Gastroenterology Standard Setting Committee. Standard Setting is an important step in development of the ABIM board certification exam. Clinical expertise in the certification discipline is an essential requirement to be considered for selection. This invitation underscores Dr. Natarajan's clinical excellence and its recognition at the national level.

Dr.

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Dr. Mindikoglu Receives MacDonald Research Fund Award

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June 5: Dr. Ayse Mindikoglu’s study entitled, “The Effect of Dawn to Sunset Fasting on Metabolic Syndrome and Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease” has been funded by the 2019 Roderick D. MacDonald Research Award. (Total Budget: $41,910). The goal of the study is to look at the metabolic biochemical alterations during the fast that occurs during Ramadan to see if it can be applicable to treating other metabolic disorders.

RJ

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Dr. Sealock Receives Early Career Faculty Award for Excellence in Patient Care

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May 4: Dr. Robert J. Sealock received the Baylor College of Medicine Early Career Faculty Award for Excellence in Patient Care. He was recognized for this award at Baylor’s Awards Day celebration May 16, 2019.

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Dr. Ayse Leyla Mindikoglu Awarded FAASLD Designation

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May 3: Dr. Ayse Leyla Mindikoglu, associate professor, has been awarded the Fellow of American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases designation. This designation is created for AASLD members who epitomize excellence and contributions to AASLD and to the field of liver disease.

Terms
Dr.

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Dr. El-Serag to Lead American Gastroenterological Association

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April 20: Dr. Hashem El-Serag, chair of the Department of Medicine and professor will become the 114th president of the American Gastroenterological Association in May 2019. The association includes more than 16,000 members who are involved in all aspects of the science, practice and advancement of gastroenterology. Read a profile about El-Serag's journey from his native Libya to reaching the top of his field in this profile in the May issue of Gastroenterology

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2019 Castle Connolly list of Top Doctors

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April 19: The 2019 Castle Connolly list of Top Doctors is out, and many Gastroenterology and Hepatology faculty made the list. The list included Dr. Sharmila Anandasabapathy, professor, Dr. Hashem El-Serag, professor, Dr. David Graham, professor, Dr. Jason Hou, associate professor, Dr. Manreet Kaur, assistant professor, Dr. Kalpesh Patel, associate professor, Dr. Waqar Qureshi, professor, Dr. Jim Schwartz, associate professor, Dr. John Vierling, professor and Dr. Isaac Raijman, clinical assistant professor.

Loan

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Dr. Ho Receives Power of Professionalism Award

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April 12: Loan Ho, assistant professor, received a Power of Professionalism Award from The Center for Professionalism. The award was presented by Dr. Ellen Friedman on March 28, 2019, as recognition of her “...commitment to education, accountability, altruism and integrity.” Recipients of the award are recognized as embodying the principles of professionalism and “[a] person who treats all people with respect, has control of a difficult situation, is compassionate, and still completes patient care in a timely matter...”

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Drs. Shukla and Anandasabapathy Selected as Women of Excellence

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April 4: Dr. Richa Shukla, assistant professor, and Dr. Sharmila Anandasabapathy, professor, have been selected as Women of Excellence at Baylor College of Medicine. This title recognizes faculty, staff, students, and trainees who exemplify excellence as well as Baylor’s other values of respect, integrity, innovation and teamwork.

Dr.

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Dr. Shukla Receives That’s The Way Award 

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March 4: Dr. Richa Shukla was selected as the recipient for the ‘That’s The Way Player of the Month’ award that was presented to her Feb. 28 for positive feedback/comments from patients as a part of the Press Ganey Survey. Dr. Shukla has had continuous success in education, clinical care and research.

2014-2015

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Dr. Khalaf Receives 2018 Young Investigator Grant Award in Pancreatitis 

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Feb. 26: Dr. Natalia Khalaf, assistant professor, has been selected to receive grant funding from the American Pancreatic Association as part of the APA Young Investigator in Pancreatitis Grant Program. Her research project is entitled, "Acute Pancreatitis and Pancreatic Cancer: Improving Early Detection."

Sharmila

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Dr. Anandasabapathy Touted as Role Model in Field of GI Cancer Detection Research

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Feb. 11: Congratulations to Dr. Sharmila Anandasabapathy, professor, on being acknowledged as a role model in the field of GI cancer detection research. Dr. Anandasabapathy talks with her daughter about her cancer research locally and around the world in her "Ask Me about My Research" video.

Dr.

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Dr. Jarbrink-Sehgal Receives Ph.D. Degree from Karolinska Institutet

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Jan. 28: Dr. Maria Jarbrink-Sehgal has completed her Ph.D. degree at Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm Sweden. Her thesis is entitled, "Epidemiological and pathophysiological studies on diverticular disease in the colon" and was publicly defended in the auditorium J3:11 Birger and Margareta Blombäck, Karolinska University Hospital on Jan. 7, 2019.

Opponent:

Clinical Associate Professor David Humes (University of Nottingham, Department of Surgery, Division of Nottingham Digestive Disease Centre, School of Medicine)

Mary

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Dr. Estes Named Fellow by National Academy of Inventors

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Jan. 11: Dr. Mary Estes, professor, was one of 148 renowned academic inventors named fellow by the National Academy of Inventors. Dr. Estes holds nine patents in the field of gastrointestinal infections, all of which have been licensed. Her work has led to the creation of diagnostic assays to detect noroviruses, assays to evaluate inactivation methods and antibodies to noroviruses and a norovirus vaccine. Her rotavirus research generated, among other things, the development of a rotavirus virus-like particle (VLP) vaccine, with potential for humans and animals, which the animal health company ImmuCell licensed to develop an antibody product to protect newborn calves from rotavirus.

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Johanna

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Dr. Chan Ranked Among Top Five Highest-Scoring Physicians in Press Ganey Scores

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Dec. 21: Dr. Johanna Chan, assistant professor, ranked among the top five highest-scoring individual physicians in the Department of Medicine Faculty Group Practice in the “Standard Care Provider Rank” on recent Press Ganey scores.

RJ

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Dr. Sealock Receives Early Career Faculty Award for Excellence in Patient Care

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Dec. 21: Dr. Robert J. Sealock received the Baylor College of Medicine Early Career Faculty Award for Excellence in Patient Care. He will be recognized for this award at Baylor’s Awards Day celebration on Thursday, May 16, 2019 at 3:30 p.m. in Cullen Auditorium.

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Drs. Hernaez and Ketwaroo Selected for 2019-2020 AGA Future Leaders Program

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Dec. 11: Dr. Ruben Hernaez and Dr. Avinash Ketwaroo, both assistant professors, were selected to be part of the American Gastroenterological Association's Future Leaders Program, which provides leadership development for early career physicians and scientists who have the potential to make a significant impact on the specialty. 

Kalpesh

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Dr. Patel Selected as New Director of Advanced Endoscopy Program

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Dec. 7: Dr. Kalpesh Patel has been selected as the new director of the Advanced Endoscopy Program at Baylor College of Medicine.

Dr.

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Dr. Shukla Selected to Attend 2019 Women's Leadership Conference

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Nov. 30: Dr. Richa Shukla has been selected to attend the 2019 Women's Leadership Conference in Washington, DC. Dr. Shukla was one of few attendees selected to attend the conference.

Dr.

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Dr. Suarez Appointed to Selection Committee for Baylor's Norton Rose Fulbright Faculty Excellence Award

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Nov. 14: Dr. Milena Gould Suarez has been appointed to join the Selection Committee for Baylor College of Medicine Norton Rose Fulbright Faculty Excellence Award. Dr. Gould Suarez's work on this committee will strengthen the College’s efforts to honor outstanding contributions by Baylor faculty members to our education mission.

Waqar

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Dr. Qureshi to Serve as Course Director for American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy’s DDW Course

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Nov. 2: Dr. Waqar Qureshi, professor, has been asked to serve as course director for the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy’s Advanced Polypectomy and Hemorrhoid Therapies hands-on course to be held at Digestive Disease Week May 19, 2019.

Mohamed

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Dr. Othman Selected Special Section Editor for Focal Points Section of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy

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Oct. 2: Dr. Mohamed Othman has been selected to be the Special Section editor for the Focal Points Section of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy. GIE publishes original, peer-reviewed articles on endoscopic procedures used in the study, diagnosis, and treatment of digestive diseases. “At the Focal Point” offers all readers an opportunity to share observations with colleagues.

Jason

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Dr. Hou Promoted to Associate Professor

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Sept. 27: Dr. Jason Hou has been promoted to associate professor (tenured). Dr. Hou has had remarkable continuous success in education, clinical care and research. His knowledge will continue to contribute to the Baylor community, the field of gastroenterology and the health and welfare of our patients.

Terms
Rajesh

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Dr. Rajesh Shah to Serve on Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation Patient Education Committee

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April 19: Dr. Rajesh Shah has been invited to serve on the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation's (CCFA) Patient Education Committee. His three-year term will begin in June 2018. CCFA is the leading foundation in inflammatory bowel disease. The foundation sponsors basic, translational and clinical research, and educational programs for patients, caregivers, and health care professionals, while providing supportive services to help patients and their families cope with these chronic intestinal diseases. The Patient Education Committee guides and supports the foundation’s mission and its initiatives, prioritized through its recent strategic planning process. With his new role, Dr. Shah will be able to make significant contribution to the wellbeing of patients with inflammatory bowel disease.

Kalpesh

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Dr. Kalpesh Patel Promoted to Associate Professor

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April 5: Dr. Kalpesh Patel was promoted to Associate Professor in the Department of Medicine. Dr. Patel is a great leader, educator and clinician. He has been a key player in the growth of our endoscopy program and the Section’s continued commitment to our fellows and education.

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Dr. Rhonda Cole Recognized At Women of Excellence Program

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March 30: Dr. Rhonda Cole has been selected as a Woman of Excellence at Baylor College of Medicine. This title recognizes faculty, staff, students, and trainees who exemplify excellence as well as Baylor’s other values of respect, integrity, innovation and teamwork.

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Dr. Yamini Natarajan Joins American Gastroenterological Association's Government Affairs Committee

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March 16: Dr. Yamini Natarajan, assistant professor, Gastroenterology and Hepatology, has been selected to join the American Gastroenterological Association’s (AGA) Government Affairs Committee. This committee advocates AGA research, determines policies and influences the outcome of proposed and existing regulations.

Mary

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Dr. Mary Estes Receives Two Prestigious American Gastroenterological Association Recognitions

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March 2: Dr. Mary K. Estes, professor of virology and microbiology and medicine and emeritus founder of the TMC Digestives Diseases Center, has been awarded two prestigious American Gastroenterological Association recognitions. This marks the first and possibly the only time an AGA member has been awarded two recognition prizes in the same year. The AGA honored Dr. Estes with the William Beaumont Prize in Gastroenterology, which recognizes an individual who has made a unique, outstanding contribution of major importance to the field of gastroenterology. Dr. Estes’ fundamental discoveries and contributions to the field of gastrointestinal infections has had a world-wide impact on the care of children due to her work on rotavirus and individuals of all ages due to her work on norovirus. The AGA also awarded Dr. Estes the Distinguished Mentor Award, which recognizes an individual who has made a lifelong effort dedicated to the mentoring of trainees in the field of gastroenterology and for achievements as outstanding mentors throughout their careers.

Mohamed

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Dr. Mohamed Othman Receives Star Faculty Award for Excellence in Patient Care

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March 2: Dr. Mohamed Othman, associate professor, Gastroenterology and Hepatology, received the Star Faculty Award for Excellence in Patient Care. This award honors outstanding contributions by Baylor faculty members to the College’s clinical mission. Dr. Othman was nominated by section chief, Dr. Fasiha Kanwal.

Andrea

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Dr. Andrea Bradford to Serve as Clinical Supervisor over New Collaboration

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March 2: Dr. Andrea Bradford, assistant professor, Gastroenterology and Hepatology, who has been working as a clinical psychologist at McNair will be operating as clinical supervisor over a new collaboration between the Section of Gastroenterology and Hepatology and the Department of Psychiatry. She will provide a clinical rotation to a clinical psychology intern.

Fasiha

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Dr. Fasiha Kanwal Appointed Section of Gastroenterology and Hepatology Chief

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Feb. 26: Dr. Fasiha Kanwal, professor, has been selected and has agreed to serve as the new chief for the Section of Gastroenterology and Hepatology in the Department of Medicine. She has served in the interim chief role since January 2017.

Dr. Fasiha Kanwal received her training in gastroenterology and hepatology from the University of California Los Angeles, and received research training with a masters in Science, Health Services. She joined Saint Louis University as an assistant professor in 2006 and moved to Baylor College of Medicine in 2011. She is currently a tenured professor in the Department of Medicine.

Dr. Kanwal has a strong track record of scientific achievements. Her research focuses on assessing and improving quality and outcomes of care in individuals with chronic liver diseases, including those with chronic hepatitis C, hepatitis B virus, nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, cirrhosis, and hepatocellular cancer. She was the recipient of competitive faculty awards, including the Research Excellence in GI and Liver Award (2007) and Emerging Leaders in Gastroenterology Award (2008). She has had continuous research funding since her fellowship, including a current Veterans Administration Merit Review Award and a Cancer Prevention Research in Texas grant. In total, she has been awarded 14 grants at the principal investigator level and has published more than 150 peer-reviewed manuscripts. She also serves as one of the core directors for our NIH-funded Digestive Diseases Center.

Nationally, she has participated in several service and leadership roles and also has been asked on numerous occasions to chair and serve on scientific sessions, abstract review committees, and grant review study sections. Currently, she serves as the chair of the AASLD Practice Metrics Committee. She also is the editor-in-chief of one of the leading clinical journals in digestive disease, Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology.

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Dr. Loan Ho Promoted to Assistant Professor

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Feb. 16: Dr. Loan Ho, nurse practitioner, Gastroenterology and Hepatology, has been promoted to assistant professor. Dr. Ho is the first nurse practitioner to be promoted to this rank in this section.