Dr. Addo-Yirenkyi was born in Accra, Ghana. He always had a passion for science but did not realize the impact studying and applying could have on lives, which lead him to become a physician. While preparing the board medical boards, he had the privilege of working as a medical scribe and clinical documentation specialist in Victorville, California, this is where he first noticed the disparities in health care and spurred him to pursue a career where the underserved and marginalized in society would be his focus. While in residency, he understood and as such became very passionate about metabolic diseases and the impact a good diet can have on the well-being of the population as a whole, especially in the elderly. The disease that intrigues him the most is dementia. He believes it to plague so many of us and yet we do not seem to have the answers, it is his hope that he will be able to help alleviate as many of his patients as possible for this ailment. His hobbies include cycling, soccer (watching and playing), reading and learning languages. His favorite teams include the LA Lakers and Liverpool FC in the EPL. He and his family love the weather and cultural diversity in Southern California.
Dr. Arina Cheng was born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii. She earned her MBBS degree from West China Medical College of Medicine, Sichuan University and completed her residency in internal medicine at New York Presbyterian Queens. Her interest in geriatrics stemmed from the rapport she developed with her patients during her training. She enjoys learning about her patients as a person and providing emotional support in their time in need. Dr. Cheng hopes to become a geriatric hospitalist at an academic center and to help inspire the next generation of medical students and residents.
Dr. Helen Chernicoff graduated UCLA medical school in 1996. She then trained in family medicine at Kaiser Permanente Woodland Hills and completed a two-year health services research fellowship at UCLA. Helen truly enjoyed working as a general family physician, as a health services researcher, and as a summer camp medical director and physician. However, after a profound experience caring for her mother-in-law with multiple medical conditions and advanced dementia during her last five years of life, Dr. Chernicoff decided to specialize in geriatrics.
Dr. Maria Dueñas was born in Santiago, Chile and emigrated to northern California at 7 years old. She graduated from UCLA in 2009 with a Bachelor’s degree in Psychobiology. She received her MD degree in 2014 from New York University School of Medicine. She then completed her residency in Primary Care/Social Internal Medicine at Montefiore Medical Center in Bronx, NY. She has worked for over 3 years at Mount Sinai Hospital in NYC as a primary care physician in a high-risk primary care clinic where her passion for geriatric care grew immensely, including her appreciation for home-based care.
Dr. Tarek Eid was born in Pittsburgh and raised in Alexandria, Egypt. He received his Bachelor’s degree in Physiology at The University of Arizona. He then received his medical degree from The University of Arizona College of Medicine – Phoenix. He completed his residency in internal medicine at UC Irvine. Dr. Eid’s passion for geriatric medicine began while caring for his grandfather and continued to blossom as he cared for his patients throughout residency. He has a particular interest in healthy aging. After fellowship, he plans on pursuing a career in outpatient geriatrics, where he can continue helping his patients live a healthy and independent life.
Dr. Chelsea Gong was born and raised in the Central Valley of California (Visalia/Fresno). She graduated from Fresno State in 2014 with a BS in Biology and received her MD in 2018 from UC Davis School of Medicine in the Rural PRIME program. She completed her residency in Internal Medicine in the Health Equity and Disparities Track. In medical school/residency, she became more interested in the role that culture plays in health disparities and is planning to continue learning how the numerous cultures present in the Central Valley play a role in the health of the older adult population there.
Dr. Tomonao Hashimoto was born and raised in Tokyo, Japan. He graduated with an M.D. from Tokai University School of Medicine in 2012. After spending some years pursuing his medical career in Internal Medicine in Japan, Dr. Hasimoto completed his residency in Family Medicine at Case Western Reserve University/University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center. Dr. Hashimoto’s interests in geriatrics stemmed from his experience while he was taking care of elderly patients at busy hospital in Japan. He developed his interest in advance care planning and hopes to build a career in academic medicine along with exploring that interest through research.
Dr. Sabrina Jen was born and raised in Los Angeles. She received her B.S. in Biology from Loyola Marymount University and D.O. degree from Western University of Health Sciences/COMP. She completed her family medicine residency at PIH Health - Downey. Her rotation there with Dr. Albert Bui, an alumnus of the UCLA Geriatric Medicine Fellowship, opened her eyes to the distinct approach to caring for the older adult and sparked her interest in the specialty. With a passion to improve the quality of life of our older adults, she is excited to hone her skills in geriatric medicine.
Dr. Tu Nguyen was born in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, and moved to the United States on a scholarship at the age of 15. She received her Associate degree in Nursing in Boston in 2008, and worked as a nurse for the next 6 years while completing her Bachelor’s degree in Nursing at Northeastern University. She obtained her medical degree at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. She completed her residency in internal medicine at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, CA. Her interest in geriatrics started early during her time taking care of the older, underserved, immigrant population in the capacity of a home health nurse. She is planning to pursue a career in geriatrics with a strong interest in home-based primary care.
Dr. Elaine Roh was born and raised in Southern California. She graduated from the University of Southern California with a Bachelor's degree in Human Development and Aging and Biological Sciences. She then received her medical degree from the University of California, Riverside and completed her residency in family medicine at the Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center. She has been interested in working in the geriatric field since her undergraduate studies and her passion grew as she took part in the geriatric track during residency, where she had a diverse experience of older adult care. She hopes to continue strengthening her training in caring for older adults in various medical settings and teaching medical trainees.
Dr. Patra Sorod was born and raised in Cerritos, California. She graduated from University of California, Riverside with a Bachelor’s Degree in Biochemistry and completed medical school at the College of Osteopathic Medicine, Western University of Health Sciences in Pomona, California. With interest in preventive medicine, she pursued her residency in Family Medicine at PIH Health Hospital in Downey, California where she also served as Chief Resident. Having considerable and pleasant experiences in individualized well-rounded care for the elderly, particularly during her geriatric’s rotation, advanced her interest within this field. She looks forward to further enhancing the skills to excel in providing holistic well-being for the growing geriatrics community.
Dr. Sarah Samandary was born and raised in West Los Angeles. She obtained her Bachelor’s degree in Microbiology, Immunology and Molecular Genetics from UCLA. Then suffered through four long snowy winters in Illinois to earn her M.D. from Chicago Medical School. Sarah returned to sunny southern California to complete her residency in Internal Medicine at St. Mary Medical Center in Long Beach. Her patient encounters fueled a passion to advocate for the wellbeing and dignity of her elderly patients nearing end of life. Sarah returned to West Los Angeles to participate in the UCLA Combined Geriatric Medicine-Palliative Care Fellowship program.