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Program Champions

Johnese Spisso

 

Johnese Spisso, MPA

President of UCLA Health, CEO of UCLA Hospital System, and Associate Vice Chancellor of Health Sciences

Johnese Spisso was appointed to the position of President of UCLA Health, CEO of UCLA Hospital System and Associate Vice Chancellor of UCLA Health Sciences on February 8, 2016. She is a nationally recognized academic healthcare leader with more than 30 years of experience, and oversees all operations of UCLA's hospitals and clinics as well as the health system's regional outreach strategy.

 


Ellen Wilson

Ellen G. Wilson, PT

Executive Director Therapy Services

Ellen graduated with a B.S. in Kinesiology in 1981 and an M.S. in Physical Therapy in 1984. She worked as a physical therapist in a variety of clinical areas including acute, outpatient, geriatrics, orthopedics, acute rehab/neuro, cardiac, burns, and skilled nursing. She has been a rehab manager for the past 23 years in a variety of settings, and is currently Executive Director of Therapy Services for the UCLA Health System, which includes rehab, respiratory therapy, and integrative Medicine programs. Ellen is a past member and president of the Physical Therapy Board of California, and continues to serve as a consultant investigating PT-related complaints state-wide.

 


Medical Director

Elizabeth Ko, MD

Elizabeth Ko, MD

 

Elizabeth Ko, MD is an Assistant Clinical Professor of Medicine of the David Geffen School of Medicine.  She received a Bachelor's degree in Physiological Science from UCLA and a medical degree from the University of Miami.  She completed her Internal Medicine residency and Chief residency, with a focus on primary care, at Brown University.  Dr. Ko completed a fellowship in Integrative Medicine at the University of Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine, yoga teacher training at Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health as well as the Medical Acupuncture for Physicians course through the Helms Medical Institute. An avid home cook, Dr. Ko spent one year cooking in Los Angeles restaurants including Spago Beverly Hills and A.O.C. She is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Integrative Medicine and is a Fellow of the American College of Physicians. Dr. Ko sees patients for preventive care and chronic disease management, blending traditional medical approaches with integrative methods including nutrition, stress management and acupuncture.

 


Administrative Director

Erin and Finn

Erin Rice

Erin spent the first 14 years of her career in the finance industry, bringing electronic trading to the forefront in New York. Ten years ago, Erin moved to Los Angeles, where she rescued her dog Finn and began volunteering for UCLA Health People-Animal Connection (PAC). In 2012, Erin became the program's director, and under her leadership, PAC has been recognized by Red Cross and the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors for its impactful work. Erin is committed to non-pharmacologic approaches to symptom management, including animal-assisted therapy, and she is excited to take her next step at UCLA Health as administrative director of integrative medicine. Erin will coordinate UCLA Health's integrative medicine programs, helping to establish a united and comprehensive array of integrative medicine offerings, particularly in the clinical, educational, research and policy domains.

 


Pillar Leads

Clinical Pillar Lead - Elizabeth Ko, MD

See bio and photo above >

 


Rashmi S. Mullur, MD

Education Pillar Lead - Rashmi Mullur, MD

 

Dr. Mullur has been an endocrinologist with UCLA for three years. Dr. Mullur received her medical degree from University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center. She completed her internal medicine residency and chief residency at Barnes-Jewish Hospital/Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. Dr. Mullur then completed a fellowship in Endocrinology at the VA-Cedars Sinai Medical Center. She is a board certified by the American Board of Integrative Medicine and holds a 200 hour yoga certification and is registered with the international alliance for yoga therapists (IAYT). In addition to her clinical work, Dr. Mullur is part of the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA curricular faculty and chairs a course in endocrinology for first year medical students.

As the education director of the UCLA Health Integrative Medicine Collaborative, Dr. Mullur will work with senior leadership and the medical director to coordinate educational efforts in integrative medicine across the campus. Her expertise in medical education and integrative medicine will be integral to developing our program with academic rigor.

 


Helen Lavretsky, MD, MS

Research Pillar Lead - Helen Lavretsky, MD

 

Dr. Helen Lavretsky is a Professor In-Residence in the Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences at UCLA and a geriatric psychiatrist with federally funded research programs in geriatric depression and in translational neuroscience of integrative medicine (NIMH and NCCIH) that use mind-body interventions. She is a recipient of the Career Development awards from the NIMH and NCCIH and other prestigious research awards. Her current research studies include investigations of novel treatments of geriatric depression, mild cognitive impairment and the use of Tai Chi and yoga and meditation for treatment and prevention of late-life mood and cognitive disorders. She is the Semel Scholar in Integrative Mental Health and the Director of the Late-life mood, stress and wellness and the Integrative Mental Health programs.