in the news

March 2015

Congratulations to Dr. Allison Lee, who has been elected to serve as an ABA examiner!

We have a number of ABA Examiners in the Department, ranging from Question Writers, Applied Examiners, and Oral Board Examiners – important because these individuals are role models for residents as they transition to independent practice through the ABA/ACGME process.

Allison Lee, MD has been an Assistant Professor of Anesthesiology at Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC) since October 2012. Prior to joining the faculty at CUMC, she was Assistant Professor of Anesthesiology at the University of Miami from 2004 – 2012, where she also completed her residency and fellowship in obstetric anesthesia.

At CUMC her educational focus is in teaching the use of ultrasound in obstetric anesthesia and incorporating simulation in medical education. She is a member of the Simulation Committee, and has introduced in-situ simulation into the curriculum of the obstetric anesthesia rotation. Her current research interests include the effect of anesthetic/drug responses in labor and postoperative analgesia, genetic variants on pregnancy outcomes, and the effects of maternal position during cesarean delivery on neonatal acid-base balance.

We are pleased to announce that Dr. Lee has recently been selected to serve as an examiner for the American Board of Anesthesiology’s Part 2 Examination. She is looking forward to being a part of the ABA’s transition to using OSCEs as part of the oral examination process and to bringing this knowledge back to the department to help our residents and fellows prepare for the examination.



February 2015

Happy Valentine’s Day!

The Department of Anesthesiology wishes everyone a Happy Valentine’s Day! Let’s celebrate with Valentine Cupcakes.




The Department of Anesthesiology Congratulates the 15 Best Teachers in the Anesthesiology Program for 2013/14 – results of the Resident Evaluations!

Robin Brown Teresa Mulaikal
Alan Gaffney Eugene Ornstein
John Gaudet Teeda Pinyavat
Manon Hache Jeremy Poppers
Robert Kazim Neeta Saraiya
Tatiana Kubacki Mark Weller
Robert Maniker June Zhao
Steve Mercer  

Great job well done!


January 2015

The Columbia Department of Anesthesiology Wishes all our Friends

a Happy and Prosperous New Year!!


Congratulations to Maya Hastie for her faculty grant award for online and hybrid learning!

Maya’s proposal was one of 16 funded across 14 schools of Columbia University, and one of 3 proposals from CUMC funded by the Provost’s office.  The competition for these awards was intense, and is important because it will help Columbia assess the effectiveness of innovative designs, delivery methods and learning strategies, with the goal to improving teaching and learning outcomes.

Learn more






Congratulations to the Pediatric Team for their award for excellence for their poster presentation at the NYP Health Care Symposium held in November 2014. 

The poster was entitled Pediatric Surgical Care Improvement Project: Improving Perioperative Prophylaxis and Reducing Surgical Site Infection Rates”
Lisa Saiman1,2, Natalie Neu1, Litty Varghese1, Michael Vitale1, David Roye1, Benjamin Roye1, Jennifer Crotty1, Hiroko Matsumoto1, Rozelle Corda1, Emile Bacha1, Ganga Krishnamurthy1, Neil Feldstein1, Rich Anderson1, Bill Middlesworth1, Gudrun Aspelund1, Steve Stylianos1, Robert Kazim1, Anthony Clapcich1, Amy Mesa-Jonassen1, Brian Thumm2, Diane Mangino2, Maria Messina2, Ava Brozovich1, Megan Murray1, Elizabeth Salsgiver1, and Philip L Graham1,2  (1Columbia University Medical Center, 2 NewYork-Presbyterian Hospita)

Learn more  - See the poster


ABA Part 1 Examination

 We would like to congratulate all the 2014 residency graduates on achieving a 100% pass rate on the ABA Part 1 Examination.


December 2014

Congratulations to George Gallos
A 2014 recipient of the Louis V. Gerstner, Jr. Award!  

The award is designed to support physician-scientists in their goal of bringing new treatments to patients, and will provide monetary support for three years ($225,000). Dr. Gallos' project will establish the critical role the Anoctamin channel plays in the initiation of rhythmic uterine contractions and will investigate this target as a potential treatment for preterm labor. One of 4 recipients this year, Dr. Gallos' project was selected from over 50 applications submitted by 20 departments here at CUMC.

A highlight of this year’s award ceremony during which each recipient described their motivation behind their projects involved Dr. Gallos presenting Mr. Gerstner with a token of gratitude for his considerable support of the medical sciences. That gift - an original pen and ink sketch from Dr. Gallos' 3rd year medical student rotation in obstetrics is entitled "the dance of life" - symbolizes the joy of pregnancy and demonstrates the inspiration behind Dr. Gallos work. It is pictured below.





Brian Egan Election to Virginia Apgar Academy

Congratulations to Dr. Brian Egan who was elected in October to the Virginia Apgar Academy of Medical Educators. He joins previous members, Drs. Dickstein, Sladen, Moitra, and Ludwin in membership in this esteemed group of faculty. The Academy is “dedicated to promoting, rewarding, and supporting outstanding education for…medical students, residents, fellows, and faculty. Academy [membership] represents not only recognition of excellence as an educator, but also a commitment to contributing to the educational life of our medical community.” Dr. Egan received his undergraduate training at Dartmouth College, and then earned his MD and MPH degrees from Yale University. Following residency training at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, he joined the faculty in 2004. Since his arrival he has been focused on resident education. His efforts have garnered him the Catherine Cozine teacher of the year award in 2008 and the M. Finster Attending of the year award in 2009, ’11, ’12 and ’13. In addition to direct teaching in the OR, Dr. Egan participates in the formal didactic lecture series wherein his lectures focus on capitalizing on his expertise in evidence based medicine. Since 2006, he has also been co-program director of the PGY1 year. Under the guidance of Dr. Margaret Wood, and with grant support from the Glenda Garvey Academy, Dr. Egan introduced into the intern year a required 4-week rotation on patient safety and quality improvement. Now 8 years into the rotation, output from these quality projects have consistently made important contributions to our department’s quality processes. In 2011, he also became a board member of the Interhospital Study Group, a national group of anesthesia clinician educators who founded and maintain the long-running anesthesia knowledge test (AKT) series. Since 2012, he has also been working with a group of clinician educators within the department who are interested in education research. In January of 2014 they published a review on the use of objective structured clinical exams (OSCE) in anesthesia. Throughout his tenure he has also maintained an active participation in medical student education, serving as the oral exam moderator during the 3rd year rotation as well as a frequent preceptor during the 4th year elective with 7 of his preceptees having matriculated in the program since 2007 and 2 having gone on to serve as Chief Residents.



And finally....

November 2014

Columbia at the Annual ASA Meeting in New Orleans


Congratulations to Team Columbia who participated in the Run for the Warriors!

Ryan Ivie and Caleb Ing
in Columbia T-shirts


Thank you to everyone who helped our team raise $3,340 for the ASA Run for the Warriors!  That put us in a solid 4th place for fundraising with an event total of $64,350!  Many thanks to our dedicated runners and walkers who were undeterred by the 6am start time and 77% humidity.  After the race, they enjoyed a sunrise walk along the Mississippi followed by beignets and chicory coffee at Café du Monde.  Can't beat that!

To see how fast your colleagues were, go to and click on the event.

To see Columbia’s many scholarly activities and participation at the ASA meeting please click here.


Congratulations to Robert Maniker

Dr. Maniker has received an Apgar Academy grant for his project entitled “Development and validation of an interactive web-based anatomy teaching tool to improve sonographic anatomy education.”

A novel web-based tool will be developed for learning sonoanatomy relevant to the performance of peripheral nerve blocks, that incorporates visual, active and kinesthetic learning. The tool will then be tested for its effect on educational outcomes as measured by learning efficiency (the amount of time required to acquire anatomical knowledge) and quality (long-term knowledge retention). 




Congratulations to Monica Goldklang and John Gaudet

John Gaudet

Monica Goldklang

Drs. Goldklang and Gaudet both received 2014 Irving Institute Clinical Trials Pilot Grants!

Monica’s grant application is entitled “Functional Lung Imaging in Acute Lung Injury” a project to expand her laboratory’s functional lung imaging work to an acute lung injury model. John’s grant application is entitled “Perioperative inflammation as a cause of postoperative delirium” a project to identify the role of perioperative systemic and central nervous inflammation as a mechanism for postoperative delirium.








And finally....


October 2014

Congratulations to Dr. Jennifer Danielsson

Dr. Danielsson has been selected as the First Place recipient of the 2014 Resident Research Award of the American Society of Anesthesiologists.  It will be presented to her at the Celebration of Research, at 11:45 a.m. on Monday, October 13, 2014 at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, Great Hall B, in New Orleans, LA.

Amount:   $1,000.00





Dr. Goldman hosted a reception to honor P&S Faculty on September 10th, 2014.

Congratulations to our Anesthesiology Faculty who have been promoted and honored in the year 2013-2014.

  • Endowed Professorships

    Richard Smiley, MD, PhD
    Virginia Apgar, MD Professor of Anesthesiology (in Obstetrics and Gynecology)
    At the Columbia University Medical Center

  • Promotions to Professor

    Robert A. Whittington, MD
    Professor of Anesthesiology at the Columbia University, Medical Center
  • Promotions to Associate Professor

    Danielle Ludwin, MD
    Associate Professor of Anesthesiology at the Columbia University Medical Center
  • Honors and Awards

    George Gallos, MD
    Department of Anesthesiology, 2014 Gerstner Scholar


Congratulations to our Residents!

American Board of Anesthesiology:  2014 July Basic Examination.

All our residents passed, so the Department enjoyed a 100% Pass Rate this year.  This is a brand new high stakes examination and we applaud our residents for doing so well!

September 2014

On July 10th, 2014, the Department came together for a group photograph in the Medical School Garden.  There is no question that over the last 20 years, the Department has grown in number of residents, fellows and faculty, leading the way for its pathway to success.

The Department of Anesthesiology
July 2014


Columbia at the “Society for Education in Anesthesia" Annual Spring Meeting.
May 30 – June 1st, 2014. Boston, MA.

Dr. Saundra Curry gave a talk entitled “The State of Teaching Anesthesia to Medical Students in the US Today” while Drs. Namrata Khimani, Allen Friedman and Saundra Curry co-authored an abstract about the “Utility of Electronic Teaching Aid for Medical Student Education in the OR”.  Clearly, iPads are being increasingly used as a teaching tool at CUMC!


Congratulations to Drs. Jennifer Danielsson and Minjae Kim

Dr. Danielsson received the FAER Mentored Research Training Grant for her project titled “Antagonism of the Calcium-Activated Chloride Channel TMEM16A: A Novel Target to Treat Bronchospasm”.

Mentor: Dr. Charles Emala
Amount: $175,000

Dr. Danielsson also received the 2014-2015 Stony Wold-Herbert Fund Research Grant for her project titled “Antagonism of the Calcium-Activated Chloride Channel TMEM16A Induces Functional Relaxation of Airway Smooth Muscle”.

Mentor: Dr. Charles Emala
Amount: $25,000



Dr. Kim has been awarded the 2014 IARS Mentored Research Award for his project titled “Assessing perioperative comorbidities through latent class analysis”.

Mentor: Dr. Guohua Li
Amount: $150,000






August 2014

2014–15 U.S. NEWS & WORLD REPORT: NYPH Is Ranked 6th On The Honor Roll

New York-Presbyterian is #1 in New York and #6 in the Nation!

New York-Presbyterian Hospital has once again been ranked as the leading hospital in New York and is now #6 in the nation according to the 2014 U.S. News & World Report “America’s Best Hospitals” Survey!  We are delighted that for the 14th consecutive year, we have been named to the Honor Roll, rising to number #6 in the nation, up from #7 for the last two years. 

We are nationally ranked in 15 of the 16 specialties included in the Survey, and are particularly proud to have ranked among the Top 10 as follows:

  • The Top 3 in Neurology & Neurosurgery (#2); Psychiatry (#2); Cardiology & Heart Surgery (#3); Nephrology (#3); and Rheumatology (#3 for our combined program with Hospital for Special Surgery)
  • The Top 5 in Urology (#5)
  • The Top 10 in Diabetes & Endocrinology (#6); Geriatrics (#6); Gastroenterology & GI Surgery (#8); and Pulmonology (#8).


The Best Doctors And The Best Hospital

Dr. Michael Weinberger has been named BEST DOCTOR in the Pain Medicine Section by Castle Connolly for our region.

Castle Connolly conducts a peer review survey, with licensed physicians voting on line. Participating physicians are asked to nominate doctors, who in their judgment are best in their field, taking into account professional qualifications, reputation, skills in dealing with patients.  The Castle Connolly physician led research team then vets the pool.  The final list includes those whom Castle Connolly consider among the top 10% of the region’s physicians.






July 2014

IARS 2014 Annual Meeting

Columbia Anesthesiology garners two awards at the IARS 2014 Annual Meeting and International Science Symposium.  May 17th – 20th, 2014, in Montreal, Canada


Congratulations to Drs. Erin Grawe and Robert Whittington!

Erin Grawe, MD
Best of Category Award Winner for Challenging Case Reports
Dr. Grawe was selected as the Best of Category Award Winner for Challenging Case Reports. Her abstract, A Multidisciplinary Approach to a LVAD-Arrest Algorithm: A Case Report and an Institutions Response, was chosen by a peer-reviewed panel for this distinction from over 510 abstract submissions. Her extensive research on this topic was the determining factor in her abstract submission receiving this recognition.





Robert Whittington, MD      
Kosaka Award Nominee and Kosaka Award Winner
Dr. Whittington was selected as a Kosaka Award Nominee and Kosaka Award Winner. His abstract, Midazolam Increases Tau Phosphorylation In The Mouse Hippocampus, was chosen by the judges for these distinctions from over 510 abstract submissions. His extensive research on this topic was the determining factor in his abstract submission receiving this recognition.





June 2014

Columbia at the AUA


Dr. George Gallos elected to the AUA  

The Association of University Anesthesiologists was founded over 60 years ago to promote academic exchange within the specialty of anesthesiology.  Membership to the AUA occurs through a nomination process and review by current AUA members and the AUA council and is predicated upon a career with evidence of substantial scholarly activity and success in basic research, clinical research and education.  This year, George Gallos, MD was inducted as our department’s newest member to the AUA.  Dr. Gallos becomes the 18th member of our faculty to be a member of the AUA.  In addition to this honor Dr. Gallos recently received the 3 year Louis V. Gerstner Jr. Foundation Award for his research project that questions whether targeting ANO-1 channels in human uterine smooth muscle can prevent premature uterine contractions that lead to preterm labor.




Resident Travel Award

G. Tom Yocum, MD, received a resident travel award this year for his abstract entitled “Genetic Deletion of the GABAA a4 Subunit Leads to Increased Airway Resistance and Inflammation.”  In recognition of this honor Dr. Yocum was invited to present his research in an oral presentation.







Lung Session organized by Dr. Charles Emala    

The Scientific Advisory Board of the AUA, chaired by Charles Emala, MD, sponsored a mini-symposium on lung biology and repair.  The structure of this symposium was a first for the AUA in that it was sponsored by a journal, The American Journal of Physiology: Lung Cellular and Molecular Physiology, and moderated by the journal’s editor-in-chief, Sadis Matalon, PhD.  The symposium featured a keynote talk by Charles Serhan, PhD on the role of resolvins in actively repairing tissue inflammation and was followed by 3 invited talks from young physician-scientist anesthesiologists.





Margaret Wood Resident Research Award          

A new prize named in honor of Margaret Wood, MD was awarded for the first time this year, and received by Katie J. Schenning, MD, MPH, Oregon Health & Science University, Portland Oregon for her abstract entitled “Postoperative Dementia: Role of Anesthesia and APOE4”.










May 2014

Columbia Anesthesiology Co-Hosts Symposium on Anesthesia Neurotoxicity in Children

PANDA Symposium IV
On Saturday April 12, 2014, the fourth PANDA Symposium on “Anesthesia and Neurodevelopment” was held at CHONY-NYP, co-hosted by MSCHONY-NYP and the Department of Anesthesiology at CUMC. The one-day symposium program was divided into an update session on “Pre-clinical and Clinical Research” in the morning and an afternoon session on “Next Steps in Anesthetic Neurotoxicity Research”. The program participants included many of the researchers who are actively conducting research in anesthetic neurotoxicity, pediatric surgical specialists and pediatric medical subspecialists who are clinician stakeholders in this discussion, neurodevelopment researchers, an expert in participatory research and representatives from SmartTots, Autism Speaks and the FDA. In all, there were 85 attendees from 18 different academic institutions in the US and abroad. The proceedings of the symposium will appear as a supplement of Journal of Neurosurgical Anesthesiology in October.


Learn More
PANDA Symposium Program
PANDA Symposium Speaker Biographies



April 2014

Our 4 New Chief Residents are ready for July 2014!

Namrata Khimani, Angela Lee, Jacob Schaff and Robert Kong

2014 Match: Columbia Department of Anesthesiology Matches First Class Group of Residents for July 2014

We have completed another very successful resident match, once again attracting a superb group of residents from across the entire country reflecting the Department’s stature as one of the top ranked residency programs in the country.  The members of next year’s class of 26 residents are from Medical Schools in eight states including many of the best Medical Schools in the country.  Most importantly they are a group of outstanding individuals who will contribute to our academic life over the next four years. Three of this year’s class will be joining our ever enlarging group of Apgar Scholars.

Columbia University Medical Center Department of Anesthesiology