A culture that promotes diversity, inclusion, and respect for others is essential for inspired learning, academic excellence, and optimal patient care. Our program has been formally recognized and awarded by Harvard Medical School for our residency-wide efforts in recruiting and promoting under-represented minorities, and we take great pride in our long, pioneering history of female departmental leadership.
Despite an increasing awareness of the value of diversity for health care institutions, barriers still exist for women, people of color, and other underrepresented groups. As such, we are committed to the goal of building a diverse and inclusive residency program and promoting diversity within the hospital community. Residents with a specific interest in this important issue may participate in our Diversity and Inclusion Certificate Program to provide a framework for the development of knowledge and skills specific to promoting diversity and inclusion as it pertains to neurology trainees.
To explore more about diversity within our parent institutions, please explore the following online resources:
New Lecture Series
Dr. Jillian Berkman, PGY-3 has designed and implemented a Health Equity Curriculum that started in August 2020, alongside Dr. Altaf Saadi. This is a monthly lecture series ensuring MGB Neurology Residents graduate with a solid foundation for combatting health disparities in their futures.
- Introduction to Health Equity
Lecturer: Dr. Altaf Saadi
- Unconscious Bias Training
Lecturer: Dr. Sherri Ann Burnett-Bowie
- Healthcare Disparities Among Patients with Disabilities
Lecturer: Dr. Lisa Iezzoni
- Disparities in Neurology
Lecturer: Dr. Nicte Mejia
- Culturally Competent End of Life Care
Lecturer: Dr. Kate Brizzi and Sarah Byrne Martelli
- Racism in Medicine
Lecturer: Dr. Jonathan Jackson
- Physicians as Advocates
Lecturers: Dr. David Himmelstein and Dr. Steffie Woolhander
- LGBTQ Health in Neurology
Lecturers: Dr. Nicole Rosendale
- Care of Immigrant Population and Interpreter Use
Lecturers: Chris Kirwin and Aswita Tan-McGrory
- Disparity in Stroke Neurology
Lecturers: Dr. Lesli Skolarus
- Health Disparity and COVID-19
Lecturers: Dr. Joseph Betancourt
Neurology Grand Rounds
September 9, 2020
Advancing Equity in Neurology
Nicte Mejia, MD, MPH
Assistant Professor of Neurology at Harvard Medical School;
Director of MGH Neurology Community Health, Diversity and Inclusion;
Director of MGH Departmental Community Health Improvement
Nicte Itzel Mejia, M.D. M.P.H. FAAN is Assistant Professor of Neurology at Harvard Medical School and Director of MGH Neurology Community Health, Diversity and Inclusion. Dr. Mejia’s clinical interests and expertise focus on improving access to neurology care while advancing equity. She has created mechanisms for trainees to engage in these efforts, including the Harvard Neurology Residency Program Diversity and Inclusion Certificate (co-led with BWH Neurology), MGH Neurology Community Health Diversity and Inclusion Internship (for undergraduate and graduate students), MGH Youth Stroke Education Program (for high school students), and MGH Neurology Research and Education Program (for high school and undergraduate students). Under her leadership, MGH Neurology has also established the annual Anne B. Young Diversity Scholar Award to recognize people working to advance equity, diversity and inclusion.
Dr. Mejia serves as: member of the MGH Executive Committee on Community Health, MGH Equity Leadership Council, and HMS Health Equity Education Working Group; Faculty Director of the HMS ME518 Intensive Medical Spanish Course; Board of Directors Member at the Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program; and inaugural Equity Diversity and Inclusion Editor at the journal Neurology. Support for her work comes from the American Academy of Neurology, Biogen Foundation, National Institutes of Health, National Parkinson Foundation in partnership with PCORI, and Rappaport Foundation. She completed the MGH/MGPO Physician Leadership Development Program, MGH Disparities Solutions Center Disparities Leadership Program, YW Boston LeadBoston Executive Leadership Program, The Partnership Inc. BioDiversity Fellowship Program, and American Academy of Neurology Diversity Leadership Program. Dr. Mejia has been honored with the MGH Ernesto Gonzalez Award, HMS Harold Amos Faculty Diversity Award, HMS Scholars in Medicine Excellence in Student Mentoring Award, YMCA Achievers Award, Dominican Medical College New England Boston Chapter and Hispanic Health Professionals Association Outstanding Healthcare Professional Award, as well as the American Academy of Neurology AB Baker Teacher Recognition Award.
Neurology Grand Rounds
September 2, 2020
Microaggressions and Overcoming Prejudices in the Workplace
Ranna Parekh, MD, MPH
Chief, Diversity and Inclusion Officer, American College of Cardiology
Ranna Parekh, M.D., M.P.H. joined the American College of Cardiology in July, 2019 as the inaugural Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer. Previously, Dr. Parekh was at the American Psychiatric Association for almost five years as a Deputy Medical Director and the Director of the Division of Diversity and Health Equity. In this latter role, she was also Director of the American Psychiatric Association/ American Psychiatric Association\ Foundation’s (APA/APAF) 8 fellowship programs and 5 medical student grants including the Minority Fellowship Program. Dr. Parekh is a child, adolescent and adult psychiatrist. Previous to joining APA, she practiced at the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH)and McLean Hospital/ Harvard Medical School and was the inaugural Director of the MGH Department of Psychiatry’s Center for Diversity.
Dr. Parekh is co-author of the e-book Overcoming Prejudice in the Workplace (Harvard Health Publishers, 2012). She is also editor of the Massachusetts General Hospital Textbook on Diversity and Cultural Sensitivity (Springer Publishers, 2013) and co-editor of Cultural Sensitivity in Child and Adolescent Mental Health (MGH Academy Press, 2016) and Stigma and Prejudice: Touchstones in Understanding Diversity ( Springer Publishers, 2016)
Dr. Parekh has led trainings and lectured locally, nationally and internationally on topics including diversity, health care disparities, microaggressions, cultural psychiatry, mediation, collaborative negotiations, child and adolescent psychiatry, addictions and psychopharmacology. She has lived, studied, and worked around the world including Japan, France, Poland, New Zealand and Australia. Dr. Parekh is a graduate of the Harvard School of Public Health (MPH), the adult psychiatry and child fellowship residency trainings programs at Massachusetts General Hospital and McLean Hospital/Harvard Medical School, and also holds degrees from Wayne State University (MD, BSc in Biology, BA in Chemistry and co-major in Black Studies). Currently, Dr. Parekh holds academic appointments at the Massachusetts General Hospital, George Washington University Medical School and Morehouse School of Medicine.
Neurology Grand Rounds
July 30, 2020
Miles to Go Before We Sleep
Alyx B. Porter Umphrey, MD, FAAN
Consultant (Joint Appointment), Division of Hematology/Oncology, Department of Internal Medicine, Mayo Clinic;
Consultant, Department of Neurology, Mayo Clinic;
Consultant, Department of Neurologic Surgery, Mayo Clinic;
Associate Professor of Neurology, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science
Since her arrival in 2008, Dr. Porter has worked diligently to provide care for patients with tumors and cancers involving the nervous system in addition to patients who have neurologic complications resulting from their systemic cancers. Dr. Porter received her undergraduate education at Spelman College and went on to receive her medical degree at Tempe University School of Medicine in 2003. She completed her internship at Mayo Clinic in Rochester in Internal Medicine, residency in Neurology, and Fellowship in Neuro-Oncology in 2008.
Dr. Porter serves as the co-chair of CNS disease group for the Mayo Clinic Enterprise Cancer Center, and is the Vice Chair of the Diversity and Inclusion subcommittee at Mayo Arizona. She is the medical director of the Undergraduate Plummer Scholars Program, an early undergraduate medical pathway programs for Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine and Science and enjoys teaching Cultural Humility and Cross Cultural Communication in the Mayo Clinic, Alix School of Medicine, Arizona Campus.
Dr. Porter's research interests are aimed at ensuring that patients with brain cancers have the best quality of life as possible. She is the primary investigator on the defining study for the utility of psychostimulants to improve quality of life as well as thinking and memory in patients with glioblastoma multiforme, the most aggressive form of brain cancer. Dr. Porter is also co-author of the book, Navigating Life with a Brain Tumor, a resource for patients and families.
Recently Dr. Porter and her husband, Dr. Gregory Umphrey awarded $100,000 in scholarships to medical students through their national non-profit, ElevateMeD, founded in 2019. ElevateMeD is committed to elevating the field of medicine by providing financial support, mentorship and leadership training to future physicians from racial and ethnic backgrounds underrepresented in medicine. Dr. Porter was the 2020 recipient of the Dean’s Award for Diversity and Inclusion for the Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine.
Building on the foundation of the NM1 year, the NM2 (PGY3) year is a year of exploration.Having developed keen clinical instincts, residents are equipped to staff the consultation services. They continue to grow as neurologists by supervising and mentoring their NM1 colleagues. In addition, residents enjoy dedicated exposure to EEG and EMG, child neurology, and more outpatient neurologic subspecialties. This year includes substantial elective time (approximately 12 weeks) that is used to dig deeper in specific clinical fields and further develop academic research interests. The introspection and exploration that occur in the NM2 year, under the guidance and mentorship of the program directors, house leaders, and other faculty, culminates in decisions about one’s clinical focus and career goals.
NM2 (PGY-3) Rotations
BWH ICU Senior Resident
The BWH neurology ICU senior resident assists in the care of critically ill neurology patients. The team includes a junior (NM1) resident, the NM2 senior resident, a stroke/ICU fellow, and the neurocritical care attending. There is no call responsibility, but the NM2 resident rounds on the ICU patients every other weekend.
Pediatrics/Children’s Hospital: Residents spend one month rotating through pediatric neurology at Boston Children’s Hospital. This includes exposure to both their epilepsy and general neurology inpatient services. There is q4 call during this rotation.
Residents have 10 weeks of elective for self-directed study, research, or clinical activity. Many residents take these opportunities for longitudinal research projects,international neurology training, or clinical training in areas of particular interest. There are no call responsibilities during elective blocks in order to maximize the educational, research, and academic goals of the elective experience.
One block of self-directed study, research, or clinical activity while on backup sick call for the residency. Many residents take these opportunities for longitudinal research projects, or clinical training in areas of particular interest.
The MAS service is the BWH consult service named for Martin A. Samuels, the Chair of the BWH Neurology Department. The NM2 is responsible for all inpatient neurology consults, and helps direct the consult team (which typically includes medical students and residents rotating from psychiatry and medicine). There are three NM2 residents on this rotation at any given time, with one resident on from 7:30am-7:00pm, one resident overnight 7pm-7am, and one resident off. At night, the overnight NM2 resident is the senior in house for the BWH and oversees new consults and the residents on the ward services.
MGH Consult Senior
With the attending neurologist, the NM2 resident is responsible for evaluating all non-stroke or ICU consultations from inpatient services at the MGH. Often, the consult team includes medical students and rotating medicine residents, who are all under the supervision of the NM2 resident.
MGH Stroke Consult
The NM2 stroke consult senior takes all stroke and ICU consults from MGH. This senior resident is responsible for supervising the stroke consult team, which may also include rotating medical students and medicine residents. Call is every Friday night as the supervising in-house senior resident at MGH.
Residents rotate on the inpatient service and work closely with the Neuro-Oncology fellows, Nurse Practitioners, and Attendings to provide care to this patient population. Each week, the resident attends an outpatient Neuro-Oncology clinic at MGH or the Dana-Farber Institute. Call is one night per week covering both Neuro-Oncology and RDA services.
This is a unique but critical rotation spent with the neuropathology department at either BWH or MGH. During this rotation you will function as a neuropathology fellow, attending frozen histopathology sections fresh from the operating room, assisting in the neurological portion of autopsies, learning histology on neuron-pathologic cases, and preparing the joint neurology-neuropathology brain cutting conference. There is no call, but this resident provides back-up call coverage for the residency (may be called in to replace a sick resident).
Residents gain outpatient subspecialty experience across multiple cllinics including behavioral neurology, epilepsy, movement disorders, MS, neuromuscular, neuro-otology, neuro-oncology, and neuro-ophthalmology. There are no weekend duties on this block, but the resident takes one weeknight call at MGH as the supervising in-house senior resident..
This block provides an in-depth focus on neurophysiology and epilepsy management taught through hands-on tutorials in EEG interpretation at the Jamaica Plain VA Hospital. Residents will be exposed to a breadth of complex epilepsy cases in the VA Epilepsy clinic and take part in the weekly epilepsy didactic conference series. There is one night of call as the MGH Night Senior during this block.
Learn and perform EMGs and nerve conduction studies at the VA Hospital in Boston. In addition to performing EMGs, there is a weekly neuromuscular clinic featuring a wide range of common and rare neurological disorders. There are no weekend responsibilities, but the resident on this block takes call Thursday night as the supervising in-house senior resident at MGH.
Residents, students, and several faculty routinely attend morning report at BWH and MGH to join in a wide-ranging discussion about a few cases, with an emphasis on high-yield, practical teaching points. Daily at noon there is a didactic lecture or chief’s rounds with a selected patient. Two-thirds of these talks are given by faculty that are often considered some of the best clinician-educators or researchers in the field. The remainder are prepared by senior residents, who use the opportunity to research and present topics in neurology that fascinate them most. These sessions are video-conferenced between BWH and MGH, streamed online so residents on away electives can join,and recorded and cataloged for future reference. In addition to morning report and noon conferences, the remainder of the week is filled with Grand Rounds lectures and countless other optional teaching conferences in every subspecialty of neurology.
Monday - Thursday
Morning Report at both BWH and MGH
• Breakfast provided
• Clinical discussion of cases regularly moderated and attended by a diverse group of our neurology faculty
MGH Grand Rounds
Brain Cutting & Neuropathology at MGH and BWH
Monday - Friday
Residency Noon Conference: Rotating teaching conferences presented by BWH andMGH faculty, teleconferenced between the two hospitals.
- Lunch provided
- All teaching conferences without confidential patient content are cataloged and stored online so that residents can watch them on their own time
Monday - Friday 1pm
Clinic Teaching Rounds prior to PM clinic session
Extras and Subspecialty Conferences
- Quarterly book clubs
- Neuroradiology Conference
- MGH Epilepsy Surgical Case Conference
- NeuroICU/Stroke Conference
- MGH Neuromuscular Pathology Conference
- MGH/BWH Neuromuscular Medicine Lecture Series
- Multiple Sclerosis Conference
- MGH Behavioral Neurology-Neuropsychiatry Seminars
- MGH EMG Waveform Conference
- MGH Neuroradiology Conference
- Neurovascular Conference
- BWH/DFCI Brain Tumor Board
- and many more...