AMA Journal of Ethics®

Illuminating the art of medicine

Journal of Ethics Header

AMA Journal of Ethics®

Illuminating the art of medicine

Virtual Mentor. January 2009, Volume 11, Number 1: 96-98.


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About the Contributors

Theme issue: Medical Care for Homeless Individuals

Theme Issue Editor

Kathleen M. Patchan is a second-year medical student at the University of Maryland in Baltimore. Prior to medical school, she worked for 5 years in health policy at the Congressional Research Service and the Institute of Medicine and for 2 years at Christ House, a medical shelter for the homeless of Washington, D.C. She intends to work with underserved populations, focusing on infectious disease or internal medicine.


Patrick Aquino, MD, is a fourth-year resident at the University of Maryland/Sheppard Pratt Psychiatry Residency Program in Baltimore. He is the chief resident of consultation-liaison and emergency services at the University of Maryland Medical Center. Dr. Aquino lectures to medical students on anxiety and somatoform disorders and has received an AADPRT/George Ginsberg Fellowship for his role in medical student and resident education. He is planning on completing a fellowship in psychosomatic medicine.

Carolyn Bramante is a second-year medical student at the University of Minnesota School of Medicine in Minneapolis.

David Buchanan, MD, MS, is an assistant professor of medicine at Northwestern University in Chicago, and the chief medical officer at the Erie Family Health Center.

David S. Buck, MD, MPH, is an associate professor in the Department of Family & Community Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston. He is the founder and president of Healthcare for the Homeless—Houston.

Marilyn Cornell, MS, MSW, is a clinical director for Veterans Village of San Diego and serves as adjunct faculty at San Diego State University, teaching courses in counseling and psychology. She has been a licensed marriage and family therapist for nearly 20 years, providing outpatient treatment to veterans and their families. She has also been a volunteer at Stand Down in San Diego for 20 years and serves as the organization's tent leader coordinator.

Neal Dickert, MD, PhD, is a fellow in cardiology at the Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta. He received his MD and PhD degrees from the Johns Hopkins University Schools of Medicine and Public Health, where he completed residency training in internal medicine. His interests focus on ethical issues in clinical research, particularly the use of incentives to participants in clinical research and the conduct of research in emergency settings and developing countries.

James Dunford, MD, is a professor of clinical medicine and surgery in the Department of Emergency Medicine at the University of California San Diego (UCSD) Medical Center and the medical director for the city of San Diego. He received his medical degree from Columbia University College of Physicians & Surgeons, is board certified in emergency medicine and internal medicine, served as the medical director of San Diego Life Flight, and founded the UCSD Emergency Medicine Residency Training Program. Dr. Dunford’s interests include translating scientific advances in cardiovascular disease and trauma to the community. He received the Pursuit of Solutions Research Award from the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness in 2007.

Ann Hackman, MD, is an associate professor in psychiatry at the University of Maryland in Baltimore. Most of her clinical time is spent with the Assertive Community Treatment team. She is also involved in resident and medical student education and has participated in health-services research on serious and persistent mental illness.

David A. Iverson, MD, is a psychiatrist and director of the outpatient mental health services for the Denver VA Medical Center and the Eastern Colorado Health Care System. His interests are veterans affairs, homelessness, mental health law, forensics, and ethics.

Sharad Jain, MD, is an associate professor of clinical medicine at the University of California, San Francisco, and is director of the UCSF/SFGH Primary Care Medicine Residency Program.

Jeffrey Kahntroff is a second-year law student at the University of Maryland School of Law in Baltimore, and a staff editor for the Journal of Health Care Law & Policy. He is interested in mental health law research and general health law.

Benjamin T. King is a candidate for a master’s degree in public health at the University of Texas School of Public Health in Houston, and works at the University Medical Center at Brackenridge Emergency Department in Austin, Texas.

James O’Connell, MD, is president of Boston HealthCare for the Homeless, a physician in the Departments of Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital and Boston Medical School, and a clinical instructor of medicine at Harvard Medical School.

Paul Smits, MSW, is associate chief consultant, Homeless and Residential Treatment Programs in the VA central office in Washington D.C. He manages the day-to-day operations of the Veterans Health Administration’s (VHA) Grant and Per Diem Program, the HUD-VA Supported Housing Program, the Domiciliary Care for Homeless Veterans Program, the Healthcare for Re-entry Program (prison outreach), and VHA’s homeless outreach services. He has a master of social work degree from Western Michigan University, is a veteran of the Vietnam War, and was awarded the Bronze Star in 1970. Throughout his 36-year career in the Department of Veterans Affairs, Mr. Smits has been involved in the development of the VA’s homeless program. In 2003, he was awarded the prestigious Olin Teague Award for achieving outstanding results in the rehabilitation of homeless veterans.

John Song, MD, MPH, MAT, is an assistant professor in the Center for Bioethics and the Department of Medicine at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis. He completed a fellowship in general internal medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and the Greenwall Fellowship in ethics and public policy at Johns Hopkins and Georgetown Universities. Dr. Song’s research interests include bioethics education, homeless people and other underserved populations, end-of-life care, and medical professionalism.

Benjamin Springgate, MD, MPH, is the executive director of community health for the Tulane School of Medicine Section of General Internal Medicine and Geriatrics and co-chair and president of REACH NOLA, a community-academic partnership dedicated to improving community health and access to quality health care in Greater New Orleans. Dr. Springgate serves as health liaison for the RAND Corporation in the Gulf States. His interests include community-based participatory research and improving access and quality of mental health care through community-wide quality-improvement programs.

Curren Warf, MD, MSEd, is a specialist in adolescent medicine in the Division of Adolescent Medicine, Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, and the medical director of the High Risk Youth Program, which coordinates medical and mental health care for homeless youth in Hollywood and surrounding communities. He is a fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Society for Adolescent Medicine. His research interests include high-risk behaviors of homeless adolescents.

Rochelle Watson is a third-year student at the University of Maryland School of Law in Baltimore, and an articles editor for the Journal of Health Care Law & Policy. Her primary research interests are poverty law and individual rights and liberties.