New Faculty Announcement – Dr. Alexandrou

Please welcome Dr. Eirene Alexandrou as Clinical Assistant Professor in the Division of Endocrinology and Diabetes.

Dr. Alexandrou earned her BS from the University of Notre Dame in 2010.  Next, she earned her medical degree from Indiana University School of Medicine in 2014. Dr. Alexandrou completed pediatric residency training at the Medical College of Georgia 2017.  She recently completed pediatric endocrinology fellowship training at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Center.  She is board certified in Pediatrics and board eligible in pediatric endocrinology.

Dr. Alexandrou joins the Division of Endocrinology and Diabetes to expand availability in the Endocrine and Diabetes clinics, including outreach and attending on the inpatient and consultation services.

Please welcome Dr. Alexandrou to the Department, the University, and the community!

New Faculty Announcement – Dr. Ramakrishna

Please welcome Dr. Akhila Ramakrishna as Clinical Assistant Professor in the Division of Endocrinology and Diabetes.

Dr. Ramakrishna earned her MD from the Armed Forces Medical College in 2011.  Next, she completed an internship at Bangalore Medical College in 2011. Dr. Ramakrishna completed pediatric residency training at the Case Western Reserve University, Metro Health Medical Center in 2017.  She recently completed pediatric endocrinology fellowship training at May Clinic in Rochester Minnesota.  She is board certified in Pediatrics and board eligible in pediatric endocrinology.

Dr. Ramakrishna joins the Division of Endocrinology and Diabetes to expand availability in the Endocrine and Diabetes clinics, including outreach and attending on the inpatient and consultation services. Please welcome Dr. Ramakrishna to the Department, the University, and the community!

New Faculty Announcement – Dr. Mohammad Nijres

Please welcome Dr. Bassel Mohammad Nijres as Clinical Assistant Professor in the Division of Cardiology.

Dr. Mohammad Nijres received his MD from the University of Aleppo-Faculty of Medicine (Aleppo, Syria) in 2005 followed by his pediatric international residency training at Children’s Hospital-Damascus University in 2009.  Next, he completed US pediatric residency training at Woodhull Medical and Mental Health Center in 2015.  Dr. Nijres earned his Master’s degree in 2017 and completed pediatric cardiology fellowship training in 2017, both at Rush University Medical Center.  He completed clinical research and pediatric interventional cardiology fellowship at Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital in 2019 and recently completed his pediatric interventional cardiology fellowship training at Texas Children’s Hospital/Baylor College of Medicine.  He is board certified in Pediatrics and board eligible in Pediatric Cardiology.

Dr. Mohammad Nijres will perform interventional cardiology procedures, participate in the pulmonary hypertension program, attend on the pediatric cardiology inpatient and consultation service, share on-call responsibilities, including pediatric cardiology interventional call, and help to continue the development of the cardiology program. Please welcome Dr. Mohammad Nijres to the Department, the University, and the Iowa City community!

New Faculty Announcement – Dr. Khan

Please welcome Dr. Rabia Khan as Clinical Assistant Professor in the Division of Cardiology.

Dr. Khan received her MD from the University of Miami, Mill School of Medicine in 2012 followed by her pediatric residency training at Washington University/St. Louis Children’s Hospital in 2015.  Dr. Khan completed cardiology fellowship training at Northwestern/Lurie Children’s Hospital in 2019 and recently completed additional fellowship training in heart failure and transplant at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital.  She is board certified in Pediatrics and board eligible in cardiology.

Dr. Khan will staff general, heart failure, cardiomyopathy and transplant clinics.  Additionally, she will share in the coverage of the cardiology inpatient and consultation services.

Please welcome Dr. Khan to the Department, the University, and the Iowa City community!

Johnson Receives Kleiber Excellence Award

Marissa Johnson, BSN, RN, is the recipient of the 2020 Charmaine Kleiber Excellence in Pediatric Nursing Research-to-Practice.

Award BackgroundCharmaine Kleiber, PhD, RN, FAAN, began her University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics (UIHC) nursing career in 1983 as CNS II for Children’s and Women’s Services and served in the roles of Advanced Practice Nurse for Research and Senior Nurse Scientist for Research. During her career, she was also an Associate Professor at the College of Nursing from 2004 until 2012. Dr. Kleiber was an early visionary, developing and operationalizing the role of a nurse scientist at UIHC. She was a lead author of the original Iowa Model, as well as the award winning “Evidence-Based Practice in Action” book. Her research and evidence-based practice work have transformed pediatric nursing, especially in the area of non-pharmacological pain management for children.  Upon retiring from UIHC, Dr. Kleiber established a fund for excellence in pediatric nursing research. This award, given annually, will be used to support pediatric nurses involved in research and evidence-based practice.

Award Overview: The Charmaine Kleiber Excellence in Pediatric Nursing Research-to-Practice Award is given annually to a pediatric nurse who has demonstrated exceptional work in pediatric nursing research or evidence-based practice. This award may be given to an individual or team who has completed or is near completion of data collection for a research study or initiative that incorporates the use of research-based evidence for the benefit of children and their families. The award of $1,000, can be used to support education of the recipient or project costs and dissemination.   

The award presentation will be held on Monday, August 3, 2020 at 1130 via Zoom.

Program Overview:

  • Introductions and Program Overview: Kirsten Hanrahan, DNP, ARNP, CPNP-PC, FAAN, Director of Nursing Research and Evidence-Based Practice
  • Welcome Cindy Dawson, MSN, RN, CORLN, Chief Nurse Executive and Associate Director, UI Hospitals and Clinics
  • Award and Recipient: Jody Kurtt, MA, RN, NEA-BC, CPNP, Director, Nursing Services, Children’s and Women’s Services
  • Description of Project: Marissa Johnson, BSN, RN, Staff Nurse, Children’s and Women’s Services
  • Comments: Charmaine Kleiber, PhD, RN, FAAN, Award Honoree and Angel
  • Closing: Kirsten Hanrahan, DNP, ARNP, CPNP-PC, FAAN, Director of Nursing Research and Evidence-Based Practice

Monetary Donations Accepted for Diversity Books

The Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee has assembled a list of books recommended to read to children, which address questions on diversity, equity and inclusion.

Our Department’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee has assembled a list of books recommended to read to children, which address questions on diversity, equity and inclusion.  It has been suggested that copies of as many of the books as possible, be placed in each of the hospital libraries.  Faculty and staff have expressed the desire to donate toward the purchase of books and support of this Committee and a fund has been set up specifically for those donations.  The fund will remain open for future purchase of books and activities approved by the Department Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee.

Please find here the list of books to be purchased for this initiative.

To contribute, go to the Center for Advancement Donation Site.To search for the fund, enter “The Department of Pediatrics Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Fund”.

Pictured: Dr. Goins-Fernandez, a psychologist in Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics, poses with the first batch of diversity books purchased. Each book will be stamped indicating they were purchased from funds given by the faculty and staff of the Stead Family Department of Pediatrics.

New Faculty Announcement – Dr. Pinnaro

Please welcome Dr. Catherina Pinnaro as Assistant Professor in the Division of Endocrinology and Diabetes.

Dr. Pinnaro earned her BS from the University of Notre Dame in 2008.  Next, she earned her medical degree from New York Medical College in 2013. While a medical student, she spent 1 Doris Duke year working in the Dr. Jeff Murray lab at University of Iowa Department of Pediatrics.  Dr. Pinnaro completed an Advance Certificate in Clinical Bioethics at Loyola University Stritch School of Medicine in 2015.  She continued her medical education at the University of Iowa, completing her pediatric residency training in 2016 including, a Chief Resident year. She recently completed endocrinology fellowship training and physician scientist training pathway (PSTP) at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics.  In addition, she is completing a masters program in translational biomedicine.   She is board certified in Pediatrics and board eligible in Pediatric Endocrinology. 

Dr. Pinnaro joins the Division of Endocrinology and Diabetes to expand availability in the Endocrine and Diabetes clinics and attend on the inpatient and consultation services. Additionally, she will continue and expand her ongoing human genetics research program focused on discovering genetic modifiers of disease phenotype in 22q deletion syndrome, Turner syndrome, pediatric diabetes, and other endocrine related conditions.

Please welcome Dr. Pinnaro to her new role in the Department!

Norris Named Permanent Division Director of Endocrinology and Diabetes

I’m happy to announce Dr. Andrew Norris as the permanent Division Director of the Division of Endocrinology and Diabetes beginning July 1, 2020. He had been interim Division Director since July 2019.

Dr. Norris received his MD and PhD in Molecular Biophysics from Washington University School of Medicine in 1997. He completed his Pediatric internship and residency from 1997‐2000 at the University of Iowa, followed by his Pediatric Endocrinology fellowship from 2000‐2003 at Children’s Hospital Boston. From 2003‐2005 he was an Instructor in Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School, before starting at the University of Iowa in 2005. He has been Professor of Pediatrics and of Biochemistry since 2018.

Aside from being an active clinician, an excellent teacher and mentor, Dr. Norris has been a productive investigator that has focused in the study of the root causes of cystic fibrosis‐related diabetes, early life programming of type 2 diabetes risk, fatty acid metabolism and insulin action, and the bioinformatic study of common metabolic diseases. He has published extensively and has received numerous R01 awards through the NIH and remains a prolific scholar. Dr. Norris is also Associate Director of the Fraternity of Eagles Diabetes Research Center at the University of Iowa.

Please join me in welcoming Dr. Norris to his permanent role within the Department.

–Eva Tsalikian, MD Professor and Interim Chair, Stead Family Department of Pediatrics

New Faculty Announcement – Dr. Alhamoud

Please welcome Dr. Issa Alhamoud as Clinical Assistant Professor in the Division of Nephrology, Dialysis and Transplantation.

Dr. Alhamoud received his MD degree from Faculty of Medicine, University of Aleppo, Syria in 2006.  Next, he completed international residency training at Children’s Hospital, University of Damascus, Syria.  Dr. Alhamoud completed US fellowship training in pediatric nephrology at the University of Texas, Southwestern Medical Center in 2018. Subsequently, he completed pediatrics residency (PGY1) at Metro Health Medical Center-CWRU in 2019 and just completed pediatric residency training (PGY3) at Westchester Medical Center/Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital.  He is board eligible in Pediatrics.

Dr. Alhamoud will fill a critical deficiency in our renal transplant group.  Dr. Alhamoud will attend on the inpatient and consultation services and will also be utilized to expand the pediatric nephrology outpatient services in the community.  

Please welcome Dr. Alhamoud to the Department, the University, and the Iowa City community!

New Faculty Announcement – Dr. Wong

Please welcome Dr. Samuel Wong as Clinical Assistant Professor in the Division of Neonatology.

Dr. Wong earned his BS from Carleton College in 2004.  Next, he earned his osteopathic degree from Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine in 2011.  Dr. Wong completed pediatric residency training in 2014 at the University of Minnesota School of Medicine and completed neonatology fellowship training at Indiana University School of Medicine in 2017.  Subsequently, he completed his MS in Clinical Research at Indiana University Clinical and Translation Science Institute in 2017.   He is board certified in pediatrics and sub-boarded in Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine.   Dr. Wong was most recently a Clinical Neonatologist at Northwest Permanente and an Affiliated Professor of Clinical Pediatrics, Division of Neonatology, Indiana University School of Medicine from 2018-2020.

Dr. Wong will provide inpatient services divided among NICU Bays 1, 2/3 and level 6.  Dr Wong will contribute to academic aspects of the Neonatal Transport Service. His area of academic focus relates to large datasets and artificial intelligence.

Please welcome Dr. Wong to the Department, the University, and the Iowa City community!