Shriners Hospitals for Children Joins AMA in Celebrating Women in Medicine

Each September, the American Medical Association (AMA) celebrates Women in Medicine Month. Shriners Hospitals for Children – Northern California has much to celebrate as it is home to a dynamic team of female physicians who have pioneered research and medical procedures that have helped elevate heath care across a broad spectrum of the medical landscape.

The 14 female physicians practicing at the Northern California Shriners Hospital include orthopaedic, burn and pediatric surgeons, a physical medicine and rehabilitation specialist, an anesthesiologist, radiologist and a pediatrician. Individually and collectively they are working to advance the lives of children through clinical practice and innovative research. They serve as physician leaders, mentors and distinguished practitioners who represent the growing number of women who have entered the field of medicine in the past 40 years.

Medical Leadership
Three female surgeons provide medical leadership at the Northern California Shriners Hospital.

Michelle James, M.D., specializes in the treatment of children’s hand and arm conditions, including malformations and neuromuscular problems. She joined the Shriners Hospital medical staff in 1991 and was appointed Chief of Orthopaedics in 2007. A noted pediatric hand surgeon, Dr. James is Deputy Editor for Hand and Upper Extremity for the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery. She serves on the Board of Directors of the American Board of Orthopedic Surgeons, The Perry Initiative, and Orthopaedics Overseas. Dr. James has published numerous papers in peer-reviewed journals and contributed chapters to surgical textbooks. She has been a principal investigator in several clinical research studies of hand function in children, including a study published in the April 2015 issue of the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery that is likely to change medical practice regarding the use of botulinum toxin (one brand of which is called botox) in upper-extremity cerebral palsy cases. The conclusions from the multi-center study show that tendon transfer surgery improves hand and arm function more than botulinum toxin injections or therapy alone. Dr. James also serves as Chief of Pediatric Orthopaedics in the Department of Pediatric Orthopaedic Surgery at the University of California Davis Health System.

Tina Palmieri, M.D., Assistant Chief of Burns, is past president of the American Burn Association and Director of the Firefighters Burn Center at the University of California, Davis, thus extending her critical care expertise to both adults and children. Dr. Palmieri is devoted to improving outcomes in those with burn injuries through critical care, research and education. She has published numerous prevention studies on topics ranging from fire imagery in toy packaging to a campfire safety campaign that was adopted by the California State Parks. Dr. Palmieri published results of a nine-year study on mortality rates for burn-injured children in the May 2015 issue of Pediatric Critical Care medicine. The study found that mortality rates are lower in high-volume pediatric burn centers, including the Northern California Shriners Hospital. Board certified by the American Board of Surgery in Surgical Critical Care and General Surgery, Dr. Palmieri is also a Fellow of the American College of Critical Care Medicine and the American College of Surgery. Her professional affiliations include the American Association for Surgery and Trauma, the Society of Critical Care Medicine, the Pacific Coast Surgical Society and the International Society for Burn Injury.

Diana L. Farmer, M.D., an internationally renowned pediatric surgeon, practices at Shriners Hospitals for Children – Northern California, where she is leading a program focused on the complex surgical needs of children. At Shriners Hospital, Dr. Farmer’s expert surgical care extends to children one-year of age and older who are faced with complex intestinal disorders, complex rectal disorders and complex chest wall and neck disorders. Dr. Farmer was inducted into the Royal College of Surgeons of England in 2010, becoming the second American woman surgeon to receive this honor. In 2011, Dr. Farmer received one of the highest honors in medicine when she was elected to membership in the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies. Dr. Farmer is a member of many professional organizations including the American Academy of Pediatrics (Section on Surgery), American College of Surgeons, American Pediatric Surgical Association, American Surgical Association, Association of Women Surgeons, International Fetal Medicine and Surgical Society, International Pediatric Endosurgery Group, and the Royal College of Surgeons of England

Orthopaedic Surgeons
While women constitute less than 10 percent of practicing orthopaedists, according to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, women in medicine are strongly represented on the orthopaedic team at the Northern California Shriners Hospital.
Jennette L. Boakes, M.D., is a pediatric orthopaedic surgeon whose practice includes congenital and acquired limb deformity, club foot and foot deformity, congenital hip dysplasia, scoliosis and fracture care as well as surgical reconstruction for these conditions.Dr. Boakes has special expertise in limb lengthening and guiding growth to correct limb deformity. Areas of research interest to Dr. Boakes include muscle strength recovery following lower extremity surgery and planning deformity correction by growth manipulation. Dr. Boakes is a Fellow of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, a member of the Pediatric Orthopedic Society of North America, and Shands Circle, Orthopaedic Research and Education Foundation. She was a member of the 2008 Team USA aquathalon team.

Lisa L. Lattanza, M.D., is a clinical consultant in the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery for Shriners Hospitals for Children — Northern California and Chief of Service in Elbow Reconstructive Surgery in the Department of Orthopedic Surgery at the University of California, San Francisco. Dr. Lattanza is Board certified by the American Board of Orthopedic Surgery with Added Qualifications for Surgery of the Hand and a Diplomate of the National Board of Medical Examiners. Her professional affiliations include the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, the American College of Sports Medicine, and the American Society for Surgery of the Hand.
Candice O. McDaniel, M.D., is a pediatric orthopaedic surgeon specializing in the treatment and care of children with skeletal trauma, clubfoot deformity, lower extremity sports injuries, and scoliosis. She is a member of the Pediatric Orthopaedic Society of North America and the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons.

Debra Templeton, M.D., focuses exclusively on pediatric orthopaedics, which includes reconstruction, scoliosis, sports, and trauma. She has served as a consultant editor for the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery and the Journal of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons. As a fellow, she received the Boone Pickens Outstanding Fellow Research Award. She was also awarded the Wyeth Resident Research Award. While in medical school, Dr. Templeton was a Member of the United States Olympic Development Track and Field Team and received the United States Olympic Committee Scholar Athlete Award. Dr. Templeton is actively involved in pediatric trauma care at UC Davis. She serves as a member of the Pediatric Multidiscipinary Trauma Committee and the Pediatric Trauma Quality Control Committee. Dr. Templeton is a Fellow of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, and a member the Pediatric Orthopedic Society of North America, for which she has served on several national committees.

Other Specialists
Other female physicians bringing their unique experience to Shriners Hospitals for Children – Northern California include a physical medicine and rehabilitation specialist, pediatric surgeon, radiologist and pediatrician.

Maya Evans, M.D., is a Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Specialist and Medical Director for the Spina Bifida program. She previously served as Medical Director of Pediatric Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin. She is Board Certified by the American Board of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation in Brain Injury Medicine, Pediatric Rehabilitation Medicine and Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. Her awards and honors include the 2011 PM&R Research Award at Rutgers – NJMS, and the Robert Boyle Teacher of the Year Award in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at the Medical College of Wisconsin. Dr. Evans has lectured on a number of topics including the Challenges of Cerebral Palsy and Caring for Brain and Spinal Cord Injuries. Her research studies include the Effect of Obesity on Acute Rehabilitation Following Spinal Cord Injury and Dysesthesias Following Ethyl Alcohol Nerve Blocks in Children.

Sandra Wootton Gorges, M.D., is Medical Director of Imaging and Radiation Safety Officer for Shriners Hospitals for Children – Northern California. She also holds positions as Assistant and Associate Professor of Radiology at the University of California Davis, School of Medicine. She holds the Department of Radiology Award for Excellence in Professionalism and Excellence in Teaching at the University of California, Davis. She also is the recipient of the Neuhauser Traveling Fellowship Award from Children’s Hospital in Boston.

Rebecca Stein-Wexler, M.D., is a pediatric radiologist who practices at the Northern California Shriners Hospital. She also holds positions as professor and Vice Chair for Education in the Department of Radiology at the University of California Davis, School of Medicine. Her professional memberships include the American Roentgen Ray Society, Radiological Society of North America and the Society of Pediatric Radiology.

Rebecca A. Stark, M.D., a pediatric surgeon, recently joined the medical team at the Northern California Shriners Hospital. She comes to Shriners Hospital from Seattle Children’s Hospital, where she completed a Pediatric Surgery Fellowship. Dr. Stark has published and presented internationally and is a candidate member of the American Pediatric Surgical Association.

Sampaguita-Inez (Sam) Tafoya, M.D., a pediatric anesthesiologist, is dedicated to excellence in patient care and passionate about resident education. While training, Dr. Tafoya was granted both the Outstanding Senior Resident Award and Housestaff Professionalism Award at UC Davis. She has lectured extensively on pediatric anesthesiology and is active in several professional organizations including the American Society of Anesthesiologists, California Society of Anesthesiologists, Society for Pediatric Anesthesia and the International Anesthesia Research Society. Dr. Tafoya serves on the hospital’s Continuing Medical Education Committee and Electronic Medical Record Committee. Her experience as a dedicated mother of two young children makes her an extremely compassionate caregiver for children having surgery.

Jennifer H. Yang, M.D., is a urologist who practices at Shriners Hospitals for Children and the University California Davis Children’s Hospital.

Fatema Lakhani Iqbal, M.D., is a musculoskeletal pediatrician devoted to making a positive impact on the health and welfare of children through pediatrics and non-operative orthopaedics. One of only a handful of non-operative pediatric orthopedists in the nation, Dr. Iqbal assesses patients for surgical readiness. She has strong clinical interests in injury prevention, preventive health, and development. Dr. Iqbal was selected by the California Healthcare Foundation to participate in a health care leadership fellowship through the University of California, San Francisco. One of only 31 clinicians selected throughout the state, Dr. Iqbal was awarded the position because of her commitment to Shriners Hospital and the patients she serves.

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Shriners Hospitals for Children is devoted to transforming the lives of children through excellence in treatment, teaching and research. Located at 2425 Stockton Boulevard in Sacramento, Shriners Hospitals for Children – Northern California provides care to children with orthopaedic conditions, spinal cord injuries, burns, cleft lip, scars from any cause and other complex surgical needs. There are no barriers to care as admission is based on age and diagnosis. Care is provided regardless of the family’s ability to pay. For further information call (916) 453-2000 or learn more here.

Media Contact: Catherine Curran | Public Relations (916) 453-2218 | ccurran@shrinenet.org

 

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