Welcome to the Kaiser Oakland Internal Medicine Residency from the 2022-23 Chief Residents!
I grew up in Campbell, California. I attended college at UC Berkeley before moving across the bay to San Francisco, where I worked in HIV/AIDS research. I completed a Master’s in Global Health at UCSF before heading to UC Davis for medical school. I am so grateful to have been able to return to the Bay Area to complete my internal medicine residency at Kaiser Oakland. I love Northern California so much I never left!
I vividly remember walking away from my residency interview day thinking that Kaiser Oakland would be a wonderful place to train – and it has not been a disappointment! In my three years here, I have learned the skills to become a competent physician and provide compassionate care to a diverse patient population. I have really enjoyed training at a smaller program in a close-knit community. My co-residents have become my closest friends and biggest cheerleaders and the program faculty have become lifelong mentors. I have gone to my attendings not only for career advice, but for life advice such as how to build credit and financially survive in the Bay Area. While working in an integrated health system, I’ve been able to follow my patients from the ICU to the outpatient clinic. One of my favorite things about Kaiser Oakland is the program’s commitment to learning. In addition to daily noon conference, we have a weekly protected academic half day and clinic didactics daily. I am so excited to be staying on another year at Kaiser Oakland and to continue teaching our residents.
Outside of the hospital, you can find me going for a hike on the beautiful trails, reading, or trying out a new restaurant. I have recently found a passion for collecting house plants and gardening – I’m very proud of my little tomato plants!
Veesta Falahati, MD
The San Francisco/Bay Area has always been a placed I considered home. I moved away for my undergraduate career to a far, faraway place called UC Irvine in Southern California. I majored in biological sciences and took a few years off to complete a post-baccalaureate program. After graduation, I subsequently worked in pharmaceuticals and applied to medical school before ending up at UC Davis in Sacramento. While being away from the Bay Area was an opportunity for personal growth and development, I knew I wanted to return and give back to the community I was raised in. Kaiser Oakland was the perfect match for me. What initially piqued my interest was the location and the heterogeneity of the patient population with regards to both socioeconomic status and cultural/ethnic differences. Since I have been here, the commitment to academic excellence and unrelenting pursuit to instill the practice of evidence-based medicine is second to none. Every week, the focus and priority has always been a balance between resident wellness and providing quality resident education. My favorite part of Kaiser Oakland must be the staff, both attendings and residents, who cultivate a culture of support and camaraderie especially during difficult times. I have made lifelong friends from such an upstanding group of compassionate and giving individuals and I am lucky to be part of such a remarkable program.
During my free time, you can catch me visiting various national and state parks! Since I lived in Sacramento, I am partial to Tahoe where I first learned how to snowboard. I love trying new food. My favorite must be any type of seafood and any Asian cuisine. Luckily, I live in the Bay Area where there is never a shortage of new and old places to try. On Sundays, you can catch me cheering for the 49ers in my pajamas and during the basketball season, I will be sporting a Warriors jersey all season long. Go dubs!
Nika Carrillo, MD
What our residents are saying
A Message From Nathan Juergens, MD, IM/MPH resident class of 2020, UCSF Hospitalist Research Fellow (graduate of University of Minnesota School of Medicine)
Sometimes you feel like you know a place when you navigate to its website. The margins are comfortable. The menus are intuitive. Most of the words are spelled correctly and there aren’t too many banner advertisements for shady pharmaceuticals. Sometimes initial website impressions are enough to give you confidence that this is a residency program where you could learn to practice medicine, where you could spend your formative years as a trainee.
As a current second-year and enthusiastic member of the Kaiser Oakland Internal Medicine residency program, I can say, with a full appreciation for how great this website is, that it only skims the surface of everything the residency has to offer.
Let me guess: You’re either from the Bay Area, want to move to the Bay Area or both. What you may not realize is that, when you’re thinking about the “Bay Area,” it’s actually Oakland that you desire. The sun is close to literally always shining. There’s natural diversity of thought, people, arts, activities, food, and environment. Folks here like to have fun and like it when other people are also having fun. It’s a walkable city, a talkable city, a bike-able city, a likable city. A city full of people who enjoy working a rhyme or two into their daily routine.
The medical center where we spend most of our time reflects the community in which it stands: Abundant windows welcome natural light into a space filled with friendly staff, loyal patients, and soothing sounds from the construction site down the block. There’s a dive bar across the street, fine-dining options a few steps farther, and public transportation not far in the other direction. There are also homeless encampments if you set out through the neighboring park; we are unmistakably in the center of it all, which includes regular reminders of growing inequity and its impact on health.
Now I get to type something that many residents in other programs will never have the good fortune to honestly type: Our program takes care of us. Yes, we still work too much. Yes, we still have to pre-round and write progress notes. And, yes, unfortunately, there is no avoiding the illness and grief the meet us at work on many days. But what makes this program special is that our leadership listens when we ask for help, and they actually care about our health as much as our patients.
No matter where you end up training you are going to learn the medicine. There’s no avoiding it. The patients are going to bring it to you, they are going to ask you to know it, and they are going to make sure you don’t miss anything important. What’s essential, though, is that you find a place, like Kaiser Oakland, where you’ll be supported during your time learning from those patients, where you’ll find happiness as often as not, and— this is critical — where you’ll find a good website.
“As the proud son of two primary care physicians on the South Side of Chicago, I grew up witnessing disparities in access to care first-hand. As an undergraduate student participating in medical missions, I experienced the impact on communities when there was inconsistent access to electricity or clean water. Like many of us, I pursued medical school to make a difference in the lives of my community. While in medical school at Meharry, I met the program faculty from Kaiser Oakland at the National SNMA conference. I was drawn to the diversity of Oakland and to the mission of the residency program and have been thrilled to be a resident here. During residency, I became enamored with hematology and oncology. Our residency’s faculty were incredible mentors– I led several research projects and presented my findings at multiple conferences, including the American Society of Clinical Oncology national meeting. I am currently looking forward to starting a fellowship in Hematology-Oncology and I feel very well prepared clinically and in terms of the research skills, I have gained. During residency at Kaiser Oakland, I have also had ample time to pursue my passion for community advocacy, such as volunteering at the Word Assembly Faith & Medicine series, an initiative to empower Black men to improve their health through regular small group discussions on health-related topics. And I have remained committed to pipeline development in the form of one-on-one and group mentoring with the HELIX high school mentorship program, Target HOPE college preparatory program, and at Oakland Charter Middle school. All in all, my decision to train at Kaiser Oakland has been incredibly rewarding and I can’t wait for the next chapter to begin!
Zena Salim, class of 2021, UCSF Global Health HEAL fellow (graduate of Michigan State School of Medicine)
My passion for health equity stems from my personal experiences with my family in Kenya. During high school, I started to experience a lot of death and loss in my family. It was always due to a lack of health equity in a way that didn’t exist in the US. I always felt that if they were only here in the US, then they would probably still be here today. Even though I can’t fix that or bring them back, I can dedicate my career to preventing other people from facing similar health inequities and work on decreasing the gap. This passion brought me to medicine, and the Global Health experiences in Kenya during residency at Kaiser Oakland fueled this passion further. I also developed very meaningful mentorship relationships while at Kaiser Oakland that helped guide me to where I am. I am excited to explore a Global Health career path in more depth through the UCSF HEAL fellowship which will station me abroad in Rwanda as well as on the Navajo reservation. Residency at Kaiser Oakland has prepared me well for the challenges ahead and for exploring a career in global health!
What is Kaiser Oakland to me? It is a place where there is truly no such thing as a “dumb” question, where you are never alone, where you are allowed to be yourself and learn at your own pace, and a place where you are a valued member of the treatment team. It is a place where you serve a blue-collar population that is immensely diverse from a socioeconomic, educational, ethnic, and religious standpoint. All of these qualities in one program, located in the most wonderful part of the country make coming to Kaiser Oakland a decision I have never once regretted and never will.
|PGY1||Julia Du||California Northstate|
|PGY1||Tess Engel||UC Davis|
|PGY1||Lydia Henderson||UC Davis|
|PGY1||Soundarya Kumaravelu||UC Davis|
|PGY1||Peter Lee||California Northstate|
|PGY1||Paul Mgbam||Keck USC|
|PGY1||Malcolm Moyer||Michigan State|
|PGY1||Tracy Ngo||Albert Einstein|
|PGY1||Emily Nguyen||California Northstate|
|PGY1||Joy Njuguna||UC Davis|
|PGY1||Joel Nortey||East Carolina|
|PGY1||Edward Shin||University of Wisconsin|
|PGY1||Aaron Smith||Frank Netter- Quinnipiac|
|PGY2||Michelle Fok||University of Illinois|
|PGY2||Christopher Macko||University of Texas-San Antonio|
|PGY2||Alexandro Marquez||UC San Diego|
|PGY2||Samantha Nguyen||UC Davis|
|PGY2||Kyu Min Shim||California NorthState|
|PGY2||Nicholas Tom||UC Davis|
|PGY2||Jimmy Yao||Case Western|
|PGY2||Sherry Zhang||University of South Florida|
|PGY3||Angelin Cheng||UC Davis|
|PGY3||Polly Huang||University of Southern California|
|PGY3||Irvin Lien||Wayne State|
|PGY3||Joy Liu||Mayo Clinic|
|PGY3||Andrew Lynch||Jefferson Medical College|
|PGY3||David Oh||Tufts University|
|PGY3||Nihar Patel||UC San Diego|
|PGY3||Navneet Ramesh||Tufts University|
|PGY3||Tanya Selvam||UC Davis|
|PGY3||Jeffrey Wang||University of Arizona|
|PGY3||Timothy Yang||California Northstate|
|PGY3||Anna Zhang||University of Iowa|
|Chief Resident||Nika Carrillo||UC Davis|
|Chief Resident||Veesta Falahati||UC Davis|
Other Residents and Medical Students on Oakland Campus
Kaiser Permanente Oakland is affiliated with several medical schools including the University of California at San Francisco (UCSF), Drexel, and California Northstate University. We host medical students of all years from UCSF, including eight 3rd year UCSF students who complete their entire third year at the Oakland Kaiser Campus as part of the KLIC (Kaiser Longitudinal Integrated Clerkship) program. Third-year medical students from California Northstate complete their required third-year clerkships with us and we host approximately 60 students per year from across the country for a variety of sub-internship experiences. Our program directors, hospitalist attendings, and many of our clinic physicians hold clinical faculty appointments at UCSF. There are also other residency programs at our campus.
Other Oakland Kaiser Residencies
- Obstetrics and Gynecology
- General Surgery
- Head and Neck Surgery
- Clinical Psychology
Oakland Kaiser Fellowships
- Pumonary – Critical Care
- Addiction Medicine
- Community Medicine
- Spine Surgery Fellowship
- Pediatric Hospitalist Fellowship
*As part of the Kaiser Permanente Northern California Fellowship partnership
Other On-campus Residents/Fellows
Students, Residents, and Fellows from the following programs rotate to Oakland Medical Center:
- 4th-year Sub-Interns: Kaiser Oakland is the only non-UCSF site approved as an official site to complete the required sub-internship in IM; Drexel – Kaiser cohort complete sub-internships; numerous other med students complete away rotations in their 4th year
- 3rd Year Medical Students: UCSF’s KLIC students spend their entire 3rd year at Kaiser Oakland; California Northstate M3’s complete their core IM clerkship here;ACE-PC medical students from UC Davis rotate to Kaiser Oakland
- UCSF Palliative Care fellows
- Surgery residents from UCSF
- Ophthalmology Fellows
- 3rd Year Pediatric Clerkship for UCSF
- 3rd Year OBGYN Clerkship for UCSF
- Emergency Medicine residents from Alameda County/ Highland