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Fellow Focus in Four: Emily Gao, MD, Geriatrics

October 09, 2023

Why did you choose medicine?

Medicine combined my interest in science and my desire to have long-term relationships with people. It is a joy and honor to be able to learn someone's priorities and to find a medical plan that fits into the context of their life and strives to honor their goals.

Medicine is also a profession in which we can utilize our stories and our patients’ stories to advocate for positive changes to our field and our society.

Why did you choose Yale Department of Internal Medicine for your fellowship?

The Yale fellowship in geriatric medicine is a well-rounded program that includes home-based primary care and longitudinal follow-up, nursing home experiences, palliative care, specialized geriatrics clinics, consult services, and an inpatient Acute Care for Elders (ACE) unit. Yale is also a research giant, and it is exciting to have the opportunity to work with people who are investigating interesting questions about a range of topics, from pathophysiology of disease to new medications for Alzheimer's to the impact of social determinants of health on aging and health outcomes.

I liked the people I met on my interview day. They were responsive to my questions and willing to tailor the clinical experiences of my fellowship to my interests. Finally—and very importantly—my husband and I are from Connecticut, and we wanted to be close to family.

Perks of living in New Haven? Connecticut?

I like small- to mid-sized cities. New Haven is big enough to have everything I need in a city, but small enough so that I can get to know my neighbors. There is a good amount of green space in the city and lots of hiking nearby.

What is your career goal?

My goal is to serve medically and socially complex patients and create or improve a model of health care that addresses their needs. I’m interested in working with interdisciplinary teams and health care models that increase patients’ access to health care and address social determinants of health.

The Department of Internal Medicine’s Section of Geriatrics strives to improve the health of older adults by providing exceptional patient care, training future leaders and innovators in aging, and engaging in cutting-edge research. To learn more about their mission, visit Geriatrics.

Submitted by Serena Crawford on October 09, 2023