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Hughes Selected as LEAD Woman in Gastroenterology

June 23, 2022
by Jane E. Dee

Michelle Hughes, MD, assistant professor (digestive diseases) in the Department of Internal Medicine at Yale School of Medicine (YSM) has been selected as a member of the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy’s (ASGE) 2022 Leadership Education and Development (LEAD) Class for early career women in gastroenterology.

LEAD is a 12-month program offering female gastroenterologists an opportunity to enhance their leadership and career development skills through education, coaching and building professional networks. The purpose of the LEAD program is to provide the gastroenterologists with the knowledge and skills needed to develop the path to leadership within academic or private practice medicine.

Hughes is a gastroenterologist specializing in the practice of gastroenterology in the inpatient setting, a role that is also referred to as a GI hospitalist. She is dedicated to providing comprehensive and compassionate care of acute conditions involving the gastrointestinal system for patients admitted to the hospital. She is interested in quality improvement and clinical research on inpatient-focused and general GI issues which she incorporates into her role as medical chief of quality and safety for the Digestive Health service line. She works closely with trainees and is heavily involved in medical education at the student, resident, and fellow level.

“I am incredibly thankful for the opportunity to participate in this year’s ASGE LEAD program,” Hughes said. “It is a wonderful opportunity to advance my skills as a leader, grow professionally, and build connections with amazing women in gastroenterology all across the country.”

In December 2021, Hughes was a course director and speaker at the first international conference on the development of a gastroenterology inpatient program. “The GI Hospitalist Model: Addressing the Needs of Hospital-Based Care,” was organized at YSM under three themes: the state of inpatient GI care and the role of GI hospitalists; the benefits of GI hospitalists in clinical and non-clinical fields (education and research); and developing a GI hospitalist program. Discussions were led by Hughes and her colleagues and collaborators at YSM and from other academic institutions and private practice.

Hughes also was honored as one of 33 “Rising Stars,” in Connecticut Magazine’s 2022 “Top Doctors” issue. According to the magazine, the Rising Stars are Connecticut physicians who are too early in their careers to earn a Top Doctors designation, but who were selected for recognition based on peer nominations and acknowledgement of outstanding accomplishments and dedication to the field of medicine.

“Michelle is not only an outstanding clinician but a national leader in the new sub-subspecialty of GI hospitalist.," said Loren Laine, MD, digestive diseases chief. "We are very lucky to have her as part of our Digestive Diseases Section at Yale.”

Hughes earned her medical degree with honors from Albany Medical College in 2013. She completed her internal medicine residency at Boston Medical Center then went on to complete her gastroenterology fellowship at the University of Rochester Medical Center in Rochester, New York, in 2019.

She treats a variety of conditions including GI bleeding, inflammatory bowel diseases, evaluation and management of nutritional disorders, removal of foreign bodies, and diagnostic workup of malignancies of the GI tract. She performs the following procedures: esophagogastroduodenoscopy (a diagnostic endoscopic procedure for the upper digestive tract, also known as EGD), colonoscopy, feeding tube placement and removal, and video capsule endoscopy.

Since forming one of the nation’s first sections of hepatology and then gastroenterology over 50 years ago, Yale’s Section of Digestive Diseases has had an enduring impact on research and clinical care in gastrointestinal and liver disorders. To learn more about their work, visit Digestive Diseases.

Submitted by Jane E. Dee on June 23, 2022