Our Care Team

Your breast reconstruction team at the Friedman Center includes your surgeon, a physician’s assistant or nurse practitioner, and a clinical coordinator. This team will care for you from your initial consult

Our team also works with your other providers, such as your oncologist and breast surgeon, to offer you comprehensive support. From patient advocacy to resource coordination to billing assistance, we’re here to help.ation to your final postsurgical appointment.

Physicians

Nurse Practitioner/Clinical Care Coordinator

Nurse Practitioner & Clinical Care Coordinator

Nicole is passionate about helping others and a true caregiver at heart. She works with patients across the continuum of their breast reconstruction clinical care and can help you navigate every step of the way through treatment, surgery, and follow-up care. She can also help you locate other support services that may help you and your family.

 

Nicole also offers office-based treatments to refresh facial appearance and delay the aging process, such as Botox, dermal fillers, dermaplaning, and custom medical-grade skin care. She enjoys cooking, gardening, and family time, and has completed an Ironman triathlon!

Administrative Staff

Program Director

Janet Gerlach

Janet is first and foremost a patient advocate. In her role as Program Director, she connects patients to the full complement of resources available at the Friedman Center. She is passionate about helping women feel empowered and supported on their breast reconstruction journey. Janet also coordinates the team at the Friedman Center, builds relationships with healthcare partners, and leads many of our community events.

Office Manager

Jenna Shimmons

As Administrative Manager, Jenna is responsible for facilitating daily operations, business functions, and- most importantly- patient relations at the Friedman Center. She focuses on creating a warm, professional environment for both patients and staff, and continually works to increase patient satisfaction. When she’s not at work, Jenna cherishes spending quality time with her son and family.

Physician Assistants & Nursing Staff

SENIOR PHYSICIAN ASSISTANT

Pashmena ends every patient conversation by asking, “Is there anything else I can do for you?” A member of Dr. Smith’s team since 2012, she finds caring for patients both intellectually and emotionally fulfilling. Pashmena assists with pre-operative and post-operative assessments, creating treatment plans, and coordinating care. She enjoys traveling, spending time outdoors, and being with her family.

PHYSICIAN ASSISTANT

Maria has been assisting Dr. Kasabian with preoperative and postoperative patient care since 2015. Although she finds working in the operating room very rewarding, she also loves speaking with and listening to patients and their families. Maria is the Friedman Center’s resident specialist in 3-D nipple areola tattooing for breast reconstruction. She enjoys cooking, traveling, and quality time with her family.

PHYSICIAN ASSISTANT

Katherine (Katie) has been working with Dr. Tanna since 2017, caring for patients before, during, and after surgery. She is an excellent patient resource and strives to provide patients with optimal experiences as well as excellent outcomes. Katie believes strong relationships are based on communication and makes herself available to speak with patients whenever possible. She is an avid runner and yogi.

PHYSICIAN ASSISTANT

Lena’s primary role is to help Dr. Moon during surgery, but she also conducts new patient and post-operative appointments and is an expert in reconstructive nipple tattooing. She likes having a “hint of spontaneity” at work, and she strives to increase practice efficiency and build relationships with her patients. In her free time, Lena enjoys reading books, watching films, and visiting the beach.

PHYSICIAN ASSISTANT

Kelly enjoys building relationships with her patients, from the time of initial diagnosis until their reconstruction is complete. She works to help patients feel comfortable and informed during each and every visit—whether taking them through a stressful situation or listening to their concerns. Outside of work, Kelly enjoys running, spending time with her family and her dog, and singing at her church.

REGISTERED NURSE

Joan is a registered nurse and a key member of Dr. Leipziger’s surgical team. She works with patients to ensure seamless, coordinated care from initial diagnosis to final follow-up appointments. Joan is proud to do her part in continually improving the patient experience. When not at work, Joan is spending time with her family.

PHYSICIAN ASSISTANT

Chloe assists Dr. Denis Knobel with patient surgery and postoperative care. Whether she’s providing a diagnosis or helping to build a patient treatment plan, Chloe is attentive to every patient’s needs and concerns. She loves participating in the patient care process and is constantly working to improve the patient experience. Chloe enjoys yoga and hiking in her free time.

Clinical Administrators

SURGICAL COORDINATOR

Dea is Surgical Coordinator “extraordinaire” to Dr. Kasabian, whom she has worked with since 2014. She strives to make each patient’s experience positive by providing them with personal attention from their first appointment to their last. When she’s not at work making patients’ lives a little better, she’s putting the same level of care and attention into her farm to table cooking and spending time with her family.

SURGICAL COORDINATOR

Brittany loves connecting with our patients, whether she’s posting on social media or scheduling their surgery. Her job is to facilitate all aspects of the patient journey, starting with setting up the very first appointment. With a focus on education and compassion, Brittany provides patients with an individualized and personal experience. She is a fan of yoga, the Carolina Panthers, and spicy food.

SURGICAL COORDINATOR

Valerie has been working in the Northwell Health system since 2014, and she thrives on making patients happy. While she focuses on flawless execution of her coordination tasks, she always keeps patient experience at the forefront of her mind. An on-the-go mom of two busy girls, Valerie spends her off time with her family, including getting them to piano, viola, tennis, and many other activities!

SURGICAL COORDINATOR

Joan loves being a friendly face for patients to interact with—even in person or over email! As Surgical Coordinator to Dr. Moon, she’s proud of her ability to help patients get the answers and information they need. Joan shows each patient kindness and respect to help ease the stress that can come with planning for surgery. She enjoys spending time outdoors and relaxing with her family.

SURGICAL COORDINATOR

When Marilyn comes to work each day, her primary focus is meeting patients’ needs. From confirming insurance authorizations to organizing care plans, Marilyn helps coordinate all aspects of surgical preparation. The best part of her job is supporting women through the difficult journey of breast reconstruction. Outside of work, Marilyn enjoys camping and spending time in the great outdoors.

MEDICAL SECRETARY

Donna has been working with Dr. Leipziger for over a decade. She brings a positive attitude to work each day, and she loves collaborating with her fellow teammates to provide an exceptional patient experience. From scheduling to charting, Donna handles administrative details so that the reconstruction journey can be just a bit smoother. She loves baking, photography, and needlepoint.

SURGICAL COORDINATOR

Renata welcomes patients to the Friedman Center by listening to their needs and addressing their concerns. She smooths the way for reconstruction surgery by coordinating appointments, communicating with patients, and obtaining all the necessary authorizations and clearances. Renata has lived all over the world: Warsaw, Poland; Cape Town, South Africa, London, UK, and now New York!

OFFICE MANAGER

Sandi brings over 20 years of experience in surgical coordination. She works closely with Dr. Leipziger to provide each patient with individualized attention and access to the right resources. Sandi enjoys putting all the pieces together to create a successful surgical experience. When she’s not at work, she’s spending time with her family.

SURGICAL COORDINATOR

Monica has been working with Dr. Denis Knobel since 2018. She loves helping women through the entire patient journey. Monica knows that even small acts can make a difference in a patient’s day. She helps schedule patient surgeries and appointments, coordinate external resources, and answer any questions. When she’s not at the office, Monica enjoys nature walks, cooking, and spending time with her family.

Support Staff

Every staff member at the Friedman Center is part of your Care Team, even if you never meet them! The receptionist who greets you upon arrival, the medical assistant who takes your blood pressure, the insurance coordinator busily working behind the scenes—each employee is committed to helping you have an excellent experience.

Pictured from left to right: Trisha Thompson, Elisa Uwurugo, Stephanie Kilduff, Alix Giannasco, Raywattie “Davi” Ramkumar, Emily Zapata, Stephanie Hansraj, Ashly Quizhpi, Jasmit Kaur, Latonya Stamp (Director of Clinical Administration)

Supplementary Resources

At the Friedman Center, we’re committed to helping you feel whole again. That means addressing your needs as a whole woman. We offer many resources in-house, and we partner with Northwell Health for ancillary services to help you recover physically, mentally, and emotionally.

 

The resources you have available include physical therapy, genetic counseling, mastectomy fitters, nipple tattooing, patient navigators, community support groups. We strive to meet your every need, so please let us know what else we can do to support you through your reconstruction journey.

Schedule a Consultation

Call: +1 (516) 224-2350

Fax: +1 (516) 224-2390

600 Northern Blvd, Suite 310, Great Neck, NY 11021

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