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Durham Center of Innovation to ADAPT

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Current Fellows

Veterans Affairs Quality Scholars Fellows:

Christina Cui, MD – (VAQS 2023-2025)

Dr. Cui is currently an integrated vascular surgery resident at Duke University, completing the VA Quality Scholars Advanced Fellowship 2023-2025. She completed her M.D. at the University of California, San Diego, during which she also obtained a Masters in Advanced Sciences in clinical research. Her current research interests include health economics, health disparities, and interdisciplinary care. 


Samantha Meckes, MFT, MS, PhD – (VAQS 2023-2025)

Dr. Meckes is a clinical psychologist and researcher and a postdoctoral fellow with the VA Quality Scholars program. She earned her PhD from the University of Nevada, Reno where she was a James K. and Lois Merritt Mikawa Graduate Research Fellow. She completed her residency at the Durham VAMC. Her research interests have drawn from social and clinical psychology, particularly in the areas of intergroup relations, empathy, and anxiety, and augmentation of exposure-based interventions. As a VAQS fellow, she hopes to learn how to harness advanced data science approaches to study social determinants of healthcare outcomes, particularly psychological and functional outcomes associated with trauma exposure and substance use. Sam is also a retired D-1 goalkeeper and likes to relive her glory days playing rec league sports in her free time.

Jessica Coleman, PhD – (VAQS 2023-2025)

Dr. Coleman completed her PhD in Clinical Psychology at Duke University. She completed her predoctoral clinical internship in Reproductive Psychology at University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill School of Medicine. Her clinical expertise is in mental health in the context of reproductive transitions and concerns, mindfulness and acceptance interventions, and treating trauma and stressor-related disorders. Her research interests are in 1) improving access to and quality of sexual and reproductive health care services, and 2) developing and implementing trauma-informed and gender-sensitive practices and interventions to address sequalae of interpersonal violence, discrimination and medical trauma.

Health Services Research Fellows (sponsored by the Office of Academic Affairs):

Catherine Sims, MD – (OAA 2022-2025)

Dr. Sims is a rheumatologist at Duke University working under the mentorship of reproductive rheumatologist Dr. Megan Clowse. Her research initiatives include quantitative and qualitative pregnancy outcomes in systemic vasculitides, creation of a pregnancy planning scoring system for women with systemic lupus erythematosus, and the utility of serum biomarkers to differentiate between preeclampsia and episodes of lupus nephritis during pregnancy. Working closely with national advocacy groups and patient representatives she has created patient centered, easily accessible information detailing the importance of birth control, intentional pregnancy, and family planning for people with vasculitis. Through novel research efforts, education of providers, and streamlined communication with patients her hope is to improve the reproductive experience for women with autoimmune diseases.

Zoe Bridges-Curry, PhD – (OAA 2023-2025)

Dr. Bridges-Curry completed a PhD in Clinical Psychology at the University of Louisville and her clinical internship at the John D. Dingell VA in Detroit. Before beginning graduate training in psychology, she worked as a public relations and strategic communications specialist in Washington, DC, with an emphasis on health, economic, and social policy. Dr. Bridges-Curry’s research focuses on pinpointing trauma-exposed subgroups at highest risk for mental health concerns and identifying targets for more effective intervention. She has a strong interest in quantitative methods, person-centered approaches, and expanding access to evidence-based care for all Veterans.


Joseph Neiman, MD – (OAA 2023-2025)

Dr. Neiman is an internal medicine and palliative care physician. He grew up in Reno, Nevada and completed medical school at the University of Nevada School of Medicine, an MPH at Johns Hopkins University, residency at Hackensack University Medical Center, and fellowship at Duke University. His research focuses on the intersection between palliative care and the ICU, using mixed methods to develop and study patient- and family-centered interventions to empower family caregivers and reduce post-ICU psychological trauma.

Gabriella Ponzini, PhD – (OAA 2023-2025)

Dr. Ponzini earned her PhD in Clinical Psychology from West Virginia University and completed her predoctoral internship at the Durham VA. Her expertise is in the research and treatment of anxiety disorders, obsessive compulsive and related disorders, and post-traumatic stress disorder. Dr. Ponzini has special interests in increasing the accessibility of exposure-based psychotherapies at VA, reducing stigma towards mental illness, and engaging Veterans and providers in the implementation of screening and treatment practices at VA.

National Clinician Scholars Program Fellows:

Carri Polick, PhD, BSN, RN, CEN – (NCSP 2022-2025)

Dr. Polick is a nurse scientist in the National Clinician Scholars Program (NCSP). She completed her PhD at the University of Michigan where she was a T32 predoctoral fellow.  Her clinical background is in emergency nursing. Her dissertation focused on the impacts of childhood adversity and adult stressors on Multiple Sclerosis biopsychosocial outcomes. Dr. Polick's research  interest encompass trauma-informed precision healthcare for all populations, preventative and mediating factors of adverse stressors and health outcomes, and equitable healthcare access and delivery.

Judith Vick, MD, MPH – (NCSP 2022-2025)

Dr. Judith Vick is an internal medicine physician, a health services researcher, and a fellow in the National Clinician Scholars Program at Duke. She is a graduate of Barnard College, the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, and the Johns Hopkins Osler Medical Residency. In her research, Dr. Vick is interested in healthcare processes and outcomes for older adults and their families in the inpatient setting. She is particularly focused on understanding and intervening on the frictions of healthcare to make our system more user-friendly and better able to coproduce goal-concordant care.

VA ADAPT COIN Equity Scholars:

 Jashalynn German

Jashalynn German, MD – (2022-2024)

Dr. Jashalynn German, originally from Atlanta, Georgia, completed her Internal Medicine residency at Johns Hopkins Bayview and will be completing her Endocrinology fellowship at Duke University in the summer of 2023. 
 Throughout her early career, Dr. German has shown a consistent passion for improving health outcomes. She has been involved in organizing and implementing events such as community health fairs and community / population-based research and interventions to improve outcomes among children/adolescents, the elderly and other at-risk populations.  As a physician health services researcher with an emphasis in health equity, her focus is improving access, utilization and quality of care related to endocrine diseases with the ultimate goal of being a change agent at systems levels to improve health outcomes.