Mentor Shoutout: Dr. Erqi Liu Pollom, MD

Written by: Bradley Fong, 2021-22 Chief Scribe

Jen Hall
2021-22 COMET Fellow

Dr. Erqi Liu Pollom is both a Radiation Oncologist and an excellent mentor to one of our awesome current fellows, Jen. Dr. Pollom sees as many as 20 patients during her regular clinic which has allowed Jen to gain in-depth knowledge of a variety of different conditions and diseases related to radiation oncology. The close mentorship provided by Dr. Pollom also led to Jen receiving access to med student clerkship resources via Canvas which further acquainted her to the field of radiation oncology. In addition, Dr. Pollom has continued to provide many opportunities for Jen to work on interesting case studies that would ultimately lead to the publication of many exciting and impactful case reports.

Here is what Jen has to share about her experience so far with Dr. Pollom:
“Working with Dr. Pollom in Radiation Oncology has been one of the most enriching experiences I’ve undertaken as a premed. I’ve not only gained invaluable clinical insights, but my time in clinic and in research with Dr. Pollom has helped to further my desires to pursue Oncology in the future. It’s rare to find a mentor that is simultaneously inspiring and approachable.”

Thank you Dr. Pollom for your close mentorship, amazing guidance, and continuous support in our fellow’s path to med school!

Posted on 11/8/21

Mentor Shoutout: Dr. Josef Hannah, MD

Written by: Bryson Gomez, 2021-22 Chief Scribe

Cameron Bear
2021-22 COMET Fellow

Dr. Josef Hannah is a palliative care physician and an amazing COMET mentor. His clinical practice includes both inpatient palliative care consultation as well as ambulatory care in palliative medicine. His research and educational interests include symptom management and utilizing media to grow palliative care services and education. His compassionate care and exceptional mentorship make him a valued member of the COMET community. Dr. Hannah shows his scribes what it means to be a patient advocate and what medicine means beyond medical knowledge.

Here’s what his current scribe, Cameron Bear, has to say about working with Dr. Hannah: “It’s been an absolute pleasure to scribe for and learn from Dr. Hannah in Palliative Care! Not only is he a fantastic mentor, but Dr. Hannah is also an exceptional role model who exhibits the qualities I hope to one day implement as a physician. Through compassion, medical expertise, and collaborative approaches, Dr. Hannah provides care that inspires hope and noticeably improves the quality of life of his patients. I’m excited to continue to learn from Dr. Hannah this year!”

Thank you for all you do, Dr. Hannah!

Posted on 10/21/21

Mentor Shoutout: Dr. Amelia Sattler, MD

Written by: Elyse Gonzales, 2021-22 Chief Scribe

Dilpreet (Dil) Singh
2021-22 COMET Fellow

“Having Dr. Sattler as a mentor has allowed me to feel like I’m truly gaining as much as I can out of the COMET fellowship. When I’m with her in clinic, I’m not just her scribe–I’m her student. She goes out of her way to explain her rationale behind every medical decision, frequently finds teaching moments, and always finds time to provide thorough responses to all of my questions. I am honored to have her as my mentor."

Dil Singh works as a medical scribe for Dr. Amelia Sattler, a Stanford Family Medicine physician. Prior to joining the COMET fellowship, Dil was unsure of how he felt about a career in healthcare. Luckily, working with Dr. Sattler has provided him with clarity. “Before working with Dr. Sattler, it was difficult for me to conceptualize just how much of a difference clinicians make in their patients’ lives. However, seeing her interact with her patients in a positive way while making such a profound impact on their health and well-being has encouraged me to continue pursuing a career in medicine.”   

In addition to helping Dil solidify his future career plans, Dr. Sattler has also provided him with research opportunities. As the Integrated Behavioral Health Transformation Lead for Primary Care, Dr. Sattler is collaborating with Dr. Zein, a Stanford physician in Psychiatry, on a research project aimed at decreasing the time it takes for patients to access therapy and improving depression remission rates for primary care patients by providing them with proactive management resources. In his role as a research assistant, Dil will be working with the research team in identifying available therapy resources, coordinating with patients to improve access to care, and tracking the outcomes of these interventions. “I’m excited to begin working on this project, especially knowing that this work will help define future practice in primary care!” said Dil.  

Although we are only a few months into the fellowship year, Dil has already developed a strong bond with his mentor, Dr. Sattler. Bonds like theirs are just one of the ways that the COMET fellowship (with the help of the amazing COMET providers) supports scribes in achieving their personal and professional goals.  

Posted on 10/21/21

Mentor Shoutout: Dr. Silvia Tee, MD

Written by: Mayra Reyes, 2021-22 Chief Scribe

Audrey Li
2021-22 COMET Fellow

COMET would like to highlight one of our amazing scribes in Senior Care, Audrey Li, and her mentor, Dr. Silvia Tee. Early on in COMET, Audrey expressed her goals about wanting to learn valuable clinical skills while wanting to emotionally connect with patients. She has been getting “valuable, raw, human interactions” throughout her experience scribing in Senior Care and Express Care.


Mayra: "How has it been scribing for Senior Care for you?"

Audrey: "I feel privileged to be a scribe as part of the patient’s care team. Frankly, the past 3 months of COMET were quite a challenge for me in both practical and personal ways. First, I learned to navigate through EPIC, which was like a completely different world. Then, I have to learn new vocabulary in the clinical setting, especially the medication names that are clearly not in English. But more so, the personal challenges are the greatest because I struggled to separate the professional and emotional sides. These hurdles led to my deeper reflection after each shift about what I would do for my future patients. Dr. Tee was there for me through my ups and downs as a mentor and as a role model."

Mayra: "How is Senior Care are different from Express Care?" 

Audrey: "As continuous care, Senior Care patients are usually back for follow-up visits. Their HPIs are incredibly complex with a long medications list. The care team should also be familiar with the non-clinical side of the patients, such as home health, senior living facilities, and wheelchair accessibility. Of course, I also saw patients in Express Care. Since it is acute care, we try to limit the chief complaint to one and a maximum of two. This way, we ensure that we maintain the patients flow one after the other. Also, in this fast environment, every patient is a new patient and requires rapid problem-solving to piece together a differential diagnosis and treatment." 

Mayra: "How has Dr. Tee been as a mentor?"

Audrey: "She has taught me the science and personal skills in medicine, both directly and indirectly through my observation. She meticulously goes through medications one by one and replies to every single message to her patients and families. One of the most memorable moments was when she translated an X-ray finding for her patient to Chinese. Although she input the results into Google Translate, this gesture showed the care that she provides above and beyond expectations. Also, she always stays after our shift to answer my questions, teach me reading scans, as well as guide me to mental health resources and fascinating case studies. In the past three months, she gave me feedback on every note I wrote. She taught me that regardless of whether your name ends with an MD, DO, NP, or PA, a good provider cares as a member of a care team. They also wear other hats as their educator and emotional support so that patients trust them with their health."

Mayra: "What are things you’ve learned from Dr. Tee that can help you outside of clinic?" 

Audrey: "One of the most valuable lessons Dr. Tee has taught me is resilience. I’m sure we all know the importance of self-care in medicine during the COVID-19 pandemic. Self-care is a routine part of a bigger resilient lifestyle. During the June training month, I scribed for my first patient. After reviewing my notes, I saw her picture on EPIC turned gray — noted with deceased. This patient struck me, feeling as if she was my patient. I personally faced difficulty emotionally attached to patients, especially when we see patients back to back. Dr. Tee undoubtedly is also empathetic to her patients, but she always has a smile on her face and carries a laugh through difficult conversations during encounters. She did so even when she studied for the internal medicine board exam, doing a research project with me, and taking care of a family member who was ill all at once. Resilience means being able to be adaptable to different situations. This skill is possible when we are truly passionate about and respect for what we do as we create purpose and meaning from them."

Mayra: "Do you have anything else you would like to add?"

Audrey: "In both clinics, I see a wide range of conditions. In this interactive learning process, I see that patients are beyond their conditions. We can get a more detailed HPI based on other aspects of their lives such as their family support, social history, all while respecting their wishes."

Posted on 10/6/21

Mentorship Monday: Infectious Disease Mentor Shoutouts

Written by: Bradley Fong, 2021-22 Chief Scribe

Min Hansen
2021-22 COMET Fellow

Min currently works in the Stanford Infectious Disease specialty clinic with Drs. Daisuke Furukawa and Amy Chang. Min has been having an amazing time since starting her fellowship year with all of her providers. She notes that they all have a “teaching mindset, are kind and generous with their knowledge, and dedicated towards helping all of their patients.”

Dr. Amy Chang, MD

Min shared insight into her incredible learning experience from Dr. Chang and mentioned that she is “very involved both inside and outside the Infectious Disease Clinic.” Min further expanded that Dr. Chang focuses not only on patient care but also on improving the quality of patient care. An example of this is improving the methods and ways health-related information is shared with her patients and how this information can be better conveyed. Min has been able to learn more about this quality improvement project as well as directly implementing these new procedures both “during the exam and within the after visit instructions.” She also mentioned that Dr. Chang continues to give her “many opportunities to follow one of the residents in-clinic and observe how they interact with patients.”

Dr. Daisuke Furukawa, MD

“Dr. Furukawa spends plenty of time prior to each patient visit to give a rundown on what is exactly going on for the specific patient and how best to approach the treatment plan.” Min stated that Dr. Furukawa always makes sure to “explain the pathology of each type of infectious disease as well as the reasoning behind the different treatments for each condition.” She has seen many rare and interesting patient cases and been able to see many of the follow-up visits with patients to observe how they are progressing throughout each unique course of treatment. Min said, “Dr. Furukawa is always happy to answer any of her immediate questions even during his busy clinics and is there to provide any clarification when she scribes for him.” 

Posted on 9/27/21

What is a COMET Senior Scribe?

Written by: Jacob Less, 2021-22 Chief Medical Scribe Emeritus

The Stanford Medical Scribe Fellowship (COMET) started in 2015 with two scribes working with four providers in one Stanford family medicine clinic. Even during the global COVID-19 pandemic, COMET continued to expand in its work with pre-health students and the support of healthcare providers. Today, COMET Fellows work in 20+ different clinics with 70+ providers that are genuinely interested in providing mentorship, clinical immersion, and research development to pre-health students. 

COMET Fellows have the option to continue their scribing experience even after their Fellowship Year is completed. Randy Lin, is one such “senior scribe” who has experience with healthcare providers in Family Medicine and Infectious Diseases. In his second year with COMET, he is piloting in a General Surgery clinic with Stanford’s, Dr. Aussama Nassar. The following is an interview of his experience so far. 


Jacob: "How has scribing in an outpatient surgery clinic been for you?" 

Randy: "If I were to describe my experience in Gen. Surg. clinic in a few words, I would say stimulating, rewarding, and inspiring. 

Overall, from the perspective of a scribe, I did not have any outstanding concerns adjusting to a completely new clinic right from the start. I focused my time looking up all his dot-phrases in preparation for my first shift, which put me in a headspace to learn and absorb new knowledge at a moment’s notice (while in clinic) instead of having my mind run a million miles per hour consumed by the thought of completing my documentation. I essentially was able to compile all my scribing knowledge and skills learned from Family Medicine (FM) and Infectious Disease (ID) clinics and put them to use right from the start.

In close to 2 months of scribing in Gen. Surg. so far, I feel I was able to further improve my ability to write up all sections of the SOAP note. I am continuing to hone how I balance brevity versus details for each note, with the goal to mainly include the vital information relevant for each type of visit - new patient, return patient, pre-op, or post-op visits.

When I do come across questions or uncertainty, I feel like there are always people with whom I can direct my questions in the clinic. Even if Dr. Nassar is not around, I can direct my questions to residents or medical students."

Jacob: "How many clinics have you scribed in and How has scribing in surgery been different from scribing in your other clinics?"

Randy: "During my time as a COMET fellow and senior scribe, I have scribed in Family Medicine, Infectious Disease, and now General Surgery. Each Gen. Surg. provider also has to rotate through the Thursday Acute Care Surgery Clinic (ACS), which is strictly for return patient visits or post-op follow-up visits. I have scribed for Thursday ACS clinic for many different surgeons that rotate through, essentially after Dr. Nassar requested my help and participation. ...Having a different provider every week can still be challenging in that the variation in documentation style can be challenging for me. In all, my experience in Gen Surg thus far allowed me to work with multiple providers, which also means I am constantly learning and adapting, which in itself is stimulating fun. Efficiency is another skill I have been focusing my efforts on, as that seems to be the area I can provide the most benefit to these providers.

My experience in FM, ID, and Gen. Surg. altogether helped me develop a holistic appreciation for the differences between the roles of a provider from each specialty – from coordinating care, to the actual surgery performed, to close patient-monitoring longitudinally."

Jacob: "How has Dr. Nassar been as a mentor?" 

Randy: "Dr. Nassar has been a tremendously supportive mentor. Right from the start, he made sure to understand what my goals are for the next year(s) and displayed interest to help me with my career development and future plans. He proposed the possibility of doing research when I feel ready to take on more responsibilities. Generally, when he teaches me, he is always uplifting and very constructive, and the icing on top is that he teaches me the way he would to other medical students that are rotating with him at the time. In fact, for most of my shifts, there usually are med students or residents around, so I am learning right along with them.

I attribute my positive experience thus far to Dr. Nassar’s flexible, enthusiastic, and encouraging mentorship style. He makes sure to circle back to me to make sure my questions are addressed, that I understand a patient’s illness, criteria qualifying a patient for surgical management, the details of common surgical procedures (i.e. hernia repair), and common risk factors or perioperative complications that may arise during surgery/post-op. When he does have suggestions for me to improve documentation, he promptly informs me and gives me the room to improve. The same applies when he is complimenting on certain aspects of my notes. He creates a safe space for me to acclimate to this clinic’s pacing and patient presentations that are new to me. I am genuinely appreciative of his understanding nature because it helps me further develop my confidence as a scribe and as a student in the clinic environment. His act of connecting me with different providers, residents, medical students has been invaluable for building new connections that I can utilize in the clinic and also in preparation for my medical school applications next year.

I find that this pairing with him has been working well and beyond my expectations. I’ve been able to honestly express my anxieties and problems related to my pre-med journey, and focus on developing myself as I keep pushing forward."

Jacob: "Why did you continue as a senior scribe after completing your Fellowship Year with COMET?" 

Randy: "The one overarching goal is to continue challenging myself in a new clinic environment to promote learning. After scribing in an ID clinic that worked so closely with Ortho. Surg., I was interested to learn more about common procedures that are performed beyond bone debridement, joint replacement, or prosthetic joint placement. Learning about new conditions, surgeries that can treat them, and the decision-making process between surgical options have all been exciting to learn about. Everything I learned so far about laparoscopic procedures, hernia repairs, lipomas, cysts, etc. were new to me, but that’s what makes this process exciting! In addition, I did not want to pass up the opportunity to contrast the role and day-to-day of a PCP vs. a surgeon.

Thanks to COMET, I discovered a genuine appreciation for the opportunity to work closely with a provider and his/her team over a period of time. When providers who I scribe for acknowledge the amount of time I saved them, it further motivates me to be a productive contributor to a health care team. In fact, this opportunity to pilot a specialty is a way for me to give back to the COMET program. In my opinion, a win-win for both sides.

Being able to observe how different providers interact with medical students and residents that are also learning about the clinic helps prepare me mentally and set proper expectations anticipating that medical school is on my horizon."

Posted on 9/21/21

Mentor Shoutout: Dr. Anitra Romfh, MD

Written by: Al Gourrier Jr, 2020-2021 Chief Scribe of Primary Care Clinics

Akaansha Varma
2020-21 COMET Fellow

“I feel like I’m taking a premed class just for me, where Dr. Romfh teaches me about medical school and how to prepare myself for medical school at the specialty level. She puts so much of her time and effort into my learning and overall experience, and I tremendously appreciate her” said Akaansha Varma. “Dr. Romfh’s attitude to life and her personality are the best! She’s very conscious, polite, and so bubbly and nice – but she also does so many things and she’s able to manage them all so well – I really admire her!”

Akaansha Varma works as a medical scribe for Dr. Anitra Romfh, a Stanford physician in Adult Congenital Heart Disease. Akaansha decided to go into the healthcare field during her senior year of college, so she wanted to be a medical scribe to gain clinical experience. “I came into COMET thinking I was going to observe and ask questions to gain experience. My experience with Dr. Romfh is way beyond just observing, typing and documenting what I saw – it was so much more in terms of her mentoring and teaching” said Akaansha. “We have more of a student-teacher relationship than a scribe-provider relationship, and Dr. Romfh would even introduce me as her student sometimes.”

Dr. Romfh helped Akaansha become the best scribe that she could be – explaining her rationale behind every medical decision, frequently finding teaching moments in clinic, and allowing Akaansha to ask questions. “Dr. Romfh is captivating and very engaging, and the first couple of months that I scribed for Dr. Romfh, she would take an additional hour of her day to go over all of the notes” said Akaansha. “We work in a very specialized sub specialty with its own terminology, so she spent that hour at the beginning of the year teaching me the proper language for the specialty. I knew basic heart anatomy before joining the COMET Fellowship, but I was taken aback, by the amount of material we went over together.”

Dr. Romfh also serves as a mentor in emphasizing medical school preparations. For instance, she’ll point out provider presentations to Akaansha and give her tips for presentations so that Akaansha is prepared when she’s doing patient rounds for medical school. Dr. Romfh also works with many different types of providers, so Akaansha has a better understanding of how residents, fellows, and Physician Assistants work within the healthcare team.

“We focus on the science behind medicine in clinic, while other times, we’ll focus on the patient healthcare aspect of medicine,” said Akaansha. “Dr. Romfh is a great mentor, answering all of my ethical questions about medicine. She’s so personable with me and her patients – her patients adore her and I realized that this is the kind of medicine I want to do because being so up close I can see how the providers are able to develop close relationship with their patients and how it’s so intimate – as they effect real change.”

Dr. Romfh builds strong bonds with many of her patients since she’ll often see them biannually or quarterly. “Those bonds will turn some appointments into a Family Medicine clinic at times, and she’s kind of given me a good example of how primary care may work” said Akaansha. “She makes sure that her patients are well cared of and she always gets to know her patients well – I really admire her for that.”

Dr. Romfh also extends her mentorship to many others in the COMET Fellowship. She’s currently heading the monthly cardiology meetings – taking extra time out of her already busy schedule to teach Akaansha and other scribes about cardiology, serving as a mentor to many in the COMET Fellowship. Dr. Romfh also influences the medical careers of our fellows in small ways like inspiring others to learn others languages. “Working with Dr. Romfh, I’ve seen so many patients open up to her and she has really inspired me to learn Spanish,” said Akaansha. “Dr. Romfh and I talked about learning Spanish, and she disclosed that she uses Doc Molly for medical Spanish. Dr. Romfh is always giving me tips to reach my personal and professional goals.”

Akaansha and Dr. Romfh are very comfortable with each other, and they actually developed this great bond through remote scribing. “The funny thing is that I’ve only met Dr. Romfh in person once – on accident too – but we were so excited to see each other, and virtually, I’ve met her husband and all of her kids. I know her entire career path and she takes the time to learn mine as well,” said Akaansha. “There’s a stigma of having difficulties connecting with providers virtually, but I don’t have that and I’ve never experienced that with Dr. Romfh.”

“Dr. Romfh really made virtual scribing the best thing! She even takes the laptop with her into the clinic so I can still observe the entire appointment. We join the patient appointments directly via EPIC, but we also have an ongoing Zoom call that we return to so that we can discuss each patient and ask questions. I feel like we are really able to connect during the down time between patients,” said Akaansha. “I don’t have a lot of family in the United States and I don’t really have any family in the healthcare field, so she has really taken me in and given me all of the insider information. We have similar cultural backgrounds so it’s nice to talk with her about anything.”

Dr. Romfh and Akaansha also recently presented at a conference, the Single Ventricle Investigator Meeting, together. “Dr. Romfh has so many things on her plate and she manages her time so well, always finding time to help me along my journey. She brainstorms with me, allows me to present to her, and then we practice together. We’re very comfortable together, and she’ll even be at her home cooking dinner while listening to me practice my presentation. She’ll then give me feedback, revise my work, and we’ll continue practicing,” said Akaansha. “She’s always sharing her personal tips and strategies to efficiently conduct research, prepare for presentations, and be ready for my future career in healthcare. She always provides me constant support and supervision, and she’s always putting in extra time and effort to help me out. I’m very grateful for all of her help!”

Dr. Romfh is truly an extraordinary mentor and we are lucky to have her as a COMET faculty provider and mentor. Dr. Romfh and Akaansha have developed an amazing bond this Fellowship year and we strive to have every COMET fellow have similar experiences and opportunities within their Fellowship year.

Posted on 5/3/21

Mentor Shoutout: Dr. Linda Barman, MD

Written by: Al Gourrier Jr, 2020-2021 Chief Scribe of Primary Care Clinics

Dr. Linda Barman is one of COMET’s wonderful mentoring providers. She has been an inspiring mentor to six COMET fellows over the past few years. Check out her profile and read some of the lasting impressions that Dr. Barman has made on her medical scribes.


Elly Hickey
2020-21 COMET Fellow

“Dr. Barman has been a fantastic mentor over the past couple of months! She takes the time to explain everything from complex medical cases to the basics of handwashing for proper infection control. She finds every opportunity to teach me when I am in the clinic and she even shares educational resources with me outside of the clinic.”

Farheen Shaikh
2019-20 COMET Fellow

"Dr. Barman, A beautiful person inside and out! She is a dedicated physician with amazing clinical expertise, charismatic personality and positive attitude. I've always looked up to her. She epitomizes what a great teacher and mentor is. Grateful for the privilege of being a part of her team during COMET Fellowship Program."

Julie Moon
2019-20 COMET Fellow

“Scribing for Dr. Barman was an enriching experience. She’s very knowledgeable and always puts time aside at the end of the day to answer all my questions. Her passion and enthusiasm for her profession was evident whenever she would interact with her patients. She taught me professionalism through her actions. The experience inspired me to want to become a confident and wonderful physician like her in the future and I am extremely grateful to have scribed for her.”

Marcia Mata
2019-20 COMET Fellow

“Dr. Barman has excelled in her role as a mentor. She has an incredible ability to make everything a teaching moment, is always genuinely excited to answer questions, and is able to effectively do so while juggling her administrative and medical duties. Her dedication to teaching goes beyond that of answering questions. Dr. Barman emphasizes connecting with her students on a personal level and helping them succeed in their pursuits. She is always willing to offer assistance to anyone who needs it and does so with humility, which is only supported by the amount of times I have seen other providers seek her out for help in diagnosing and treating their patients. Dr. Barman has also built excellent rapport among her patients due to her empathetic and caring approach when treating them. Even in Express Care, a clinic where the providers do not serve as primary care, I often saw patients return to visit Dr. Barman specifically, which speaks volumes of her reputation in patient care.”

Posted on 2/19/21

Mentor Shoutout: Dr. Jonathan Shaw, MD

Written by: Al Gourrier Jr, 2020-2021 Chief Scribe of Primary Care Clinics

Mayra Reyes

2020-21 COMET Fellow

“Dr. Shaw believes in me and he feels confident in my abilities. He is always there to help and make me feel like a better person. I haven’t had this kind of mentorship before. I am able to see myself as a future medical professional, something I’ve had difficulty seeing as a first generation LatinX student” said Mayra Reyes. “I have the full package with Dr. Shaw as my mentor – learning about medicine, socializing and working with the community, and being an advocate for the community.”

Mayra works as a medical scribe with Dr. Jonathan Shaw, a physician at Ravenswood Family Health Center. Mayra studied Anthropology at UC Berkeley prior to working as a medical scribe with the Stanford Medical Scribe Fellowship. She’s interested in the cultural aspects in medicine, specifically how an individuals’ bone structure can alter depending on their social, cultural, and economical status. She entered the program excited to work with Dr. Shaw because she found similarities in their educational background and interests.  

“Being paired up with Dr. Shaw as my mentor was really cool, because he’s interested in social sciences as well, receiving a B.A. in Philosophy from Yale University before getting his M.D. at Harvard Medical School” said Reyes. He also provided maternal and infant care in rural Guatemala, and he has largely provided for vulnerable and under-served populations, including immigrants and medically complex veterans. “He’s super into community medicine and all of his patients love him” said Reyes. “We’ll see so many different personalities from displaced individuals to recently incarcerated individuals. Every visit is so different, and Dr. Shaw does a great job of reading his patients and providing the utmost care to each one of them.”   

Dr. Shaw also takes the time to teach Mayra in clinic and prepare her for medical school. “He’s always willing to teach me, go over diagnoses, and I am constantly learning from him. Every day is pretty exciting and I’m excited to go into clinic and work with him. I’m beyond grateful for this Fellowship and his mentorship. This has been such a rewarding experience” said Reyes. “Dr. Shaw also gives me autonomy in writing the medical note and assisting him with medications, orders, and patients, fully preparing me for medical school.”  

Dr. Shaw really advocates for people. He saw Mayra’s research and Spanish skills, and he helped her get the Patient Service Specialist position she has at the Roots Community Health Center in East Oakland, where she works with Covid-19 community Outreach and Telehealth services. “He empowers me and advocates for me, reassuring that my work is important and meaningful. For instance, if I say I’m a medical scribe with the COMET Fellowship in meetings, he’ll add that not only am I a medical scribe but also have good insights since I spent a year in Mexico conducting research on traditional medicine and volunteer with the City of East Palo Alto with Covid-19 testing and registration” said Reyes. Dr. Shaw doesn’t allow her to undersell herself, and he constantly reminds her of her worth and value.   

Dr. Shaw also emphasizes his mentorship role in connecting Mayra with other healthcare professionals. “Dr. Shaw includes me in the meetings with other physicians and researchers so that I’m always learning and gaining new experiences from my time working with him. He often puts me in contact with the right people, from research to job opportunities to insurance claim representatives” said Reyes. “For instance, I told him that I was interested in learning about complicated pregnancies and underdeveloped bone growth in the womb, and he connected me with other providers, like his wife in Stanford Gynecology, to learn more about various interests.”

Mayra has a very unique experience in Ravenswood – not only in providing for a wide range of people and often speaking Spanish in clinic – but also in developing a strong bond with her provider and mentor, Dr. Shaw. We are committed to teaching and supporting every one of our fellows, and Dr. Shaw truly embodies that commitment and leads by example.

Posted on 1/25/21

Bradley Fong

2020-2021 COMET Fellow

Dermatology Mentor Shoutouts

Written by: Al Gourrier Jr, 2020-2021 Chief Scribe of Primary Care Clinics

Bradley Fong works with three amazing providers in Stanford Dermatology: Dr. Andrew Ji, Dr. Roberto Novoa, and Dr. Albert Chiou. Bradley has a great relationship with his providers, and they each serve as mentors in different ways. Check out their profiles and read about Bradley’s experiences with each one of his providers.

Dr. Andrew Ji, MD

“He is a doctor who is so down to earth and inspiring to me,” Fong said. 

Bradley spoke about how Dr. Ji’s informal mentorship style is refreshing, and how Dr. Ji breaks down any barriers, allowing for them to connect on the same level. Dr. Ji also shares his personal experiences with Bradley, contributing to their mentor-mentee relationship. “I was expecting to just follow my medical scribing training and translate that into the Dermatology setting, but Dr. Ji went above and beyond those expectations through sitting down with me and fine tuning my abilities while also making sure I understood his thought processes,” Fong said. “He keeps me in the loop, academically, and directs me through the note while also motivating me to want to understand the work he does outside of the medical note.”

Dr. Roberto Novoa, MD

“Dr. Novoa is very excited and happy all of the time. He always laughs a lot and shares his life with others,” Fong said. 

Bradley spoke about how Dr. Novoa is a dermatologist and dermatopathologist, so he’s able to look at pictures of skin cells and determine diagnoses from them. “He’s very knowledgeable and technical, and he has the ability to dive into diseases that are outside of dermatology,” Fong said. “He’ll have me besides the resident at times, and he’ll challenge the both of us to look at images and develop our own differential diagnoses.” Dr. Novoa would then discuss how they came to their conclusions and he’d teach them. “He doesn’t only mentor me in regards to medical scribing, but he’ll include me in the understanding of the various pathologies and deeper conversations that providers have,” Fong said. Furthermore, Dr. Novoa facilitated a dermatology skin research group with Dr. Chiou and another provider, and he invited Bradley to join them on a research project.

Dr. Albert Chiou, MD

“Dr. Chiou is always aware of everything that is going on, academically and professionally, and he makes sure that the workload is attainable,” Fong said.

“Dr. Chiou is one of the most thorough providers, and he’ll sit down with me to go over every patient one by one so I can better understand the cases I see with him in clinic. He makes sure that I’m reading up on dermatology textbooks so that I understand all of the information and then apply that knowledge to the patients that we see together. He always serves as a mentor and helps me outside of clinic with professional development, from medical school questions and application assistance to personal statement advice. He always tries to connect me with others, and he recently connected me with an individual who just got accepted into medical school so that we could discuss advice and expectations prior to starting my application,” Fong said. Dr. Chiou also asked Bradley if he wanted to work on a research project with him. “He could see that I would work efficiently and contribute to the project,” Fong said. “He motivates me even more in giving me the opportunity to be a part of the publication process.”

Posted on 12/14/20

Mentor Shoutout: Dr. Erika Schillinger, MD

Written by: Al Gourrier Jr, 2020-2021 Chief Scribe of Primary Care Clinics

Dr. Erika Schillinger is one of COMET’s wonderful providers. She was one of the first providers to join the team as a mentoring provider, and she’s mentored seven COMET fellows since 2016. Check out her profile and read some of the lasting impressions that Dr. Schillinger has made on her medical scribes.


Priyanka Suresh
2017-18 COMET Fellow

“It was an absolute pleasure working with Dr. Schillinger who was much more than a regular mentor. It was a sheer privilege to observe the special rapport and relationship she holds with her patients - some of whom she has known from birth through to adulthood. You can really learn the art of clinical medicine through observing her. Her kind, humble and down to earth nature provided a comfortable environment to ask questions and improve learning. I felt empowered as a scribe working with her as she really believed in using the expertise of all members of the team and encouraged everyone’s input to provide the patient with the best care. Working in her team was magical. She is a wonderful person to be around and a real inspiration.”


Claire Godenzi
2018-19 COMET Fellow

“Where do I even start! Dr. Schillinger is one of the most empowering mentors I have ever had. From the start, I felt like a valued and important part of the healthcare team. She encouraged me to ask questions, make predictions, follow my passions (clinical and research) and teach others. Plus, she was very supportive of my career by sharing wisdom and crafting letters of recommendation. Above all, Dr. Schillinger, showed me exactly the kind of physician I want to be - one guided by boundless compassion, patience and curiosity. I will forever be grateful for that!”


Al Gourrier Jr
2019-20 COMET Fellow

“Dr. Schillinger is one of the most caring, genuine, and thoughtful people I’ve had the pleasure to work with, and I’m so lucky that she served as my mentor during the COMET 2019 – 2020 Fellowship year. She would often ask “what would you like to get out of clinic?” before our shifts together, and she always found opportunities to personally teach me (e.g. how to properly use a stethoscope, insert an IUD, or even listen to a patient’s heart murmur) while providing the utmost care to every single patient. I was her medical scribe, but I felt like a medical student when I worked with her, because she challenged me and made sure I was learning the trade every time I worked with her. I cannot thank Dr. Schillinger enough for being my mentor and personally showing me how to be a better provider and person.”


Elyse Gonzalez
2020-21 COMET Fellow

“Although COVID-19 has kept me from coming into clinic, it has not kept me from working with and learning from Dr. Schillinger, an amazing mentor and patient-centered provider. She has gone out of her way, connecting with me through FaceTime, to have me join her in clinic and to help me make the most of this experience. Outside of clinic, we are working together on a PC-PEP project geared toward helping patients author their own HPIs in order to increase patient engagement with their electronic medical record. I am incredibly appreciative of Dr. Schillinger’s constant support which has already helped me start growing both academically and professionally.”

Posted on 11/16/20

Carolina Chong Liao (left) and Dr. Can “Angela” Jiang (right) at their monthly research outdoor diabetes group.

Mentor Shoutout: Dr. Can (Angela) Jiang, MD

Written by: Al Gourrier Jr, 2020-2021 Chief Scribe of Primary Care Clinics

One of the most influential and priceless aspects of the COMET Fellowship is the mentorship of the providers that our fellows get the opportunity to work with. Carolina Chong Liao has formed an amazing bond with her mentor, Dr. Can “Angela” Jiang, and their wonderful relationship is representative of many other relationships that our scribes form with their providers.

Carolina has the opportunity to scribe with Dr. Jiang 9.5 hours a week, conduct research with her, and audit a course with her at the Stanford School of Medicine. Dr. Jiang ensures that all of her mentees will get the most out of their fellowship year, and her guidance and support of Carolina is one of the reasons COMET is so special.

Carolina and Dr. Jiang have made the most of virtual scribing due to COVID-19. Dr. Jiang often shares her screen as she edits Carolina’s medical note after telehealth visits. This gives Carolina the opportunity to directly observe how Dr. Jiang writes her medical notes. Carolina appreciates Dr. Jiang’s one on one mentorship and she enjoys the opportunity to bond with Dr. Jiang with the flexibility that virtual scribing allows.

She said that “getting to know [Dr. Jiang’s] workflow as much as possible aside from seeing patients gives me a better understanding of what a provider’s day-to-day looks like and how to best manage their busy schedule.” The small things, like developing strategies for time management, are often learned from directly working with providers, and Carolina’s experiences with Dr. Jiang’s mentorship are a testament to that.

“Dr. Jiang prioritizes my learning and wants me to get as much out of the program as I can, so she suggested that I take a medical terminology course with her to strengthen my knowledge,” Carolina said. Carolina and Dr. Jiang both speak Mandarin, and they regularly see Mandarin-speaking patients in-clinic. They bonded over their shared native tongue, and Dr. Jiang was able to get them both to audit a 10 week Intermediate Medical Mandarin II course through the Stanford School of Medicine.

“It’s a huge privilege to be able to audit a class with Dr. Jiang and it offers me another opportunity to advance myself,” Carolina said. The class “has definitely brought us closer and allowed us to further develop our mentor-student relationship. We get to practice our class material and apply that knowledge when we have a Mandarin speaking patient.”

Dr. Jiang also asked Carolina if she wanted to join her research project investigating the impact of an outdoor diabetes group course on chronic condition management and preventative care in a homeless population during COVID-19. Dr. Jiang wants Carolina to have an interactive research experience with COMET, so she has Carolina teach the group a preventative diabetes topic (e.g. portion control) at the outdoors courses.

“She makes my experience more memorable and fun” and she “fosters my learning from scribing and many other areas to improve my clinical expertise” Carolina said. “Having Dr. Jiang’s expertise and guidance on how to do this is very comforting, because I trust her with my life. She is so efficient and knowledgeable, and I feel lucky to have her as my mentor.” The bond that Carolina and Dr. Jiang has formed is absolutely amazing, and bonds like theirs are some of the unparalleled ways that the COMET Fellowship supports their scribes to become whatever they strive to be in life.

Posted on 10/10/20