I graduated in 2006 from Medical School, after that I worked for a year in a small rural clinic 1 hour outside of Caracas, my hometown. The reason I applied to ROI, back in 2007, was because I had been working in my community for 6 years, specially training people to do hasbarah, and I thought that this could be a really great learning experience and that could bring something back. Basically I wanted to make social connections, I wanted to interact with other communities to know what activities they do, to developed new strategies, get some new ideas, I wanted to find a way to make the young regain interest in the Jewish life.
Lots changed since then, I actually met my husband during the ROI120 summit and ended up moving to Israel, were I lived for 10 years, had 3 girls and finish my neurology residency. I moved to San Francisco in the summer of 2017, in order to start my Fellowship as an Atlantic Fellow at the Global Brain Health Institute (GBHI). My aim during this fellowship was to acquire knowledge, tools, and connections to advance neurological care, while further emphasizing the importance of maintaining a healthy brain. I also hoped to develop the communication skills needed to educate the medical and general community about aging and sleep disturbances. My hope is that through proper treatment and guidance, I can help integrate patients back into society and improve the quality of their lives.
Before becoming a GBHI Fellow, I worked as a neurologist at the Movement Disorders and Neuroautonomic Clinic in the Tel Aviv Medical Center. There, I mainly took care of the Parkinson and Parkinson Plus patients. I also leaded the Huntington Disease Multidisciplinary Clinic in Tel Aviv, the only Huntington disease specialized clinic in Israel. This former type of patient have a wide spectrum of autonomic problems, which raised my curiosity for the autonomic system and inspired me to pursue research.
Through my work, I realized that most patients can cope well with the motor limitations of neurodegenerative illnesses, but they find the non motor issues (sleep, cognitive and autonomic disturbances) more challenging. Current treatment methodologies and tools are insufficient for treating patients and improving the quality of their lives. Therefore, further research, resources, and precise application of skills is needed in order to improve treatment for every single patient.
My future goals are to contribute to the further development of the sleep, autonomic medicine and the dementia field at my institution and in Israel in general, all of it with the objective of advancing treatment opportunities for our patients, as well as the knowledge related to these diseases. So not so much hasbarah anymore, being in Israel for 10 years can influence your views and make it sometimes to difficult, at least for me, to not get emotional while talking about it. So I decided to contribute in a different way, through my work as a doctor I try to give back and improve people's life.