I was born in China and grew up in Ontario, Canada, where the cold winters are long and snow covered the ground for half the year. I never liked the cold, so I began my journey south. I received my medical school training at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York, my internal medicine residency training at Yale-New Haven Hospital, and my gastroenterology and hepatology fellowship training back at Albert Einstein at Montefiore Medical Center. After a decade in the slightly warmer climates of New York and Connecticut, my family and I decided to make our dream move to Hawaii, where the people are as warm and beautiful as the weather and landscape of the islands.
Coming from a family of teachers, I always assumed that I would become a teacher, too. But my mother, who died young from cancer, inspired me to pursue medicine. Fortunately, being a physician allows me to be an eternal teacher by educating my patients and their families, colleagues, and trainees. I’m also a lifelong learner, always aspiring to understand the latest developments in my field.
Over 2,000 years ago Hippocrates wisely said, "All disease begins in the gut." To this day, we’re only just beginning to understand how our gut and microbiome can deeply influence the rest of the body, including the mind. Similarly, the liver is particularly fascinating because of its extreme resilience when injured and its critical role in the functions of many other organ systems. I love the fields of gastroenterology and hepatology (the study of the liver) because it covers such a wide variety of illnesses and requires both technical skills and critical thinking. It’s also one of the few areas of medicine in which one can identify, locate, and treat the cause of a problem all in one sitting.
By reading gastroenterology and hepatology journals and attending national and international conferences, I’m able to keep abreast of new guidelines and developments in the field and to apply them in my own practice. I also have access to the latest information through my professional organizations—the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases, the American Gastroenterological Association, the American College of Gastroenterology, and the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy.
The Hawaii Permanente Medical Group (HPMG) is a well-established, cohesive, and collaborative organization that values evidence-based medicine and always strives to provide high quality care. I’m very happy to be a part of an organization where I’m afforded the ability to spend more time focusing on taking care of my patients and less time on the administrative nuisances of medicine.
I believe in building collaborative partnerships with patients, their families, colleagues, and staff, in order to provide compassionate, innovative, and excellent care. I also believe that knowledge is power. By learning about patients' beliefs and values, and by educating them about their conditions, test results, and treatment options, I’m able to tailor treatment plans to each unique individual.
We moved to Hawaii largely for the wonderful year-round weather, which has allowed my family to enjoy the outdoors and water activities any time of the year. In my spare time, I enjoy photography, snorkeling, trying new cuisines and restaurants, traveling, playing guitar and ukulele, and spending time with my husband, dog, and friends.