Meet the Fellows
Rhami Khorfan, MD
Dr. Khorfan’s research interests are in surgical outcomes and quality improvement in vascular and thoracic surgery. He is particularly interested in minimally invasive techniques and emerging technology. He is also interested in working to improve surgical education and residency training. Dr. Khorfan obtained a bachelor’s degree in Near Eastern Studies at the University of Michigan, and his medical degree at Wayne State University School of Medicine. He took a year off during medical school to complete a master’s degree in Epidemiology and Biostatistics at Northwestern University and gain experience in epidemiologic research. He is currently taking time away from his general surgery residency at St. Joseph Mercy – Ann Arbor to work with SOQIC as a post-doctoral fellow.
MeiXi Ma, MD
Dr. Ma's research centers on surgical quality and outcomes improvement with particular interests in health disparities, health literacy, and education. She is also an American College of Surgeons Clinical Scholar, focusing on geriatric surgical standards and outcomes. Dr. Ma obtained her bachelor’s degree in biology and photography at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia and medical degree from the University of Alabama School of Medicine (UAB), Birmingham. She is taking time away from her general surgery residency, also at UAB, to complete a postdoctoral fellowship and obtain a Master’s degree in Health Services and Outcomes Research through the Northwestern University Institute for Public Health and Medicine.
Cary Schlick, MD
Dr. Schlick’s research interests lie in quality adherence and access to healthcare across geographic and health system boundaries. Specifically, she is interested in adherence to cancer care metrics in relation to geographic and financial variables, and how patient outcomes are impacted by treatments available to them. Cary is originally from rural Minnesota, and ultimately aims to lessen healthcare disparities across America through both her clinical and research efforts. She received a BA at St. Olaf College, followed by an MD at Case Western Reserve University. She is taking time away from her general surgery residency at Northwestern to focus on her research interests while obtaining a Master’s degree in Health Services and Outcomes Research through the Northwestern University Institute for Public Health and Medicine.
Tarik Yuce, MD
Dr. Yuce’s interests lie in outcomes research as well as surgical quality improvement relating to minimally invasive benign foregut and bariatric surgery. His focus is on identifying possible avenues for improving bariatric outcome measures such as readmission and surgical site infections. He also is exploring methods to augment minimally invasive surgical training for general surgery residency. Dr. Yuce obtained a bachelor’s degree in biology at Boston University in Boston, MA. He then completed his medical degree at Temple University in Philadelphia, PA. He is currently taking time away from his general surgery residency at Northwestern Memorial Hospital to complete a Master’s in Health Services and Outcomes Research while a T-32 postdoctoral fellow at the Northwestern Center for Education in Healthcare Studies.
Lindsey Zhang, MD
Dr. Zhang is an American College of Surgeons/John A. Hartford Foundation James C. Thompson Geriatrics Surgical Research Fellow. She will be completing a two-year fellowship working towards enhancing surgical care of elderly patients. Her other interests include quality improvement, surgical outcomes research and surgical education. Dr. Zhang received her bachelor’s degree in neuroscience from Washington University in St. Louis and her medical degree from the University of Minnesota Medical School. She is taking time away from her general surgery residency at the University of Chicago to obtain a master’s degree in Health Services and Outcomes Research through the Northwestern University Institute for Public Health and Medicine.
Brian Brajcich, MD
Dr. Brajcich’s research interests include surgical quality improvement and healthcare outcomes, particularly in colorectal and oncologic surgery. He is originally from the Seattle area and obtained his bachelor’s degree from Gonzaga University in Spokane, Washington, and continued on to obtain his medical degree from Case Western Reserve University. He is currently taking time away from his general surgery residency at Northwestern University to pursue a two-year research fellowship and is additionally a Clinical Scholar with the American College of Surgeons. During his fellowship, Dr. Brajcich is obtaining a master’s degree in Health Services and Outcomes Research from Northwestern University.
Matthew Chia, MD
Dr. Chia’s research will focus on tracking outcomes in the Vascular Quality Initiative (VQI), with a particular interest in outcomes of surgically and medically managed aortic dissection. Separately, he will explore methods to understand surgical education at the medical student and resident level. Dr. Chia grew up in the suburbs of Boston, MA, before obtaining his bachelor’s degree from Northwestern University and his medical degree from the University of Illinois College of Medicine in Peoria. He is taking time away from his training in the integrated vascular surgery residency at Northwestern to conduct his research, and to obtain a master’s degree in Health Services and Outcomes Research.
Martha-Conley Ingram, MD
Dr. Ingram’s research centers on Health Sciences Research and delivery of high-quality surgical care to Pediatric Patients. As a research Scholar for Northwestern’s Division of Pediatric Surgery, she will be spending two years working on quality improvement and outcomes research for Pediatric Surgery. Dr. Ingram has special interests in addressing health disparities and inequities in pediatric surgery, and is therefore enrolling in the Certification for Health Services and Outcomes Research through Northwestern University Institute for Public Health and Medicine. Dr. Ingram holds a bachelor’s degree in Biomedical Engineering from Vanderbilt University, her medical degree from Emory University, and a Master’s in Public Health from Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University. Following her research time at Northwestern, she will be returning to complete her General Surgery Residency at Emory University, and apply for Pediatric Surgical Fellowship.
Chelsea Fischer, MD
Dr. Fischer is an American College of Surgeons Clinical Scholar in Residence with her research centering on implementing evidence-based pathways in the Improving Surgical Care and Recovery (ISCR) program. Her research interests lie in surgical quality improvement and outcomes relating to perioperative care. Dr. Fischer received her Bachelor’s degree in biology and studio art from Bucknell University and her medical degree at Drexel University College of Medicine. She is taking time away from her general surgery residency at Loyola University Medical Center to complete her research fellowship at the American College of Surgeons and a master’s degree in Health Services and Outcomes Research at Northwestern University.