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Susan K. Parsons, MD, MRP, Program Director, is Founding Director of the Reid R. Sacco Adolescent and Young Adult (AYA) Cancer Program at Tufts Medical Center. She has over 25 years of experience as a board certified pediatric hematologist/oncologist. As a Professor at Tufts University School of Medicine, her research focuses on functional and fiscal impact of chronic illness on children and their families. She is an internationally renowned scholar of health-related quality of life assessment for children; the instruments she has developed have been used in multiple clinical trials. Originally trained as a health economist, Dr. Parsons has worked closely with payers and institutional leaders on the development of alternative payment models for high cost treatments, including bone marrow transplantation.
Anita Kumar, MD, MSCE, is the AYA Program’s adult-trained oncologist. Dr. Kumar spent her undergraduate years at MIT and then attended Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York. She completed her residency and fellowship at the University of Pennsylvania. In addition to her work in the AYA Program Dr. Kumar also sees patients with hematologic malignancies within Tufts Cancer Center.
Nadine Linendoll, PhD, MDiv, GNP, is a Nurse Practitioner in the AYA Program. After working for over 10 years as a bedside nurse, Nadine decided to pursue additional education to become an advanced practice nurse. In 2006 she began working as an oncology nurse practitioner specializing in the care of individuals with brain and spinal tumors. Nadine has special interest in the spiritual aspects of care; she completed a Master's of Divinity degree and, as part of that curriculum, worked as a pastoral care intern. Nadine has also completed a doctoral degree in nursing. Her research focuses include supporting patients and families with chronic illness and health-related quality of life.
Rachel Murphy-Banks, MA, Program Manager, is the point of contact for the AYA Program. She works with patients to schedule their survivorship as well as referral appointments and helps get their questions answered. She also strives to build connections with the AYA community within and outside of the Medical Center through the program’s Facebook page, Blog, Instagram account and AYA Community Connection e-newsletter, and works to promote AYA awareness through the program’s educational presentation initiative. Diagnosed with lymphoma in her mid-twenties, Rachel keenly understands the importance of AYA specific care. She received a Masters in Intercultural Relations, with a focus on young adult cancer survivors.
Annemarie Conroy, PNP, MSN, serves as Liaison to the AYA Program, assisting younger patients who are ready to transition from pediatric- to adolescent & young adult-care. Annmarie has been with the Floating Hospital for Children, part of Tufts Medical Center, for nearly thirty years. She has worked in the Pediatric Hematology/Oncology clinic as a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner since 1998 and has a Master of Science in Nursing from Boston College.