Palliative Care Team | Torrance Memorial | South Bay

Meet the Palliative Care Team

palliative care team

Members of the Palliative Care team include:

Physician

A medical doctor who received advanced training and certification in assessing, diagnosis and treating pain and symptoms associated with serious illness. This physician coordinates with other specialists involved in your care

Nurse Practitioner

An advanced practice registered nurse overseen by the Palliative Care physician in assessing, diagnosing and treating serious illnesses. This provider also coordinates with other specialists involved in your care.

Social Services

A licensed clinical social worker who assists in assessing, diagnosis and treating the psychosocial/emotional needs of the patients and their families. This provider is also available for basic resource referrals to community services, in addition to, offering psychotherapy sessions in the clinic.

Pharmacist

A healthcare professional who is knowledgeable in medication usage and assists in reconciling medications to discontinue inappropriate medications, prevent unsafe medication reactions, reduce polypharmacy, provide education and geriatric consultation, minimize delays in therapy due to drug shortages, recommend alternative, cost-effective drugs and promote safe medication administration.

Dietitian

A healthcare professional who understands how to meet a patient’s nutritional needs and provide recommendations on optimizing dietary adjustments while coping with serious illness.

Chaplain

A spiritual counselor can be available upon request to offer additional support when coping with serious illness.


Meet Our Team

Ujjwala Dheeriya, MD - Physician, Medical Director

Ujjwala Dheeriya, MDSites: Hunt Cancer Center, Care Coordination Center

Board Certifications:

  • Hospice and Palliative Care
  • Internal Medicine
  • Internal Medicine with Focus on Hospital Medicine
  • Pediatrics

Education:

  • Bachelor of Arts in Biology, Smith College
  • Doctor of Medicine, University of Virginia School of Medicine
  • Internship and Residency in Internal Medicine and Pediatrics at Baystate Medical Center, Tufts University

Interest in Palliative Care: I am dedicated to optimizing quality of life for my patients through building compassionate relationships with them and their family.

Hobbies: I raise service dogs and enjoy cooking, listening to audiobooks, attending concerts with my husband and spending time with my two teenage sons.


Henry Kaing, DO

Henry Kaing, MDSpecializations:

  • Board-certified: Internal Medicine
  • Board-eligible: Hospice and Palliative Medicine

Education

  • Bachelor of Science at University of California Los Angeles
  • Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine at Touro University California
  • Residency at University of California Irvine
  • Fellowship at University of California Los Angeles

Interest in Palliative Care: My interest in palliative care stems from my desire to provide holistic, person-centered care. I work alongside the interdisciplinary team to support and guide patients and families during their experience with serious illness.

Hobbies: Hiking, photography, spending time with my wife and labradoodle Bailey


Jungok Ha, NP

Jungok Ha, NPSpecializations:

  • Adult Nurse Practitioner ANCC
  • ACHPN (Advanced Certified Hospice and Palliative Nurse)

Education

  • Undergraduate: Kyungpook National University, 1999
  • Graduate: George Mason University, 2007

Interest in Palliative Care: Palliative care treats each patient as a whole person. Team work(providers, social workers, Nurse, chaplains) enables us to support patients with serious illness physically, emotionally, spiritually, and socially- whole person.

Hobbies: Running, Hiking, Soap making, and raising butterflies

Languages Spoken: English and Korean


Tara Bartlett, FNP-C

Tara BartlettSites: Home Based

Specialization:

  • Family Medicine, Palliative Care Medicine

Education:

  • Bachelors of Arts, Communications
  • Suffolk University; Bachelors of Science, Nursing
  • Cal State University, Long Beach; Masters of Science
  • Nursing/FNP, Charles Drew University

Interest in Palliative Care: Palliative Care gives the opportunity to care for a patient physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually.

Hobbies: Hiking, yoga and traveling


Mary Hersh, PhD, RN, FPCN, CHPN - Registered Nurse

Mary HershSites: Inpatient

Specialization:

  • Hospice and Palliative Care Nursing
  • Fellow of Palliative Care Nursing

Education:

  • Bachelor of Science in Nursing, California State University, Northridge
  • Master of Science in Nursing, University of California, Los Angeles
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing, University of California, Los Angeles

Interest in Palliative Care: I am interested in many facets related to Palliative Care. For example, in my clinical role, I love being with patients and families and always try to improve some aspect of their illness experiences. In my teaching role, I enjoy sharing my knowledge with staff and especially enjoy developing professional growth in other nurses interested in this specialty. Lastly, I have enjoyed conducting nursing research focused on nursing presence, empathy and therapeutic communication.

Hobbies: Gardening, writing, being with my family


Danielle Cosgrove, RN, CHPN - Registered Nurse

Danielle CosgroveSites: Inpatient

Specialization/Certifications:

  • Hospice and Palliative Care Nurse

Interest in Palliative Care: I chose to work in Palliative Care because it is an honor to provide guidance, comfort and support to patients and their families dealing with serious illness.

Hobbies: I enjoy gardening, baking and exercise.




Stella Okoro, RN - Registered Nurse

Stella OkoroSites: Home-Based

Education:

  • University of Nigeria, School of Nursing

Interest in Palliative Care: To provide comfort to patients struggling with serious diseases.

Hobbies: Traveling, taking pictures, having quality time with my family and friends, loves children.

Other Languages Spoken: Igbo




Ann Chae, MSW, LCSW, ACHP-SW - Licensed Clinical Social Worker

Ann Chae, LCSWSites: Hunt Cancer Center, Care Coordination Center

Specialization:

  • Oncology
  • Medical Social Work
  • Palliative and Hospice Social Work

Education:

  • Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and Asian American Studies, University of California, Santa Barbara
  • Master of Social Work, University of Southern California

Interest in Palliative Care: I became interested in Palliative Care because I have experienced firsthand the struggle of a family member suffering from a serious illness. Palliative care was never offered to us and we had to navigate next steps alone. It was a very difficult process and I wish we had experts helping us with next steps and educating us with the disease process. The second reason I have an interest in Palliative Care is that I have always found it rewarding to be able to help patients with serious illnesses develop goals of care and lead these difficult conversations. I see Palliative Care as a road map for someone with a serious illness. This roadmap would provide family with tools, support and education to increase quality of life and decrease stress on the family.

Hobbies: Traveling, cooking and spending time with my family.

Other Languages Spoken: Korean


Stephanie Rojas, MSW, LCSW - Licensed Clinical Social Worker

Stephanie RojasSites: Home-Based

Education:

  • California State University, Long Beach
  • Master of Social Work, San Diego State University

Interest in Palliative Care: I've worked in Home Health for Torrance Memorial for 6 years now, prior to this I worked in hospice, and palliative brings the best of both programs together: symptom management, emphasis on quality of life, honoring patient's wishes for their medical care, strong support for patients and caregivers from a core team, and patients are able to continue to see all of their medical providers.

Hobbies: Trying new foods, traveling.

Other Languages Spoken: Spanish


Vivian Lee, LCSW - Licensed Clinical Social Worker

Vivian LeeSites: Home-Based

Specialization:

  • Certified Employee Assistance Professional

Education:

  • Bachelor of Arts in Psychology
  • Master of Social Work, University of Southern California

Interest in Palliative Care: My intention is to provide assistance, support and education for individuals and their families who are coping with long term illness.

Hobbies: Enjoying family time, trying new recipes, sewing clothes for my little nephew!

Other Languages Spoken: Spanish


Kelie Tabangay, LCSW - Inpatient Program Coordinator and Licensed Clinical Social Worker

Kelie TabangaySites: Inpatient

Specialization:

  • Certified Grief Recovery Specialist

Education:

  • University of California, Berkeley
  • Master of Social Work, University of Michigan

Interest in Palliative Care: I want to help patients and families relieve some stress as they cope with a serious illness by helping them navigate through the available community resources and providing them with emotional support.

Hobbies: Indoor cycling and binge-watching Friends.

Other Languages Spoken: Conversational Mandarin


Eva Mendenhall - Intake Coordinator and Licensed Vocational Nurse

Eva MendenhallSites: Home-Based

Specialization: 

  • Licensed Vocational Nurse

Education:

  • LVN Homestead School
  • Industrial Engineering, Saltillo, Mexico

Interest in Palliative Care: Somehow God put me in this position where we can help patients and families. Palliative is a very hard decision and that is why we are here to help you navigate to this process. Working as a Team we give support to families and patients physical, emotional and spiritual. Sometimes we are listeners, others we give advice, but we are always there if our patients or families need us.

Hobbies: All my family lives in Mexico so I LOVE visiting them every time I get a chance. Walking my baby Sammy-chihuahua. Love traveling with my husband to different countries and know different cultures and try new yummy foods and/or just going out of my house to enjoy a beautiful sunset at the beach, desert, lakes, anywhere. Love boating, water skiing, casinos.

Other Languages Spoken: Spanish

Reverend Jan Lee - Chaplain and Spiritual Care Provider

Reverend Jan LeeSites: Inpatient

Specialization:

  • Ordained minister from the American Baptist Churches of the USA (ABCUSA)
  • Provisional certification with the Association of Professional Chaplains

Education:

  • Bachelor of Arts, University of California, Santa Cruz
  • Masters of Divinity from Fuller Theological Seminary

Interest in Palliative Care: I belong to and practice the Christian faith, but love and serve people of all backgrounds, faiths and traditions. My interest with Palliative Care stems out of my background working as a hospice chaplain and realizing how little I know or understand about this area of patient care. I’m eager and curious to learn from and collaborate with the team here at Torrance Memorial.

Hobbies: My hobbies include learning to sing and play songs on my ukulele, watching my son’s basketball games, and reading old books I never finished.

Other Languages Spoken: Conversational Spanish

Contact Our Palliative Care Team

310-784-4880

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