About Our Team

Our Physicians 

The clinic’s multidisciplinary team includes:

Medical Oncologist

Ariel Birnbaum, MD, is a medical oncologist at Rhode Island Hospital. He received his medical degree from the Medical College of Ohio, completed his residency training at the University of Minnesota hospitals, and completed his fellowship in hematology/oncology at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. His clinical interests include combined modality treatment for lung cancer and end of life care. He is a member of the American Society of Clinical oncology and a participant in the Brown University Oncology Group.

Director, Respiratory Intermediate Care Unit at Rhode Island Hospital, Associate Director, Cystic Fibrosis Adult Program

Michael Blundin, MD specializes in pulmonary and critical care medicine. He is the director of the respiratory intermediate care unit at Rhode Island Hospital, associate director of the cystic fibrosis adult program, and team member in the hospital's Interventional Pulmonary Program. He graduated from The Pennsylvania State College of Medicine and completed his residency and pulmonary and critical care fellowship at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University.

Dr. Blundin has a special interest in lung cancer, bronchoscopy and airways disease. He is board certified in internal medicine, pulmonary diseases, and critical care medicine, and is a member of the American College of Chest Physicians.

Clinical Director, Radiation Oncology

Thomas DiPetrillo, MD, is clinical director of radiation oncology at Rhode Island and The Miriam hospitals. He is a leading authority on a variety of radiation treatments for cancer, including intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) and high dose rate (HDR) brachytherapy. DiPetrillo is a pioneer in the use of IMRT, a noninvasive procedure that allows physicians to pinpoint delivery of radiation therapy, resulting in better tumor control with less toxicity. He is also an expert in the use of HDR brachytherapy, a treatment that involves the use of a robotic arm to deliver a radioactive “seed” to a tumor. 

DiPetrillo is a graduate of the University of Vermont College of Medicine and completed his residency at New England Medical Center (now Tufts Medical Center). He is an associate professor of radiation oncology at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University, and an adjunct associate professor at Tufts University School of Medicine.

Director, Thoracic Radiology, Rhode Island Hospital

Terrance T. Healey, MD, director of thoracic radiology at Rhode Island Hospital, received a medical degree from the combined Dartmouth-Brown program. He completed his residency at Rhode Island Hospital and The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University, and thoracic radiology fellowship at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School. He is an assistant professor of diagnostic imaging at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. Healey’s area of expertise involves using image-guided thermal ablation to treat lung tumors.

Director of Stereotactic Radiosurgery

Jaroslaw T. Hepel, MD, serves as director of stereotactic radiosurgery at Rhode Island Hospital and as an assistant professor at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. He also serves as associate director of the Tufts-Affiliated Hospitals Residency Training Program in Radiation Oncology. He is board certified in radiation oncology by the American Board of Radiology. Hepel received his undergraduate degree at Cornell University and earned his medical degree at the University of Rochester. He completed internal medicine residency at the University of California Irvine Medical Center, and then went on to complete residency in the specialty of radiation oncology at Tufts Medical Center in Boston, MA. 

Hepel has broad experience and knowledge, and is active in caring for patients with a wide range of malignant diseases. However, he holds a particular interest and clinical expertise in the treatment of breast cancer and in stereotactic radiosurgery/radiotherapy for diseases involving the lung, brain, spine, liver and other sites. He is not only very active in the clinic but also has a keen academic interest in these areas. He has published several book chapters and multiple scientific papers, and has regularly presented his work at national meetings. Through his academic work, he strives to improve treatment outcomes for patients not only in regard to achieving higher cure rates but also to minimizing treatment side effects.

Director, Lifespan Cancer Institute Thoracic Multidisciplinary Clinic

Humera Khurshid, MD, is the director of the Lifespan Cancer Institute’s Thoracic Multidisciplinary Clinic, where she sees patients and collaborates with a team of specialists to coordinate patient care for newly diagnosed lung cancer patients. She is a medical oncologist with a special interest in geriatric oncology and the care of older lung cancer patients. She is also an assistant professor at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University.

Douglas Martin, MD, specializes in pulmonary diseases and critical care medicine in the Interventional Pulmonary Program at Rhode Island Hospital. He graduated from The University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry and then completed his residency and pulmonary and critical care fellowship at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. Martin has a special interest in lung cancer, bronchoscopy and interventional pulmonary procedures. He is board certified in internal medicine, pulmonary diseases, and critical care medicine. He is a member of The American Thoracic Society and The American College of Chest Physicians.

Director, Division of Thoracic Surgery

Thomas Ng, MD, is a thoracic surgeon at Rhode Island Hospital and is an associate professor of surgery at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. Ng received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Toronto and his medical degree from Queen’s University School of Medicine in Kingston, Canada. He completed his residency in general surgery at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University, a fellowship in critical care medicine at the University of Toronto and a fellowship in thoracic surgery at the University of Ottawa. Ng is active in a number of societies, including the American College of Surgeons, Canadian Association of Thoracic Surgeons, Cancer and Leukemia Group B, New England Surgical Society, Rhode Island Medical Society, Royal College of Surgeons of Canada, Society of Surgical Oncology and Society of Thoracic Surgeons.

Medical Oncologist and Palliative Care Specialist

Angela Taber, MD, is a palliative care specialist and medical oncologist at the Lifespan Cancer Institute at Rhode Island, The Miriam, and Newport hospitals. She has a special interest in issues involving patient quality of life, improving doctor-patient communication, and palliative care for patients with lung cancer. She is board certified in palliative care, and is an active participant in the Brown University Oncology Group, where she is involved in the development of clinical research protocols.

Taber earned her medical degree from the University of Massachusetts Medical School in Worcester, Massachusetts, and completed her residency and hematology-oncology fellowship at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island. She is a member of the American Society of Clinical Oncology and the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine, and has been honored nationally for outstanding compassion and cancer care by the American Cancer Society. She is also the American Cancer Society’s designee to the Palliative Care and Quality of Life Interdisciplinary Advisory Council for the state of Rhode Island.

Additional Members of Our Care Team: 

Jennifer Collins, NP

Jennifer Collins, NP is a nurse practitioner who works closely with the Thoracic Multidisciplinary Clinic (MDC) team. She monitors and treats patients with chemotherapy, targeted and/or hormonal therapy, and provides supportive care and symptom management during treatment. She is a graduate of Providence College and Yale University.

Amy Doorley, MSN, RNP
Nurse Practitioner

Amy Doorley, MSN, RNP is a certified nurse practitioner who has expertise in primary care, interventional radiology and in the assessment, education and management of patients with gastrointestinal cancers. Doorley is also a clinical navigator who helps guide patients through the health care system and the course of their treatment in multiple ways, including the coordination of services, facilitation of communication with health care professionals, arrangement of interpreters and transportation, assistance with insurance and financial questions, education, and emotional support.

Research Scientist

Ernestine Jennings, PhD provides individual treatment focused on activating health behavior change and coping with chronic illness. In addition, she leads weight management groups in The Miriam Hospital Weight Management Program. Dr. Jennings' research has focused on using behavioral interventions to improve physical and mental health in both apparently healthy and known disease populations. She is specifically interested in developing smoking cessation interventions for women. She is a research mentor within the Brown University Clinical Psychology Residency.

Contact Dr. Jennings

Email:  EJennings1@Lifespan.org

Derek Tessier, MSN, RNP
Nurse Practitioner

Derek Tessier, MSN, RNP is a nurse practitioner in the diagnostic imaging department at Rhode Island Hospital, and clinical manager of the image-guided tumor ablation services. Tessier received a master’s degree from the University of Rhode Island with a specialization as a family nurse practitioner. His expertise is in primary care and in the assessment, education and management of patients undergoing tumor ablation procedures.

David Tracey, PA-C 
Physician Assistant

David Tracey, PA-C is a physician assistant who works closely with the Thoracic Multidisciplinary Clinic (MDC) team. He evaluates and treats patients receiving chemotherapy, targeted and/or hormonal therapy. He also works to identify and manage treatment-related side effects, and supports patients throughout their care. He is a graduate of Stonehill College and Philadelphia University.

Robin Turnbull, RN
Nurse Navigator

Robin Turnbull, RN is a nurse navigator who works closely with patients at the Thoracic Multidisciplinary Clinic (MDC). She assists with coordination of care and provides support to patients and families facing the challenges of a cancer diagnosis. She is a graduate of the Community College of Rhode Island.