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Shekinah Elmore      

Oncologist; Dedicated to Pursuing Equity & Empathy in Oncology Care

Shekinah Elmore, MD, MPH is an Assistant Professor, researcher, and radiation oncologist at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill who is dedicated to pursuing equity and empathy in oncology care. She is a cancer survivor with experience treading the line between patient and provider and has spoken about this at TEDMED 2020 and written in Elemental, the Journal of the American Medical Association, and the New England Journal of Medicine, focusing on themes of embracing compassionate care and coping with uncertainty. She earned a master’s in public health from the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University and worked for the International Center for AIDS Care and Treatment Programs in sub-Saharan Africa prior to medical school.

During her time at Harvard Medical School, she received a Fulbright grant to work with Partners in Health in Rwanda to explore the patient experience of cancer care. While completing the Harvard Radiation Oncology Residency Program, she focused on understanding and improving radiotherapy access in resource-limited settings and promoting pathways for resident involvement in improving global radiotherapy. She has published on these themes in the Journal of Global Oncology and the International Journal of Radiation Oncology, Biology, and Physics. She lives in Chapel Hill, NC with her husband, Adam Cluff, and their toddler, William Isaiah.


She’s worn both a hospital gown and a white coat. Now she wants to change how doctors perceive their patients
Elmore is a lot of things: She is both a cancer doctor and a “cancer person” — she’s not keen on the word “survivor.” Now 36 and a fourth-year resident in the Harvard Radiation Oncology Program, Elmore has Li-Fraumeni syndrome, a genetic disorder that puts her at high risk for a range of cancers.

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