Welcome to the HCA Houston Residency Program. We are a newly ACGME accredited residency program accepting 10 residents per year in our 3 year Family Medicine (FM) Residency Program. I am excited to have you join us in touring our program and look forward to welcoming you as part of our HCA family.
HCA (Hospital Corporation of America) is currently the largest provider of graduate medical education (GME) in the United States. HCA facilities include nearly 180 hospitals located throughout the USA and UK. HCA West Houston Medical Center (WHMC) is located in Houston, Texas – the 4th largest city in the United States. Houston is home to a diverse culture, several sports teams, excellent theater/arts, unparalleled world class cuisine, and of course that Texas hospitality.
Our residency program boasts a relationship with Hope Clinic (Federal qualified health center) for outpatient continuity clinic and an academic relationship with the University of Houston, College of Medicine. Hope clinic provides care to over 13,000 patients a year, regardless of their ability to pay. Hope clinic also serves a multilingual/multinational patient clientele with staff and providers caring for patients in over 14 languages. The clinic has a multidisciplinary approach and provides comprehensive health care for our patients. As a teaching site, Hope clinic will no doubt prepare you for a career in Family Medicine. The University of Houston is a Tier 1 University with multiple recognitions in several disciplines, research, community outreach/leadership, and innovation.
Our program focuses on evidence based medicine, cost efficient healthcare, a variety of procedures, and a culture of teaching along with scholarly activity. We are fortunate to have several experienced physicians with a multitude of interests in our faculty group. Our residents benefit from being an unopposed medical residency at the hospital. Moreover, our residents have an essentially 1:1 ratio with the attendings while on specialty rotations. Based on our setup, the residents get exposed to the private practice side during hospital and specialty rotations while getting the volume and pathology that comes with a continuity clinic housed in a community health center with an FQHC status. Our residency has built in formal rotations for practice management, advocacy, as well as procedures. We not only prepare our residents to be physicians, but also successful leaders who will no doubt pave and change the future of medicine while significantly contributing to our community. While in training, we are committed to the wellness and safety of our housestaff and have a myriad of programs set in place to ensure the health and happiness of our residents. Our residents will be deeply embedded in every aspect of the hospital and clinic system as well as the community. Thru the partnerships, we are able to offer residents access to virtually every journal, database, and textbook along with needed supplies such as a HIPAA compliant cell phone and laptop to ensure efficient workflows. Our commitment to resident education is evident in the robust didactic, reading, and board review curriculum that are headed by the faculty and program director.
As you look to the next journey in your life and career, I urge you to spend time with us and realize that you are finally home.
Anush Pillai, DO
HCA Houston Healthcare's Family Medicine Residency is a newly ACGME accredited three-year program accepting 10 residents per year.
Our program focuses on evidence based medicine, cost efficient healthcare, a variety of procedures, and a culture of teaching along with scholarly activity.
The Family Medicine program is offered at HCA Houston Healthcare West, a full-service hospital that has been serving the west Houston community for over 30 years with a range of health services. In addition, our residency program boasts a relationship with Hope Clinic, our outpatient continuity clinic, and an academic relationship with the University of Houston, College of Medicine.
Our residents will be deeply embedded in every aspect of the hospital and clinic system as well as the community. Our residency has built-in formal rotations for practice management, advocacy, as well as procedures. While on specialty rotations, our residents have an essentially 1:1 ratio with the attendings. Based on our setup, the residents get exposed to the private practice side during hospital and specialty rotations while getting the volume and pathology that comes with a continuity clinic housed in a community health center with an FQHC status.
We not only prepare our residents to be physicians, but also successful leaders who will no doubt pave and change the future of medicine while significantly contributing to our community.
Family Medicine Residency Program Highlights
Family medicine practice continuity clinic: As a teaching site, Hope Clinic will no doubt prepare you for a career in Family Medicine. Hope Clinic provides care to over 13,000 patients a year, regardless of their ability to pay. Hope clinic also serves a multilingual/multinational patient clientele with staff and providers caring for patients in over 14 languages. The clinic has a multidisciplinary approach and provides comprehensive health care for our patients.
University of Houston academic partnership: Our academic partner, The University of Houston is a Tier 1 University with multiple recognitions in several disciplines, research, community outreach/leadership, and innovation. The HCA Houston Healthcare/University of Houston College of Medicine Consortium offers tailored curricula to make our residents the best practitioners in their respective field. Our wealth of expertise and resources provide residents with a personalized, innovative, evidence-based training; allowing us to champion the practice of medicine for a healthier world.
HCA Healthcare affiliation: Upon completion of an HCA Healthcare residency or fellowship, physician trainees will have received an innovative, high-quality experience and have access to employment opportunities at HCA Healthcare facilities across the country. With more than 200 residency programs and 4,000 residents in training, HCA Healthcare is host to the largest GME network in the country; allowing us to turn residents into practitioners in the communities that we serve.
List of leadership and faculty
Anush Pillai, DO
Dr. Pillai graduated from the University of North Texas, Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine and did his residency at the University of Texas at Houston Medical School, where he served as chief resident. Upon finishing his residency he was recruited to be faculty at a local residency program, where he stayed as faculty for 10+ years. At that program, he was in charge of the didactic curriculum as well as the geriatric/maternity care/inpatient curriculum. He also served as the procedure faculty for the residency program. While at this position, he also was the Academic Vice Chair of the department. Additionally, he was promoted to Associate Professor at Cornell University’s College of Medicine.
During this time, Dr. Pillai, authored numerous peer reviewed articles, case presentations, book chapters, and coauthored 2 of the Case Files series. He has served on state level committees for our academy and serves as a reviewer for several peer reviewed journals. He also has served as a peer reviewer for the NBME (USMLE) and ABFM (FM board) examination questions. Prior to starting this role as program director, he was in private group practice for several years. Dr. Pillai has actively practiced full scope family medicine to include pediatrics, maternity care, inpatient care, adult medicine, and procedures throughout his career.
Dr. Pillai believes that practicing medicine is a privilege and we should strive hard to earn our patient’s trust each day. Compassion, advocacy, education, and conversation are paramount to being a good doctor and clinician. Providing cost effective, evidence based, customized care while involving patients in the decision making process are the values that Dr. Pillai practices and teaches. He feels that our journey as a physician and clinician begins at the end of residency, for this is a field of lifelong learning of professional and personal growth. Dr. Pillai is married and has 2 children. His hobbies include martial arts, basketball, weightlifting, and billiards.
Meer Ahmed, MD
Meer Ahmed, MD: was born in Bangalore, India and obtained his medical degree at Bangalore Medical College. He completed his residency in Family Medicine at UMDNJ Hoboken Medical Center in New Jersey. Dr. Ahmed completed his fellowship in Hospital Medicine at Methodist Hospital in Baytown, TX. He is board certified in Family Medicine as well as Sleep Medicine.
Dr. Ahmed has 13 years of experience in the medical field and has been working as a Hospitalist at HCA Houston Healthcare West since 2013 where he also serves as the Chairman of the Family Medicine Department. Dr. Ahmed has been teaching medical students since 2016. He is also practicing Sleep Medicine and is passionate about utilizing telemedicine to meet patient needs. His medical philosophy consists of treating his patients holistically and to determine the root cause of the patient’s illness. He emphasizes on mental health, which he believes is essential for physical health.
Dr. Ahmed resides in Katy, TX with his wife and 3 children and enjoys spending time with them. He likes to spend his free time cooking, playing cricket, and enjoying nature.
Jean Bombach, MD
Jean Bombach, MD: has had over 20 years of experience and is devoted to caring for patients and being their primary care physician. She was born in El Paso, Texas, graduated Cum Laude from Texas A&M University and went on to graduate from UT Houston Medical School. Throughout most of her life, she had envisioned herself as a “family doctor” so she completed residency in Baytown, TX at the San Jacinto Methodist Family Practice Residency to complete her dream. As she began her career, she also began her family and today is married with 3 amazing children. She loves children so much that at one time she taught science for a year and Sunday school for several years. She finds teaching extremely rewarding and has been teaching medical students, nurse practitioners, and residents for the past 9 years through Baylor College of Medicine, Texas Women’s University, and UTMB Galveston.
She takes pride in delivering top notch quality care to people from around the world and coordinating their care no matter their condition, sex, race or economic status. Though Spanish is not her first language, she became fluent in it so that she can provide better care for the Latino community. She treats many common conditions such as diabetes, hypertension, thyroid disease, depression, heart disease, asthma, allergies, flu, and performs physicals and wellness visits. She also has some special interests. Being a soccer player in her youth, she enjoys sports and is adept in caring for sports injuries. She also enjoys performing basic dermatological procedures. She delights in teaching and believes that teaching students and residents is an essential means of passing on her skills, wisdom, and knowledge to help the next generation. Most importantly, she receives the most gratification from developing personal relationships with her patients and in knowing that they are getting the most excellent care possible.
Carol Gambrill, DO
Carol Gambrill, DO: was born and raised in Anadarko, Oklahoma. After attending medical school at Oklahoma State University College of Osteopathic Medicine in Tulsa, OK, she completed her internship and residency at Oklahoma State University Center for Health Sciences. She is dual Board Certified in Family Medicine and Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine. Dr. Gambrill is committed to providing primary care services to all patients, and is especially passionate about cardiovascular disease risk reduction and the treatment of Type 2 Diabetes, asthma, COPD, and mental health.
Before relocating to Houston, Dr. Gambrill worked in rural Southeastern Oklahoma for 10 years, with a practice spanning inpatient pediatric care, outpatient primary care, training Family Medicine residents, and heading a clinic for underinsured patients. In her free time, Dr. Gambrill enjoys spending time with her husband and two children.
Rajalakshmi Natarajan, MD
Rajalakshmi Natarajan, MD (Raji): received her medical degree from Kilpauk Medical College & Hospital at Chennai, India. She trained in Family Medicine at LSUHSC, New Orleans School of Medicine at Lake Charles, LA, and is board certified by the American Board of Family Medicine.
Her interests include Women’s Health, Preventative medicine, and Weight management. Having lived in the Middle and Far East has helped Dr Natarajan to relate better to the wide variety of patients from different ethnicities at Hope clinic. Dr Raji enjoys spending time with her family and pet dog, gardening, and traveling.
Elizabeth Suniega, MD
Elizabeth Suniega, MD: was raised in Friendly, MD, and graduated Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Maryland prior to being awarded the Health Professions Scholarship and commissioning into the U.S. Army. She graduated from the University of Maryland School of Medicine, and matched into the Martin Army Community Hospital Family Medicine Residency Program at Fort Benning, GA. Afterwards, she served as a full-scope, board-certified Family Medicine physician at both the U.S. Army Garrison (USAG) Humphreys and Yongsan in South Korea. Also, she became a credentialed Sexual Assault Medical Forensic Examiner (SAMFE), and was selected to serve as the only SAMFE physician at the USAG Humphreys for nearly one year. She was later assigned to Fort Gordon, GA, where she served as an assistant faculty physician in the Dwight D. Eisenhower Army Medical Center Family Medicine Residency Program, and plans to transition into the U.S. Army Reserve.
She has an insatiable passion for practicing full-scope and evidence-based Family Medicine, a keen interest in teaching medical students and residents, as well as a love for learning, scholarly activities, and volunteering. Her clinical interests include inpatient medicine and obstetrics, women’s health, sexual trauma, minor procedures, and point-of-care ultrasound. Additionally, she enjoys traveling, driving high-performance vintage Fords, event planning, music, and spending time with family and friends.