Huda Y. Alsheikh, MD, FAAP
Pediatrician since 1994
Worldwide care: Dr. Alsheikh is a hardworking physician with a goal to keep her patients healthy and happy. Her education and experience spans the globe. She was born in Baghdad, Iraq, and she studied in Bucharest, Romania. Her residency was at Jersey City Medical Center, and she also completed a fellowship training at Nassau County Medical Center in New York. Dr. Alsheikh is bilingual, providing care for her patients in Arabic as well as English.
She owned a private practice for 25 years in New Jersey, and now, Dr. Alsheik practices here in San Diego. Her other roles include those of wife and mother. As a doctor, she aims to provide undivided attention to her patients and their needs.
Wise words: “Kids are the most valuable treasure and investment in life,” Dr. Alsheikh explains. She advises: “They also happen to be great teachers. Listen to their worries and issues, and coach them always.” Dr. Alsheikh believes the sharing of family wisdom is essential in all areas of life, including health, education, and social matters. In her interactions with patients, Dr. Alsheikh enjoys giving them the time to explain any issues or concerns. Her personal, focused care is a true benefit for her patients.
Corrie Clay, MD, FAAP
“My children lend me perspective as a physician.”
Dr. Clay has been a board-certified pediatrician since 2006, and joined La Mesa Pediatrics in 2012. Originally from Virginia, her education has let her traverse the U.S.; after attending college at University of Illinois-Urbana-Champaign, she went on to graduate from Vanderbilt University of Medicine in Nashville, Tennessee, finally completing her pediatrics residency at UC San Diego. She is a Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics.
Dr. Clay is particularly interested in adolescent medicine, childhood obesity, research, asthma and allergies, and disease prevention. When she’s not practicing medicine, Dr. Clay enjoys music and singing, reading, hiking, and leading her daughter’s Girl Scout troop. She has two children, who keep her on her toes, and up on her Disney soundtracks.
Rachel Gianfortune, MD, FAAP
“I strive to provide high quality, evidence based care that focuses on educating and empowering patients ”
Dr Rachel Gianfortune practiced pediatrics in East County for over a decade before joining La Mesa Pediatrics in 2018. A board certified Pediatrician and an Assistant Clinical Professor in the Department of Pediatrics at UCSD, she very much enjoys interacting with and educating children and their family.
Originally from the Chicagoland area, she attended college at the Massachuesettes Institute of Technology before returning home to study medicine at the University of Chicago. She finished her training locally, completing a pediatrics residency at UC San Diego.
Dr G has special interests in adolescent medicine, particularly mental health, reproductive health and sports medicine, as well as working with transgender youth. She strives to provide high quality, evidence based care that focuses on educating and empowering patients and family by implementing a joint plan of care.
When she is not taking care of patients, she enjoys hanging out and being active outdoors with her husband and their 2 dogs, obsessing over the Chicago Blackhawks, reading, and traveling.
Michael Imus, MD, FAAP
“My hope is that parents will consider me as a part of the family as their children grow up”
Dr. Imus is a board-certified pediatrician who is extremely popular with our kids. He makes it a point to ensure his young patients feel comfortable during visits, and strives to create a warm environment where families can be sure that all their concerns are addressed.
A San Diego native, Dr. Imus started his education locally, graduating in Biochemistry from the University of California, San Diego. He then went on to study medicine at the University of Illinois College of Medicine, followed by a pediatrics residency at Loma Linda University Medical Center.
In his spare time, Dr. Imus enjoys watching movies, attending sporting events and concerts, and discovering new types of food around San Diego, especially desserts.
Recommended resource: https://healthychildren.org - A parenting website created by pediatricians with recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics
Kyrra Moffatt, DO, FAAP
“A busy mom of two, I relate to parents’ experiences and concerns, and provide care focused on optimizing each child’s potential.”
Dr. Moffatt is a board-certified pediatrician who joined La Mesa Pediatrics in 2015, returning home to San Diego after 8 years on staff at Loma Linda University Children’s Hospital. Dr. Moffatt’s roots in teaching lead to a passion for pediatrics and preventative health. Prior to her medical tenure, Dr. Moffatt taught high-school math and science at the prestigious Francis Parker School, as well local public elementary Spanish language programs. She graduated medical school from Western University –COMP, where she also completed a pre-doctoral fellowship in osteopathic manipulative medicine, which includes additional neuro-musculoskeletal training and emphasizes a whole-person approach to health and wellness. She then completed her pediatric training and served as Pediatric Chief Resident at Loma Linda Children’s Hospital, where she was recognized for exemplary patient care, outstanding work ethic and patient advocacy - all skills she brings to her practice with us.
Dr. Moffatt is a trusted and passionate advocate for maternal child health, lactation and new parent support, positive parenting, and more. Over the past two decades, Dr. Moffatt has travelled around the world on medical missions, integrating her Spanish and medical training in clinics in Mexico and Costa Rica, and also volunteering in India, Guam and Uganda. She has real “mom” experience, allowing her to relate to the needs of families as she shares both medical expertise and tips on everything from the trends of babywearing and cloth diapering to car seats and simple homemade baby food. Dr. Moffatt strives to not only connect with each child but also serve as a compassionate and informative resource for parents.
Rina Ronquillo, MD, FAAP
“I aim to empower and educate parents, a partner in promoting optimal health and well-being for your child.”
Dr. Ronquillo is a board-certified pediatrician who joined La Mesa Pediatrics in 2017 after a decade of distinguished service in the La Mesa pediatric community.
A graduate of University of Santo Tomas in the Philippines, Dr. Ronquillo completed her pediatrics residency at Nassau University Medical Center in New York. Within her practice, she takes a special interest in asthma/allergies, childhood obesity and child development.
Dr. Ronquillo excels at building relationships with the families we serve. She called two countries and five different states home by the time she was eight, which fostered her gift of building relationships with anyone, anywhere. Today, she delivers the highest quality medical care with the utmost compassion and respect to all patients. A mother to three young children, she empathizes with parents’ emotions and perspectives. In her downtime, Dr. Ronquillo enjoys being a soccer mom, biking, bowling, and keeping her love of 80s music alive. She is fluent in Filipino/Tagalog.
Recommended resources: choosemyplate.gov and Toddler 411: Clear Answers and Smart Advice for Your Toddler by D. Fields & A. Brown, MD
Richard Short, MD, FAAP
“I like to treat each patient as if he or she were a family member.”
Dr. Short is one of San Diego’s most adored pediatricians and has had the pleasure of being in practice long enough to care for his former patients’ children! A board-certified pediatrician and professor at UCSD School of Medicine, he has extensive experience in both small practices and large multi-specialty groups. He began private practice in 1980 in Oregon, leaving after a few years to join La Mesa Pediatrics in 1992. A graduate of California Institute of Technology and UC San Diego Medical School, Dr. Short completed his residency at UC Irvine, where he was Chief Resident (’79-80). He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics, and a member of the San Diego County Medical Society and California Medical Association.
He speaks fluent Spanish. When not practicing medicine, he ventures outside. A lifelong athlete, he has climbed Mt. Whitney 21 times! Dr. Short has two grown children of his own, and four grandchildren.
Recommended resource: "Caring for Your Baby & Young Child", an AAP publication
Philip Szold, MD
In Memoriam, Founder of La Mesa Pediatrics.
Dr. Szold was a young Lt. Commander at the San Diego Naval Regional Medical Center, just finishing up his tour of duty, when he opened a small solo pediatric office in La Mesa in 1977. Over the next 40 years, La Mesa Pediatrics grew to a practice of 5 doctors and 3 nurse practitioners. The children, parents and medical community of San Diego's East County provided the ideal atmosphere for La Mesa Pediatrics growth and success. Even after his retirement from patient care, he remained involved as the owner of the practice, and was often lovingly greeted in the community by former patients.
Dr. Szold always balanced his dedication to patient care with that to his family, including his three children and four granddaughters, who all live in the San Diego area. Dr. Szold and his wife traveled extensively together and took every opportunity to give back to the community through volunteer services. He was a volunteer parenting instructor at various schools and as a Board member of the East County Boys and Girls Club. He was proud to say that faith was the foundation of his life.
We continue forward honoring Dr. Szold’s memory and his mission to provide exceptional pediatric care to La Mesa children.