The National Board of Osteopathic Medical Examiners Announces 2021 Examination Contributor Award Winners
January 4, 2022
PHILADELPHIA, PA—The National Board of Osteopathic Medical Examiners (NBOME), an independent, not-for-profit organization that provides competency assessments for osteopathic medical licensure and related health care professions, is pleased to recognize the 2021 Item Writer and Case Author of the Year award winners from its distinguished National Faculty. Throughout the year, this group of individuals graciously volunteered their time and expertise to contribute to the COMLEX-USA and COMAT examination programs.
Each year, the NBOME selects the best-in-class item writers and case authors from a large group of contributors whose work supports our mission to protect the public through osteopathic competency assessment. Congratulations to these esteemed awardees for their exemplary commitment to producing valid and high-quality exam content.
COMLEX-USA Level 1 Item Writer of the Year
Kristie Grove Bridges, PhD
Dr. Bridges is a professor and chair of the biomedical sciences department at the West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine. She has been a member of the National Faculty since 2014 and has contributed considerable time to the COMLEX-USA Level 1 examination.
COMLEX-USA Level 2-CE Item Writer of the Year
Megan Thomas, DO
Dr. Thomas is an internist and pediatrician at the Community Health Center of the New River Valley, a FQHC in Christiansburg, Va. She also supervises residents in the Internal Medicine Continuity Clinic at LewisGale Hospital Montgomery in Blacksburg, Va. She has been a contributor across COMLEX-USA as well as the Point-of-Care Knowledge, Education, and Testing (POCKET) workgroup.
COMLEX-USA Level 3 Item Writer of the Year
Helga V. Toriello, PhD
Dr. Toriello is a professor at the Michigan State University College of Human Medicine with a specialty in genetics. She has been a member of the National Faculty for eight years and has invested a considerable amount of time into the COMLEX-USA Level 3 examination.
Clinical Decision-Making (CDM) Case Writer of the Year
Brett S. Stecker, DO
Dr. Stecker is a primary care physician with the Steward Medical Group in Raynham, Massachusetts. He has been involved with the COMLEX-USA Level 3 for six years, serving on the Clinical Decision Making Subcommittee as well as Vice Chair of the COMLEX-USA Level 3 Advisory Committee.
Osteopathic Principles and Practice (OPP) Item Writer of the Year
Catherine M. Fusco, DO
Dr. Fusco is a board-certified family medicine and osteopathic neuromusculoskeletal medicine physician at Suburban Community Hospital’s Medical Group in Norristown, Pa., and is a clinical faculty member in the Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine department at Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine. She previously assisted with osteopathic manipulative treatment standard setting for the COMLEX-USA Level 2-PE.
Preventive Medicine and Health Promotion (PHMP) Item Writer of the Year:
Jason T. Eberl, PhD
Dr. Eberl is a professor of health care ethics and philosophy and the director of the Albert Gnaegi Center for Health Care Ethic at Saint Louis University. He has contributed to the NBOME since 2015, assisting with standard setting for the humanistic domain of the COMLEX-USA Level 2-PE.
COMAT Clinical Item Writer of the Year
Rita Malhotra, DO
Dr. Malhotra is a physician actively practicing medicine and surgery, founder of the national telemedicine platform DrRitaM.com, and an instructor at New York Institute of Technology College of Osteopathic Medicine-Old Westbury. She is a significant contributor to COMAT Clinical and is the first surgeon to receive this award.
COMAT Foundational Biomedical Sciences Item Writer of the Year
Amber Eade, PhD
Dr. Eade is an assistant professor of biology at Slippery Rock University. She has been involved with the NBOME since 2013, serving as an examination contributor for COMLEX-USA Level 1 and 2-CE and COMAT FBS, participating in activities from item writing to item and blueprint review.