Dr. Pensak received her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from University of Rhode Island and completed her APA accredited internship and specialty training in behavioral medicine at Yale School of Medicine. She completed a postdoctoral fellowship at Massachusetts General Hospital/ Harvard Medical School in psychiatric oncology and an NIH T32 fellowship at the University of Colorado, Anschutz Medical Center in Aging and Palliative Care. As a Harvard and Yale-trained Clinical Psychologist, Dr. Pensak provides empirically-based treatment that is uniquely tailored to meet the needs of each client.
Prior to moving into full-time private practice, Dr. Pensak was the Director of Psycho-Oncology at Jersey Shore University Medical Center (JSUMC), Hope Tower. At JSUMC, she supervised and taught psychiatry residents how to provide Cognitive Behavioral Therapy to their patients. In addition, she directed the psychosocial oncology service, conducted research, and provided direct clinical services to patients with cancer. Prior to JSUMC, she was Assistant Scientist at Hackensack University Medical Center/John Theurer Cancer Center and Assistant Professor of Oncology at Georgetown University Medical Center. Prior to that, she was Assistant Professor at the University of Colorado School of Medicine in the Division of General Internal Medicine, Department of Medicine. She was a Career Development Award recipient from the National Palliative Care Research Center (NPCRC) for which she conducted technological intervention development and dissemination research for caregivers of patients with advanced illness. As a 2016 NPCRC Career Development Award grantee, she conducted a pilot randomized controlled trial of a mobilized intervention to help caregivers manage distress and to enhance intimacy.
Currently, Dr. Pensak specializes in treating postpartum mental health conditions, anxiety, OCD, depression, sexual dysfunction, and symptoms and side effects associated with medical issues (e.g., cancer, chronic medical conditions). Her new book on the power of the postpartum brain, published by Norton, will be released May 2024.
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