Memorial Sloan Kettering pediatric oncologist Ira Dunkel

Ira J. Dunkel, MD

Pediatric Hematologist-Oncologist

My Role at MSK

Areas of Expertise

My Specialties

  • Brain Tumors
  • Retinoblastoma

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About Me

What I Do at MSK
  • Attending Pediatrician
Get To Know Me

I am a pediatric oncologist on the MSK Kids team who specializes in caring for children, teenagers, and young adults with brain and eye tumors, including medulloblastoma (the most common cancerous brain tumor in children) and retinoblastoma (a rare eye tumor in children). I also treat children and teenagers with melanoma and children and adults with a rare white blood cell disorder called Langerhans cell histiocytosis.

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In my clinical research on brain tumors, my colleagues and I are seeking to develop more-effective therapies with fewer and less severe side effects. Much of this work involves clinical trials to evaluate new drugs for difficult to treat tumors, such as diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma, glioblastoma, recurrent medulloblastoma, and recurrent ependymoma.

I am also working to develop new treatments for retinoblastoma. These include the use of intensive therapy for children whose retinoblastoma has spread outside the eye and local chemotherapy for those with advanced cancer within the eye.

Nationally, I am chair of the Pediatric Brain Tumor Consortium, a National Cancer Institute–sponsored clinical trials group. I am a member of the Children’s Oncology Group’s Rare Tumors (Retinoblastoma) Committee and Brain Tumor Committee, and I serve as the principal investigator for national clinical trials addressing these tumors. I am also a member of the National Cancer Institute’s Brain Malignancy Steering Committee and a special government employee for the US Food and Drug Administration’s Oncologic Drugs Advisory Committee.

In addition to patient care and research, I work closely with young doctors who are training in pediatric oncology to help them learn how best to identify the individual needs of patients and to care for children with cancer.

It is very rewarding to work with patients and their families. I tailor their care to their needs and explain the treatment options to them their treatment options, guiding them in complex decision-making or exploring various alternatives. At MSK, our goal is to cure the cancer while leaving the patient with as normal a life as possible.

My Role at MSK

A pediatric hematologist-oncologist is a doctor who treats cancers of the blood in children and adolescents. This doctor is a hematologist (HEE-muh-TAH-loh-jist) who diagnoses and treats blood disorders. They also are an oncologist (cancer doctor).

Areas of Expertise

My Specialties

  • Brain Tumors
  • Retinoblastoma
Education & Honors

Education

  • MD, Duke University

Residencies

  • Pediatrics - Duke University

Awards and Honors

  • Castle Connolly: America’s Top Doctor (2024)
  • Top Doctors New York Metro Area, Castle Connolly (2023)
  • Castle Connolly: America's Top Doctors (2023)
  • Castle Connolly: New York Magazine Top Doctors (2005-2020)
  • Achievement Award, American Academy of Ophthalmology (2012)
  • Paul Meyers Teaching Award, Department of Pediatrics, Memorial Sloan Kettering (2015)

Fellowships

  • Pediatric Infectious Disease - Duke University/Muhimbili Medical Center
  • Pediatric Hematology/Oncology - Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

Board Certifications

  • Pediatric Hematology-Oncology

Insurance Information

Understanding your insurance options is an important part of managing your cancer care. We have relationships with many common healthcare providers and plans.

Aetna

In Network Coverage Type
HMO, EPO PPO, POS, Transplant

Aetna Medicare Advantage (MTA retirees only)

In Network Coverage Type
PPO

Blue Cross Blue Shield Federal Employee Program

In Network Coverage Type
HMO, PPO

Blue Cross Blue Shield New York

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, POS, EPO, HMO

Blue Cross Blue Shield states outside of NY/NJ

In Network Coverage Type
HMO, EPO PPO, POS

Blue Cross Health Plus

In Network Coverage Type
HMO

Carrum Health

In Network Coverage Type
Supplemental

Cigna

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, POS, HMO

MSK has a tentative agreement with Cigna to continue coverage in 2024.

Connecticare

In Network Coverage Type
POS, EPO, HMO

Emblem

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, POS, EPO, HMO

Emblem Essential

In Network Coverage Type
HMO

Emblem Medicare Advantage

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, HMO

Empire Blue Cross Medicare Advantage

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, HMO, DSN

Empire Essential

In Network Coverage Type
HMO

Empire Plan / NYSHIP (Blue Cross/UnitedHealthcare split plan)

In Network Coverage Type
PPO

Fidelis

In Network Coverage Type
HMO, EPO

Fidelis Managed Medicaid & HARP

In Network Coverage Type
HMO

Fidelis Medicare Advantage

In Network Coverage Type
HMO

First Health

In Network Coverage Type
PPO

Healthfirst

In Network Coverage Type
EPO, HMO, PPO, POS

Healthfirst Managed Medicaid

In Network Coverage Type
HMO

Healthfirst Medicare Advantage

In Network Coverage Type
HMO, PPO

Healthsmart

In Network Coverage Type
PPO EPO

Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield New Jersey (HMO)

In Network Coverage Type
HMO

Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield New Jersey (PPO)

In Network Coverage Type
PPO

Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield New Jersey Omnia Tier I (EPO)

In Network Coverage Type
EPO

Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield New Jersey Omnia Tier II (EPO)

In Network Coverage Type
EPO

Horizon Medicare Advantage

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, HMO

Husky CT Medicaid

In Network Coverage Type
State Government

Magnacare

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, POS, EPO

Straight NJ Medicaid

In Network Coverage Type
State Government

Straight NY Medicaid

In Network Coverage Type
State Government

Medicare Part A&B (traditional Medicare)

In Network Coverage Type
Federal Government

Multiplan/Beech Street/PHCS

In Network Coverage Type
Supplemental

MVP

In Network Coverage Type
PPO/OAP

Non-Participating Plans with Out of Network Benefits

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, POS, EPO, HMO

NYC Medicare Advantage Plus for City Employees

In Network Coverage Type
TBD

Oscar

In Network Coverage Type
HMO/EPO

Oxford

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, EPO

World Trade Center Health Program (WTC)

In Network Coverage Type
State Government

Qualcare

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, POS, HMO

Tricare

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, HMO

UMR

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, POS

United Healthcare

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, POS, HMO

Don't see your carrier or plan? We can help you understand your coverage.

If you don't have health insurance or are worried that your care may not be fully covered, our financial assistance programs may be able to help.

If you have questions about insurance, call us at 646-497-9176.

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Current Patients

Request an appointment by logging on to MyMSK or calling your doctor’s office. If you aren’t registered for MyMSK, call 646-227-2593 for your Enrollment ID.

Contact and Location

Dr. Dunkel sees patients at one location.

Office Phone
Location
New York, NY
1275 York Avenue New York NY 10065

Looking to see a doctor at a different location? See all MSK locations.

Colleagues

Doctors at Memorial Sloan Kettering work as teams, with specialists from all different areas. This allows us to consider all your needs together, and to give you the best possible care.

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Clinical Trials

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Smiling doctors in the lab
Find a Clinical Trial for You

Memorial Sloan Kettering's doctors and scientists are constantly developing new treatments for cancer. MSK is typically running hundreds of clinical trials at a given time.

You may be able to participate in a clinical trial even if you are new to MSK. Search our online directory to find trial information and see more about who can participate.

Search clinical trials

Research and Publications

Publications on PubMed

Visit PubMed for a full listing of Dr. Dunkel’s journal articles. Pubmed is an online index of research papers and other articles from the US National Library of Medicine and the National Institutes of Health.

See all on PubMed

Disclosures

Doctors and faculty members often work with pharmaceutical, device, biotechnology, and life sciences companies, and other organizations outside of MSK, to find safe and effective cancer treatments, to improve patient care, and to educate the health care community.

MSK requires doctors and faculty members to report (“disclose”) the relationships and financial interests they have with external entities. As a commitment to transparency with our community, we make that information available to the public.

Ira J. Dunkel discloses the following relationships and financial interests:

  • American Board of Pediatrics
    Professional Services and Activities
  • AstraZeneca
    Professional Services and Activities
  • Bridge To A Cure Foundation
    Professional Services and Activities (Uncompensated)
  • Bristol-Myers Squibb
    Professional Services and Activities
  • GlaxoSmithKline
    Professional Services and Activities
  • Pyramid Biosciences, Inc.
    Professional Services and Activities
  • The Kamen Brain Tumor Foundation
    Professional Services and Activities (Uncompensated)

If you’re a patient at MSK and would like more information about your doctor’s external relationships, please talk with your doctor.

The information published here is for a specific annual disclosure period. There may be differences between information on this and other public sites as a result of different reporting periods and/or the various ways relationships and financial interests are categorized by organizations that publish such data.


This page and data include information for a specific MSK annual disclosure period (January 1, 2022 through disclosure submission in spring 2023). This data reflects interests that may or may not still exist. This data is updated annually.

Learn more about MSK’s COI policies here. For questions regarding MSK’s COI-related policies and procedures, email MSK’s Compliance Office at [email protected].


View all disclosures