James W. Smithy

James W. Smithy, MD, MHS

Melanoma Oncologist & Cellular Therapist

My Role at MSK

Areas of Expertise

My Specialties

  • Melanoma
  • Immunotherapy
  • Cellular Therapy

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About Me

What I Do at MSK
  • Assistant Attending Physician
Get To Know Me

I am a medical oncologist focused exclusively on treating patients with melanoma. I see patients at the Rockefeller Outpatient Pavilion and the David H. Koch Center for Cancer Care at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer (MSK) in Manhattan.

In my clinical practice, I work with an expert team of surgeons, radiation oncologists, nurses, and administrative staff. Together, we aim to provide effective, evidence-based melanoma care tailored to each patient’s unique goals and preferences. In each visit, I prioritize discussing the ways that patients can access innovative treatments. This includes therapies approved for the treatment of melanoma, as well as clinical trials of promising new approaches.

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As a clinical investigator, my research is focused on advancing the next generation of immunotherapies to treat melanoma. I develop and lead clinical trials and collaborate with pathologists and computational biologists to analyze melanoma tissue and better understand how these therapies work. I am currently investigating new combinations of immune checkpoint inhibitors (a type of immunotherapy), including giving checkpoint inhibitors with cancer vaccines. I am also a member of MSK’s Cellular Therapy Service, where our team is investigating adoptive cell therapy with tumor infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) for some people whose melanoma has not responded to other treatments. TIL therapy is an immunotherapy that uses a patient’s immune cells to kill cancer.

Having grown up on Long Island, it is a privilege to take care of people from diverse communities across the New York metropolitan area and beyond. I strive to get to know my patients on a personal level and partner with them to develop treatment plans in which they feel confident.

My Role at MSK

A melanoma oncologist is a cancer doctor with special training in melanoma. This includes superficial spreading, nodular, lentigo maligna, and acral lentiginous melanomas, as well as eye, mucosal, and rare skin melanomas.

A cellular therapy specialist is a doctor with special training in using cell therapies to treat health conditions such as cancer. Therapies can include chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cell therapy.

Areas of Expertise

My Specialties

  • Melanoma
  • Immunotherapy
  • Cellular Therapy
Education & Honors

Education

  • MD, Yale School of Medicine
  • MHS, Yale School of Medicine

Residencies

  • Internal Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital
  • Chief Residency, Brigham and Women's Hospital

Awards and Honors

  • Conquer Cancer Foundation Merit Award, American Society of Clinical Oncology (2023)
  • Seligson Thesis Prize, Yale School of Medicine (2017)
  • Miriam Kathleen Dasey Award, Yale School of Medicine (2017)
  • William R. Belknap Prize, Yale College (2010)
  • John Spangler Nicholas Cup, Yale College (2010)

Fellowships

  • Medical Oncology, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

Board Certifications

  • Medical Oncology
  • Internal Medicine

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.

Make an Appointment

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. Smithy sees patients at two locations.

Office Phone
Location
New York, NY

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.

See all Cellular Therapy Service doctors

See all Melanoma Service doctors

Clinical Trials

Research and Publications

Smithy JW, Moore LM, Pelekanou V, Rehman J, Gaule P, Wong PF, Neumeister VM, Sznol M, Kluger HM, Rimm DL. Nuclear IRF-1 expression as a mechanism to assess “Capability” to express PD-L1 and response to PD-1 therapy in metastatic melanoma. J Immunother Cancer. 2017 Mar 21;5:25. doi: 10.1186/s40425-017-0229-2. PMID: 28331615; PMCID: PMC5359951.

Smithy JW, Blouin A, Diamond LC, Postow M. Ensuring equity in the era of HLA-restricted cancer therapeutics. J Immunother Cancer. 2022 Nov;10(11):e005600. doi: 10.1136/jitc-2022-005600. PMID: 36442912; PMCID: PMC9710357.

Publications on PubMed

Visit PubMed for a full listing of Dr. Smithy’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.

James W. Smithy discloses the following relationships and financial interests:

No disclosures meeting criteria for time period


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].


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