Meet Breast Cancer Surgeon Lisa Sclafani
Lisa M. Sclafani, MD, FACS
Director of Surgical Services, Long Island Regional Network
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Only outpatient providers are included in the survey. Healthcare providers who only work in the hospital or in urgent care are not included in the survey. Pathologists or researchers who do not provide direct care to patients do not have reviews.
New Patient Appointments
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Dr. Sclafani accepts the following list of insurance providers. Select your insurance provider to see more details.
Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with Aetna HMO, POS, and PPO plans. Aetna does not include us in any of the plans you can purchase through the insurance exchanges or through Medicare. Please ask your insurance if you need a one-time referral. MSK has an agreement with the Aetna Transplant Program for all Aetna's commercial products.
Memorial Sloan Kettering is a designated Blue Distinction Center for bone marrow transplant and CAR-T.
We understand that there may be many complexities involved with insurance coverage purchased through the health exchange network of the Affordable Care Act. We’re here to help. If you have questions about how your care will be covered by an insurance provider, or need help navigating a change in coverage, please call us at 646-227-3378; if you are not a resident of New York, you can call us at 866-248-1274. Our team is here to listen to your concerns and assist you in any way we can. We want our care to be as accessible and affordable for as many people as possible.
Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with CIGNA's HMO, POS, and PPO plans. CIGNA does not include us in any of the plans you can buy through the insurance exchanges.
- If you are a New York State resident: Please ask your insurance if you need a one-time referral.
- If you live outside of New York State: Please ask your insurance if you have in-network access to Memorial Sloan Kettering.
Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with EmblemHealth’s PPO, EPO, POS, HMO plans. EmblemHealth includes GHI, HIP, Vytra, and ConnecticCare (in NYS Only). You must bring a referral from your Emblem primary care doctor to your first appointment. In-network participation exceptions include:
- Emblem’s HIP Commercial Millennium, Select Care and Enhanced Care Prime networks is not in-network with Memorial Sloan Kettering.
- Please call Emblem to confirm if your specific plan is in-network.
For information regarding Memorial Sloan Kettering’s participation with Emblem’s Medicare Advantage Plans, please refer to the Medicare & Medicaid page
Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield (Wellpoint) of New York Indemnity, HMO, EPO, PPO, POS and Medicare Advantage plans, with the following exceptions:
- Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield does not include us in any of the plans you can buy through the insurance exchanges.
- Please call Empire BCBS to confirm if your specific plan is in-network with Memorial Sloan Kettering.
Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with HealthFirst’s commercial products; these commercial products are not purchased on the insurance exchanges.
Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with HealthSmart’s Accel, HSPC, and HPO networks.
For our NJ locations, Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with most Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey plans for individuals, families, and small businesses. Horizon members with Blue Card Access (there would be a suitcase logo on the front of the card) may have access to our NY locations. Please call Horizon to confirm if your plan is in-network in NY.
Memorial Sloan Kettering is a designated Center of Excellence by Humana.
Memorial Sloan Kettering is a designated Center of Excellence by Interlink Health Services.
Memorial Sloan Kettering is a designated Center of Excellence by Lifetrac.
Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider for all MagnaCare health plans except those products you can buy through the insurance exchanges.
For information about Medicare and Medicaid, please visit this page
Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with some Multiplan/Beech Street/PHCS plans. Contact your insurance carrier to find out if your plan provides in-network access to Memorial Sloan Kettering.
Memorial Sloan Kettering is a designated Center of Excellence by Multiplan.
If you are covered by more than one insurance plan, you will want to determine your benefits from both plans. First, you need to determine which one is your primary insurance provider by contacting your employee benefits office or your insurance carriers. After you find out which is your primary insurance provider, you should then contact your insurance carrier to determine if you have access to Memorial Sloan Kettering.
Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with some MVP plans. Contact your insurance carrier to find out if your plan provides in-network access to Memorial Sloan Kettering.
Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider for New York State employees who have enrolled in UnitedHealthcare's Cancer Resource Services. If you have the Empire Plan, you should call Cancer Resources Services at 866-936-6002 to verify and enroll in this coverage.
Memorial Sloan Kettering is in-network with Oscar’s Circle Plus Network, a part of its Small Group Broad line that is offered only to select small business groups. Oscar does not include Memorial Sloan Kettering as an in-network provider for any of its individual plans. Please confirm eligibility with your insurance carrier.
Most Blue Cross Blue Shield plans include Memorial Sloan Kettering as an in-network provider. Contact your insurance company to confirm if Memorial Sloan Kettering is in-network.
We have agreements with several insurance companies that may provide additional coverage for cancer patients. These benefit programs include:
- AXA Assistance USA
- Beech Street
- Integrated Health Plans
- National Health Administrators
- National Preferred Provider Network
- UnitedHealthcare's Cancer Resource Services
- United Resource Network
- Veterans Choice Program
Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with Oxford’s Freedom and Liberty plans as well as the Metro Plan (which is only offered to small business groups and no longer offered as individual plans). Please confirm with your insurance if you need a one-time referral. Note: Oxford’s Medicare Managed Care plan — Secure Horizon — does not include Memorial Sloan Kettering as an in-network provider. Oxford does not include us in any of the plans you can buy through the insurance exchanges.
Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with the World Trade Center Health Program.
Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with QualCare's PPO and HMO/POS network.
Memorial Sloan Kettering is a designated Center of Excellence by Specialty Care Management.
Hospital and physician services may be covered by TRICARE. Please call your TRICARE plan to confirm coverage at Memorial Sloan Kettering.
Memorial Sloan Kettering is an in-network provider with UnitedHealthCare's HMO, POS, and PPO plans. Please confirm with your insurance if a one-time referral is needed.
UnitedHealthCare's Medicare Managed Care plan does not include Memorial Sloan Kettering as an in-network provider.
United does not include us in any of the plans you can buy through the insurance exchanges.
Memorial Sloan Kettering is a designated Center of Excellence by UnitedHealthcare.
Contact and Location
Memorial Sloan Kettering has locations throughout New York City, Long Island, New Jersey, and Westchester. These locations offer many services, including screening, chemotherapy, and medical testing.
MD, New York University School of Medicine
Surgery - Albert Einstein College of Medicine/Montefiore Medical Center
Surgical Oncology - Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
I am a surgical oncologist who has been caring for people with breast cancer for more than 30 years. I am particularly interested in the genetics of breast cancer as well as addressing the psychosocial aspects that impact how people cope with their diagnosis and treatment.
I perform approximately 250 to 300 surgeries per year and work closely with an experienced and dedicated team of experts at MSK Commack who specialize in chemotherapy, immunotherapy, radiation, reconstruction, and other aspects of breast cancer treatment. We coordinate closely so patients on Long Island can receive high-quality cancer care that is also convenient.
When patients are told that they have cancer, sometimes that is all they hear. They often think of someone they know who has died of cancer and are afraid they will have the same fate. A newly diagnosed patient may not realize that there are many types of cancer and different stages, and that, in most cases, cancer found at an early stage can be successfully treated.
I make it a priority to arm my patients with the best and most up-to-date information about their diagnosis and treatment options so they are empowered to make good decisions about their care. I believe that knowledge is power. By taking the time to show them their mammograms, review their radiology and pathology reports with them, and explain the staging and the choices they need to make, they lose some of that fear. They feel more confident about their decisions and know that they can rely on me to help get them through this difficult time.
I was trained in surgery in the Bronx in the 1980s, where much of the care we provided was for emergency traumas. This meant that I had to think quickly and make snap decisions, and I typically did not have the chance to develop a rapport with my patients. I realized that it was more rewarding to build relationships with the people in my care by considering their problem, planning their surgery, and maintaining long-term follow-up with them. That’s how I built my practice over the years.
Early in my career, mastectomy used to be the primary treatment for breast cancer, often followed by chemotherapy and sometimes radiation. Today, the focus has shifted to using less radical surgery and more than one type of treatment. Many patients can now be treated with an outpatient lumpectomy and a pill and no other treatments, especially if they are older. Some patients with more aggressive or advanced cancers get preoperative treatments that allow us to do less surgery with fewer complications.
The decisions about whether or not to treat a cancer, which operation to choose, and the proper timing for surgery have become very complicated, and I help patients weigh the risks and benefits of all their options. I am also experienced in all the new oncoplastic techniques, including skin- and nipple-sparing mastectomies, and which one is most appropriate for each patient.
At Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK), we are all involved in research. We conduct many clinical trials to try to improve care and outcomes for people with breast cancer. Many of our studies deal with de-escalating treatments, or giving patients only the treatments that we know will help them.
Because treatment plans often involve more than one specialty, and sometimes participation in a clinical trial, I believe that the best care is offered at a dedicated cancer center like MSK.
Outside of work, I love spending time with my three adult daughters and my large, extended family. It’s especially meaningful to cook recipes taught to me by my mother and grandmother. I also enjoy traveling, attending the opera and the symphony, and staying active by playing golf, hiking, and most recently, cross-country skiing!
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.
Research and Publications
“Multidisciplinary training for breast surgical oncology.” Kuerer HM, Pass HA, Simmons R, Sclafani L. In: Kuerer’s Breast Surgical Oncology. Kuerer H,ed. New York: McGraw Hill; 2008.
“Central duct exploration for nipple discharge.” Sclafani L. In: Kuerer’s Breast Surgical Oncology. Kuerer H, ed. New York: McGraw Hill; 2008.
“Nutritional support in the gynecologic oncology patient.” Sclafani L, Brennan MF. In: Principles and Practice of Gynecologic Oncology. Hoskins WJ, Perez CA, Young RC, eds. Philadelphia: JB Lippincott; 1992.
“Nutritional support of the critically ill cancer patient.” Sclafani L, Lowry SF. In: Critical Care of the Cancer Patient. 2nd ed. Groeger J, ed. Chicago: Yearbook Medical Publishers; 1991.
“Nutritional support in the cancer patient.” Sclafani L, Brennan MF. In: Total Parenteral Nutrition. 2nd ed. Fischer J, ed. New York: Little, Brown; 1991.
“Benign papillary lesions of the breast.” Sclafani L. In: Breast Diseases. 2nd ed. Harris J, ed. Chicago: Yearbook Medical Publishers; 1991.
“Care of the surgical wound.” Coit DG, Sclafani L. In: Care of the Surgical Patient. 2nd ed. New York: Scientific American Medicine; 1990.
Sclafani LM, Baron RH. Sentinel lymph node biopsy and axillary dissection: Added morbidity of the arm, shoulder and chest wall after mastectomy and reconstruction. The cancer journal (Sudbury, Mass). 2008;14(4):216-222. doi:10.1097/PPO.0b013e31817fbe5e
Sclafani LM, Bleznak A, Kelly T, El-Tamer MB. Training a New Generation of Breast Surgeons: Are We Succeeding? Annals of surgical oncology. 2012;19(6):1856-1861. doi:10.1245/s10434-011-2164-7
Moo TA, Pawloski KR, Sevilimedu V, et al. Changing the Default: A Prospective Study of Reducing Discharge Opioid Prescription after Lumpectomy and Sentinel Node Biopsy. Annals of surgical oncology. 2020;27(12):4637-4642. doi:10.1245/s10434-020-08886-9Morrow M, Van Zee KJ, Patil S, et al. Axillary Dissection and Nodal Irradiation Can Be Avoided for Most Node-positive Z0011-eligible Breast Cancers: A Prospective Validation Study of 793 Patients. Annals of surgery. 2017;266(3):457-462. doi:10.1097/SLA.0000000000002354
Visit PubMed for a full listing of Dr. Sclafani’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.
At MSK, we’re committed to delivering the best care to every patient. We use feedback from our patients to continue to improve our care. We also post patient reviews online to help you make healthcare choices. Learn more about our patient experience reviews.
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.
Lisa M. Sclafani 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, 2021 through disclosure submission in spring 2022). This data reflects interests that may or may not still exist. This data is updated annually.