Nancy Y. Lee, MD

Nancy Y. Lee, MD, FASTRO

Radiation Oncologist & Early Drug Development Specialist

My Role at MSK

Areas of Expertise

My Specialties

  • Head and Neck Cancers
  • Skin Cancers
  • Thyroid Cancer

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About Me

What I Do at MSK
  • Vice Chair, Experimental Therapeutics, Department of Radiation Oncology
  • Service Chief, Head & Neck Radiation Oncology
  • Service Chief, Proton Therapy
Get To Know Me

I am a radiation oncologist with more than 17 years of experience. I specialize in using advanced forms of radiation to treat head and neck cancer, including thyroid cancer. These include proton therapy, intensity modulated radiation therapy, image-guided radiation therapy, and stereotactic body radiation therapy.

My goal in using these technologies is to improve my patients’ outcomes while decreasing potential treatment side effects and preserving their quality of life. No matter which treatment option we use, I care for all of my patients as if they were part of my family. This means creating a plan tailored to their unique disease, and doing everything I can to help them get well.

Read more

There are many effective treatment options for people diagnosed with tumors in the head and neck. We can get rid of many of these tumors without the need for an invasive surgery. Instead, we can use radiation therapy alone or in combination with immunotherapy, targeted therapy, or chemotherapy. This is especially true for tumors in the tonsils, base of the tongue, and soft palate.

People who come to me for their care never see only me. I believe it’s important to consult with my colleagues in medical oncology and surgery. All of my patients benefit from the combined expertise of several doctors who are committed to curing their cancer and helping them get back to their lives.

My research is focused on ways to make radiation therapy for head and neck cancers safer and more effective. I am the principal investigator for many national and international clinical trials. For example, for people with very advanced head and neck cancer, I am researching the effectiveness of immunotherapy combined with chemoradiation. I am also studying the use of plasma Epstein-Barr virus DNA to individualize treatment for people with nasopharyngeal cancer.

In recent years, we have seen a rise in cases of head and neck cancer caused by the human papilloma virus (HPV). Though these cancers may respond to conventional therapies, we need to find innovative new ways to treat them. I am one of the leading experts in this area. I am currently leading a trial to evaluate the use of smaller radiation doses for select people with HPV-related head and neck cancers. These smaller doses mean we can help people avoid possible side effects from extensive radiation.

I am also very active in many cooperative groups such as NRG Oncology and National Cancer Institute committees. I have authored numerous articles focusing on head and neck cancers with the goal of defining appropriate treatment for people with these diseases. I am one of the major thought leaders in the world for the treatment of head and neck cancer. 

People who are diagnosed with cancer may feel hopeless. When I meet with patients, I always try to restore their hope by clearly explaining treatment options, answering questions, and discussing any concerns. I also remind them that even though we will work to make their tumor go away, I won’t be going anywhere; I will be with them every step of the way and will continue to see them for the rest of their lives. 

My Role at MSK

A radiation oncologist is a cancer doctor with special training in using radiation therapy (RT) to treat cancer with radiation.

An early drug development specialist tests new drugs to treat cancer. They have special training in research studies, known as clinical trials.

Areas of Expertise

My Specialties

  • Head and Neck Cancers
  • Skin Cancers
  • Thyroid Cancer
  • Mouth Cancer
Education & Honors

Education

  • MD, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey

Residencies

  • Radiation Oncology - Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center

Awards and Honors

  • Castle Connolly: Top AAPI Doctor (2024)
  • Castle Connolly: Exceptional Women in Medicine (2024)
  • Castle Connolly: America’s Top Doctor (2024)
  • Top Doctors New York Metro Area, Castle Connolly (2023)
  • Exceptional Women in Medicine Award, Castle Connolly (2023)
  • Castle Connolly: America's Top Doctors (2023)
  • Castle Connolly: New York Magazine Top Doctors (2013-2020)

Board Certifications

  • Radiation 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

Connecticare

In Network Coverage Type
POS, EPO, HMO

Emblem

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, POS, EPO, HMO

Offers a qualified health plan from the Health Insurance Marketplace. Call Emblem to learn more.

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

Offers a qualified health plan from the Health Insurance Marketplace. Call Fidelis to learn more.

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

Offers a qualified health plan from the Health Insurance Marketplace. Call Healthfirst to learn more.

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. Lee sees patients at one location.

Office Phone
Location
New York, NY

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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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See all External Beam Radiotherapy Service, Manhattan doctors

See all Brachytherapy Service doctors

See all Proton Therapy doctors

Clinical Trials

Research and Publications

Publications on PubMed

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

Nancy Y. Lee discloses the following relationships and financial interests:

  • Galera Therapeutics, Inc.
    Professional Services and Activities
  • Merck & Co Inc.
    Professional Services and Activities
  • Merck Serono
    Professional Services and Activities
  • Nanobiotix
    Professional Services and Activities (Uncompensated)
  • Shanghai Jo’Ann Medical Technology Co., Ltd
    Professional Services and Activities
  • Shanghai Yingming Consulting Co., Ltd
    Professional Services and Activities

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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