Efrat Lelkes, MD

Pediatric critical care and palliative care physician

Dr. Efrat Lelkes is a pediatric critical and palliative care physician, working in the transitional care unit (TCU) as well as the Integrated Pain and Palliative Care (IP3) service at Benioff Children's Hospital.

In the TCU, Lelkes cares for children who need extra medical attention but are not ill enough to be in the critical care unit. In palliative care, she works as part of a team to support patients and their families in managing symptoms and meeting emotional needs.

To better understand ethical issues in her field, Lelkes studies human society and culture, looking at questions that arise from relationships among medicine, politics, law and philosophy. Through these efforts, she hopes to address difficulties that arise for professionals in the children's hospital, such as moral distress and burnout.

Lelkes earned her medical degree at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health. She then completed a residency in pediatrics at the University of Chicago, a fellowship in pediatric critical care at UCSF and a fellowship in palliative care at the University of Washington.

Lelkes earned certification in pediatric bioethics through the Children's Mercy Center for Bioethics. Outside of work, she is interested in the arts and issues of social justice.


Pediatric Intensive Care Unit
1975 Fourth St., Fourth Floor
San Francisco, CA 94158
Phone: (415) 353-1352

More about Efrat Lelkes


University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health 2006


University of Chicago, Pediatrics 2009


UCSF, Pediatric Critical Care 2013
University of Washington, Palliative Care 2017

Selected Research and Publications

  1. Lelkes E. Humility Through Humiliation in Continuity Clinic. Perspect Biol Med. 2016; 59(3):419-424.
  2. Lelkes E, Headley MB, Thornton EE, Looney MR, Krummel MF. The spatiotemporal cellular dynamics of lung immunity. Trends Immunol. 2014 Aug; 35(8):379-86.

Publications are derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and provided by UCSF Profiles, a service of the Clinical & Translational Science Institute (CTSI) at UCSF. Researchers can make corrections and additions to their publications by logging on to UCSF Profiles.