We Are Compassionate Oncologist NJ Practitioners

Maithili Rao, M.D.

Dr. Maithili Rao founded ACOHA with the vision of building an integrated approach to treating cancer and blood disorders, with a focus on excelling at patient care and quality. The practice has now grown to 4 locations in Springfield (Summit, Short Hills), Morristown (Randolph, Denville), West Orange (Livingston, E. Hanover), Hackettstown (Newton, Sparta) areas. Prior to ACOHA, Dr. Rao established an extremely busy and successful practice in Morris county with offices at Carol Simon Cancer Center in Morristown Memorial Hospital and Cancer Care at Saint Clare’s Denville Hospital. She was voted NJ Monthly Magazine’s “Top Doctor” in 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 – and was featured on the cover of 2013 issue. Four state-of-the-art locations to service New Jersey statewide as Oncologist NJ Practitioners and Hematologist Specialists with exceptional compassion.

Dr. Rao is a national speaker in the area of Genetics and other cutting edge treatments in the areas of Oncology and Hematology. With her many community outreach programs, and active involvement in cancer fund raising, Dr. Rao has solidified a strong presence in community treating all areas of hematological and oncological issues. She has a special interest in breast and ovarian cancer, leukemia, genetics, and management of complex hematology issues for high risk pregnancy patients.

Dr. Rao has published and presented several peer – reviewed articles, posters and abstracts at regional and national oncology meetings. As an active and concerned oncologist, Dr. Rao gives several lectures a year for patients and their families, community organizations, nursing and physician groups, and residents.

Dr. Rao completed her Hematology and Oncology Fellowship at the University of Rochester, New York and is board-certified in Medical Oncology and Hematology.

Ashish Khot, M.D.

Dr. Ashish Khot completed his Hematology and Oncology Fellowship at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Montefiore Medical Center. He finished his residency and internship at St. Luke’s Roosevelt Hospital Center, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York, NY.

Dr. Khot is board-certified in Medical Oncology, Hematology and Internal Medicine.

Dr. Khot is an active attending faculty at Saint Barnabas Medical Center and Overlook Medical Center where he regularly lectures and offers teaching rotations for residents and students in the Department of Medicine. He maintains a special interest in management of patients with urological malignancies and lung cancers.

Charlesse Pondt, M.D.

Dr. Pondt completed her Hematology and Oncology Fellowship at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Montefiore Medical Center. She finished her residency and internship at Cornell University, New York, NY.

Charlesse maintains a special interest in management of patients with breast and gynecological cancers, management of complex hematological issues in high risk pregnancy patients and sickle cell patients.

Joshua Strauss, M.D.

Dr. Joshua Strauss is a Hematologist-Oncologist who is trained in all malignancies and blood disorders. He graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a BA in chemistry and went on to earn his medical degree at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, where he graduated with special distinction for research in medical oncology. After finishing his residency at New York University Medical Center, he completed his fellowship at the world-renowned New York Presbyterian-Columbia University Medical Center in NY, where he participated in high level research and published several peer reviewed articles in the area of gastrointestinal cancer.

He maintains membership in national organizations including American Society of Clinical Oncology, American Society of Hematology and American Medical Association. In his practice he strives to incorporate the most up to date knowledge in the field with an approach geared to the needs of each individual patient. He especially takes pride in treating his patients with compassion and going the extra mile to deliver the best care possible. 

Ramsey Asmar, M.D.

Dr. Ramsey Asmar attended medical school at Wayne State University where he graduated with distinction. He then completed his Internal Medicine Residency at the University of Michigan. Dr. Asmar served on the clinical faculty at U-M for 4 years, as Director of a hospitalist-staffed malignant hematology service.  During this time, he gained extensive clinical experience managing patients with a wide variety of hematologic cancers.

Dr. Asmar subsequently completed his Hematology & Oncology Fellowship at Columbia University Medical Center in New York City, with a focus in thoracic oncology. While at Columbia, he authored a number of papers, designed a clinical trial, and led a variety of research initiatives for novel strategies in the treatment of lung cancer.

Dr. Asmar is thrilled to be practicing with Advanced Care Oncology & Hematology Associates, bringing with him his warm demeanor and a dedication to providing exceptional, state-of-the-art patient care. Though his primary focus remains thoracic oncology, he treats all hematologic and oncologic conditions.

Ashish Shah, D.O., M.Sc

Dr. Ashish Shah completed his Hematology and Oncology Fellowship and Internal Medicine Residency at Robert Wood Johnson/Rutgers University Hospital at the Cancer Institute of New Jersey in New Brunswick, New Jersey.  He is board-certified in Medical Oncology, Hematology, and Internal Medicine.

Dr. Shah joined Lehigh Valley Health Network in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania in 2009 where he built and maintained a busy clinical practice treating patients with complex hematologic and oncologic conditions.  He was Founder and Director of the Leukemia/Lymphoma Service at LVHN-Muhlenberg Campus and Co-Director of the Adolescent & Young Adult Oncology Multidisciplinary Clinic.  Dr. Shah also served as Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine at University of South Florida Morsani College of Medicine where he was active in clinical teaching of medical students and residents and helped develop and serve as faculty member of the newly created Hematology and Oncology Fellowship at LVHN.

Dr. Shah brings his years of experience and youthful enthusiasm towards building a practice focused on patient-centered care using the most advanced and innovative cancer treatments.  He treats all conditions but maintains a special interest in the management of patients with hematologic malignancies, such as leukemia, lymphoma, multiple myeloma, as well as breast cancer, lung cancer and adolescents with newly diagnosed oncologic malignancies and/or hematologic conditions.

Nikki Bajaj, M.D.

Dr. Nikki Bajaj is board certified in internal medicine and specializes in hematology/ oncology. She completed her hematology/ oncology fellowship as a chief fellow at St. Joseph Regional Medical Centre, NJ, an affiliate of New York Medical College. Dr. Bajaj finished her internal medicine residency at Seton Hall University, West orange, NJ. During her training, she published a multitude of journal articles and case reports.

Dr Bajaj has been practicing internal medicine as a hospitalist for about four years in New Jersey and Missouri. This has provided her immense exposure and opportunity to acquire substantial clinical grounding in the management of various aspects of acute and chronic diseases. Dr. Bajaj specializes in the diagnosis and management of all cancer types, blood disorders, leukemia and lymphomas. She believes the most important aspect of cancer treatment is patient education and shared decision making for an individualized, evidence based and comprehensive treatment plan for all her patients.

Marlene Schmitz,

Marlene is a Nurse Practitioner at ACOHA. With several years of adult internal medicine practice experience, Marlene joined our practice in 2013 and specializes in managing patients on treatment for anemia, blood clots and symptoms during chemotherapy treatments.

She graduated from The College of NJ with a BSN and later graduated from UMDNJ with MSN with a specialty in adult health.

Marlene is a board certified Adult Nurse Practitioner (ANP-BC) She is an active member in sigma theta tau nursing honor Society-Omicron Pi Chapter.

Edgar “Joed” La Chica

Joed is a Nurse Practitioner at ACOHA. With several years of being a cardiology nurse, Joed joined our practice and specializes in managing patients on treatment for anemia, blood clots and symptoms during chemotherapy treatments.

La Chica graduated from Walden University  with a specialty in acute care.

Joed is a board certified Adult Nurse Practitioner (ANP-BC).

Cherry Rudge

Cherry Lou C Rudge is a Nurse Practitioner Specialist. She graduated with honors in 2014. Having more than 3 years of diverse experiences, especially in Nurse Practitioner. Cherry Lou C Rudge affiliates with Saint Barnabas Medical Center, and cooperates with all of the ACOHA facilities.

Kari Sierant, APN

Kari Sierant is a Nurse Practitioner at ACOHA. Kari graduated from  Fairleigh Dickenson University receiving her Masters as an Adult Gerontology Advanced Practice Nurse specializing in chronic patient urgent care.

With extensive years of adult internal medicine practice experience, Kari joined our practice and specializes in managing patients on treatment for anemia, blood clots and symptoms during chemotherapy treatments.

Kari is board certified by the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP). She additionally achieved certification for Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS).


Jessica Surloff, PA

Jessica Surloff completed her Physician Assistant Program from Long Island University. She has extensive experience in private practice having worked as a PA in New York in the areas of infectious diseases, radiology and primary/urgent care. Jessica is based out of our West Orange location.

Jennifer Figueroa, PA

Jennifer Figueroa completed her Physician Assistant Program from UMDNJ. She has extensive experience in private practice  having worked as a PA in New Jersey in the areas of GI, pediatrics. Jennifer has also worked as a PA in hospitals.

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ACOHA Nursing Staff

Contact Us Today!

To find out more about our facilities and services contact one of our state-of-the-art offices.

385 Morris Avenue, Suite 100
Springfield, NJ 07081

Business Hours:
Monday-Friday 8am-5pm
Saturday and Sunday Closed

741 Northfield Ave. Suite 203
West Orange, NJ 07052

Phone: 973.379.2111
Fax: 973.379.2807
Top Rated NJ Oncologist
& Hematologist Specialists

Carol G. Simon Cancer Center
100 Madison Avenue 2nd Floor
Morristown, NJ 07960


Hackettstown Medical Center
657 Willow Grove Street Suite 303
Hackettstown, NJ 07840