Practice Locations

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Appointment Information

New Patient Registration:

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This provider is not accepting new patients. See a list of providers who are accepting new patients.
Please call the New Patient Registration line to confirm that the provider you wish to see is accepting new patients. We strongly encourage you to call your insurance company directly to verify this provider is in-network for your specific insurance plan.

Existing Patients:

Direct Clinic Line - Express Care:
Direct Clinic Line - Urgent Care, La Jolla:
Emergency Department - La Jolla:
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About Desiree Leithem, MS, CNS, FNP-C

Desiree Leithem, MS, is a clinical nurse specialist (CNS) and certified family nurse practitioner (FNP-C) who provides comprehensive care for people of all ages. Her focus is preventive care for individuals in health and wellness. She has over two decades of experience in emergency medicine and serves as the nurse practitioner manager for the Emergency Departments at UC San Diego Health. As part of Express Care at UC San Diego Health, Ms. Leithem provides routine checkups and care for conditions that include minor illnesses and injuries, respiratory illnesses, colds and flu, fever, headache and pain. She also administers immunizations, screening tests and performs sports physicals.

Previously, Ms. Leithem was a nurse practitioner in the emergency department and as part of the bone marrow transplant team at UC San Diego Health. She has also cared for patients at Scripps Coastal Medical Center, Camp Pendleton, Mission Hospital, and Rady's Children's Hospital.

She completed the family nurse practitioner post-master's study program at USD Hahn School of Nursing and Health Science. She earned a master's degree in critical care and trauma from UCSF and a bachelor's degree in nursing from The College of New Rochelle in New York.

Ms. Leithem was as an emergency room registered nurse at New York-Presbyterian Hospital during 9/11. She was among the trauma and critical care health care professionals who helped save lives of those impacted by the attacks.

Outside of work, Desiree is a dedicated military wife who enjoys spending time with her two children and husband. She also enjoys surfing, rock climbing, baking and seeking worldwide adventures.

UC San Diego Health Links
For more information, see Express Care and Primary Care.

Insurance Information
UC San Diego Health accepts most major health insurance plans, but you should verify that your plan covers this provider and all services and locations. The information in the link below does not apply to affiliate providers, who are not employed by UC San Diego Health.
Health Insurance Plans Accepted

Degree

  • University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, CA

Degree

  • The College of New Rochelle, New York, NY

Gender

  • Female

Date Joined Staff

  • 2014-09-01

Board Certifications

  • American Academy of Nurse Practitioners Certification Board
Insurance Information
UC San Diego Health accepts most major health insurance plans, but you should verify that your plan covers this provider and all services and locations. The information in the link below does not apply to affiliate providers, who are not employed by UC San Diego Health.
Health Insurance Plans Accepted