Health system executives, patient flow strategists, transfer center directors and industry experts share their insights on operationalizing transfer center logistics to balance patient care and growth.

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MELISSA (LISS) MOONEY, MSN, RN
Dartmouth Hitchcock, Director of System Staffing/FlexChoice and the Transfer Center

Liss has been in nursing leadership with Dartmouth Hitchcock for three years, and was previously a nursing and pharmacy director at Alice Peck Day Memorial Hospital.  She has over twenty years of experience as a registered nurse including past work in a variety of acute care practice settings. Liss is a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives and Rotary Club International, a Team STEPPS master trainer and Lean Six Sigma Yellow Belt certified.  Liss lives in Lebanon, New Hampshire with her husband, two teenage children, and two poorly socialized Bernese Mountain Dogs.

MOLLY RANK
PeaceHealth, PI LEAD MANAGEMENT ENGINEER

Molly supports PeaceHealth as part of the Performance Improvement (PI) team. She has served in a variety of roles on the PI team, including Management Engineer (ME) Lead for the Columbia Network, and she is currently serving as a system leader for the PeaceHealth PI team.

Working closely with Judy Raimo, Service Line Director, Molly has discovered a special place in her heart for operationalizing measures related to patient flow. Over the course of her career in industry and healthcare, she’s learned the importance of making data more meaningful and accessible to frontline caregivers and leaders. She’s been integral in development of a systemwide Tableau-based LOS dashboard providing easy access to LOS-related metrics (e.g., overall LOS by unit and by DRG) and discharge-related metrics (e.g., timeliness of discharge order entry, timeliness of discharge).

In her time at PeaceHealth, she’s enjoyed working with providers, caregivers and leaders in learning and applying the concepts of Lean to identify solutions to improve the team dynamic.  As part of the ME team, Molly assists with the process of issue discovery and facilitates the testing of hypotheses using data analysis and modeling (considering the questions, “Is this truly the problem,” and “Will this approach help here?”).

Prior to her time in healthcare, Molly spent the first 14 years of her career at UL LLC, where she put her Biomedical Engineering degree to work in evaluating and testing medical equipment for several years before ultimately landing in process improvement.  Her exposure to Lean as a part of the UL team made her aware of the need for daily improvement – inspired, led and supported by the people doing the work.

JUDY RAIMO
PEACEHEALTH, PI LEAD, MANAGEMENT ENGINEER

With over 30 years of experience, Judy Raimo is a seasoned Nurse leader in the Care Management and Patient Flow arena. Judy’s vision of a centralized resource allocation center has become a reality at PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center. Currently serving as a Service Line Director, Judy oversees Care Coordination across the continuum, Utilization Review, Discharge Planning, Centralized Bed Management/Interfacility Transfer Center, Float Pool, Hospitalist Services and the House Supervisors.

Innovative, collaborative and transformational are words that describe Judy’s leadership style. Partnering with Molly Rank, System Director of Performance Improvement, has been the key to recent success at PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center. Molly brings organizational expertise in healthcare data and analytics and supports process improvement teams. These interdisciplinary teams have achieved a length of stay reduction of .50 days sustained for one year 2017-2018, increased access to private with corelated improved Press Gainey Patient Experience scores, decreased time of ED to inpatient bed placement, and reduced LWBS in the ED.

Learning to speak the Language of the CFO and Executive Team has created renewed employee engagement and meaningful work within workgroups and teams. This fluency, according to Judy, is the “magic sauce” to getting approval for the FTE’s, technology and resources necessary for success.

BROOKE BILLINGSLEY
PERCEPTION STRATEGIES, INC, CEO

Brooke uses evidence-based patient perception research sprinkled with humor and storytelling to show how moving from a task environment to a touch environment is the key to improving the patient experience. Based on 1,000 hours of observing and interviewing patients in hospitals across the country, Moving From Task To Touch helps health professionals understand how their team can better connect with patients by introducing touch concepts that are consistent with what Brooke’s research indicates patients want.

Brooke’s talk utilizes video excerpts from Task To Touch e-Learning, a new video training company featured on HealthStream®, interactive exercises, and inspirational stories to help activate touch for participants.

In addition to being CEO of Task To Touch LLC, Brooke is also CEO of Perception Strategies, Inc., one of the nation’s largest healthcare mystery shopping companies. A successful trainer and consultant, Brooke helps clients across the U.S. achieve their own success by understanding and benefiting from consumer perception so that they can remain competitive in today’s market. Brooke is co-author of Turn Your Customer On: 23 Ways to Motivate Employees and Make Your Customers Love You. She has been featured on Good Morning America and in The Wall Street Journal as well as several professional healthcare magazines.

NORM DINERMAN, MD, FACEP
LIFEFLIGHT OF MAINE, MEDICAL DIRECTOR

Dr. Dinerman serves as the Medical Director, LifeFlight of Maine. He is also the Medical Director of the Transfer Center, the Tele-health program and the Regional Health Care Partnership Provider Relationsprogram at Eastern Maine Medical Center. As well, he is the Physician Advisor to the Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act (EMTALA) compliance program. In these positions, he provides medical oversight of the system for transfer and transport of patients to Eastern Maine Medical Center and telemedicine activities, as well as the statewide LifeFlight of Maine air and ground critical care transport teams and the MedComm Communications Center. He is an active participant in national, local and statewide activities which bear upon “peri-hospital” care of patients. His clinical practice is that of emergency medicine and critical care transport medicine aboard LifeFlight aircraft and ground ambulances. Of late, he has focused considerable effort on improving patient flow and institutional capacity, particularly as it affects the ability of a hospital to manage the volume of patients who present with an unscheduled demand for care.

Dr. Dinerman served as the Chief of the Emergency Medicine Service at Eastern Maine Medical Center for eighteen years, completing his tenure in this position on Oct. 31, 2006. From June 1992 to June 1996 he served as the State EMS Medical Director for Maine. From March 1979 until October 1988 he served as the Associate Director, Department of Emergency Medicine, Denver General Hospital, Denver, Colorado, as well as the Director and Physician Advisor to the Paramedic Division for the Denver Department of Health and Hospitals and Physician Advisor to the Denver Fire Department. During the same period he served as the Agency Disaster Coordinator for the Denver Department of Health and Hospitals. He is a former member of the National Association of EMS Physicians where he served as the Chairman of the Legal Affairs Committee. He has served as a member of the EMS Technical Assistance Team for the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration on multiple occasions. He lectured as a charter faculty member of the National EMS Medical Directors’ Course and Practicum for more than twelve years.

Dr. Dinerman is a native of New York City and received his undergraduate education at Columbia University and his medical degree from Yale University. He completed his internship and residency in Internal Medicine at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, Denver, Colorado. He is Board Certified in Internal Medicine and Emergency Medicine. He received his flight training to become a licensed pilot, in Denver, Colorado.

He has a deep and abiding interest in the academic, operational, political, clinical and cultural aspects of health care system design, particularly as it relates to, and impacts transport medicine, telehealth, patient flow and hospital capacity. His personal motto remains “passion, creativity and irreverence in the service of evolution….”

ALLISON MASSARI
KEYNOTE SPEAKER, STORYTELLER, BURN SURVIVOR, VISUAL ARTIST, EXECUTIVE COACH

Allison Massari knows that you have the power to transform lives. As an advocate for both patient and provider, Massari has an intimate understanding of the demands and challenges of the medical profession, and compelling authority to address the delicate nature of patient-centered care. She experienced firsthand the critical value of receiving personalized health care from committed leadership teams, and empathetic providers after surviving two life-threatening car accidents, one where she suffered second and third degree burns on over 50% of her body. In addition, raised by her father, an Oncology surgeon, and her mother, a nurse, Allison was mentored in the world of medicine from an early age. Captivated by her father’s compassionate work, she shadowed him in his practice, and also worked in hospitals and medical office settings. Allison’s riveting and courageous journey from absolute loss to a triumphant and hope-filled life, addresses sensitive topics, shining light on the provider’s immense value to a patient who is suffering, and helping to reinvigorate employees and heal burnout in the workplace.

Prepare to be taken on a journey. With her perceptive view inside the patient experience, Allison Massari’s riveting and insightful keynote illuminates the immense value that healthcare providers have upon a patient who is suffering. This dynamic and poignant program offers real solutions to the struggle of how to keep the patient first despite limited time and other practical constraints. By weaving her remarkable journey with potent life-lessons, Allison highlights the integral nature of patient-centered care and fortifies audience members, reigniting their passion for why they went into healthcare in the first place. She explains, “The power of what you do goes far beyond the technical part of your job. You are healing the places medicine cannot touch. In fact YOU are the medicine.” Hailed as “life-changing”, Allison’s keynote offers a sincere and direct approach to navigating adversity, transcending life’s difficulties, and always finding a way to be the healer in the room. This content rich and deeply moving speech also offers applicable tools for managing change, adversity, and the everyday challenges of being human.

Allison Massari has been named one of the Top Ten Best Speakers for motivation by Meetings and Conventions Magazine. As an international keynote speaker, executive coach and entrepreneur, Allison ignites vitality, inspires confidence, and bolsters success in audiences worldwide. At the 2013 Million Dollar Round Table Conference she was a main platform speaker, addressing 8,600 people from 75 countries. She also spoke about “The Future of Happiness” at a TEDx event in Spain. She has been featured on ABC, NBC and FOX networks, and starred in an award-winning documentary about overcoming adversity and PTSD, hosted by the head of special forces for the US military in Afghanistan.

KEVIN L. MEEK, RN-BSN, BA, MH
MEEK CLINICAL PARTNERS, LLC, PRESIDENT

Healthcare first piqued Kevin’s interest when he was a teen volunteer at the Orange, CA hospital where he was born. After working as an ambulance EMT for many years, Kevin chose to continue his healthcare career by becoming a RN, providing care in such settings as Trauma ICU, Emergency Room, Trauma Room, and Post-Surgical units. He has been an advocate for patients and their families as a bedside RN, as well as an advocate for his staff as a Charge Nurse, Director, Chief Nursing Officer, and Vice President.

Kevin earned his Master’s in Healthcare Innovation from Arizona State University and is one of a small few in the nation to hold this degree. Combined with a nursing degree, public speaking degree, and organizational leadership degree, Kevin brings a unique perspective and approach to clinical integration and innovation.

Kevin has served as a clinical and professional advisor on several healthcare boards, been published in various journals, and speaks nationally at conferences on patient engagement and clinical integration and innovation.

In 2017, he founded Meek Clinical Partners where he now works collaboratively with chief executive leadership teams from hospitals across the country to formulate and implement successful hospital and ambulatory care models.

JOHN J. NANCE, JD
HEALTHCARE ADVOCATE, SPEAKER, AUTHOR, AIR FORCE VETERAN, AVIATION ANALYST
FOR ABC WORLD NEWS, AVIATION EDITOR FOR GOOD MORNING AMERICA

John is one of the key thought leaders to emerge in American Healthcare in the past decade, he brings a rich and varied professional background to the task of helping doctors, administrators, boards, and front-line staff alike survive and prosper during the most profoundly challenging upheaval in the history of modern medicine.

Having helped pioneer the Renaissance in patient safety as one of the founders of the National Patient Safety Foundation in 1997, his efforts (and healthcare publications) are dedicated to reforming American Healthcare from a reactive cottage industry to an effective and safe system of prevention and wellness. A lawyer, Air Force and airline pilot, prolific internationally-published author, national broadcaster, and renown professional speaker, John’s leadership is propelled by a deep commitment.

As a native Texan, John grew up in Dallas where he earned his Bachelors Degree and a Juris Doctor Degree from SMU, and is still a licensed Texas attorney. Named Distinguished Alumni of SMU for 2002, and distinguish Alumni for Public Service of the SMU Dedman School of Law in 2010, he is also a decorated Air Force pilot veteran of Vietnam and Operations Desert Storm/Desert Shield and a Lt. Colonel in the USAF Reserve, well known for his pioneering development of Air Force human factors flight safety education, and one of the civilian pioneers of Crew Resource Management (CRM). John has piloted a wide variety of jet aircraft, including most of Boeing’s line and the Air Force C-141, and has logged over 13,900 hours of flight time since earning his first pilot license in 1965, and is still a current pilot. He was a flight officer for Braniff International Airlines and a Boeing 737 Captain for Alaska Airlines, and is an internationally recognized air safety advocate, best known to North American
television audiences as Aviation Analyst for ABC World News and Aviation Editor for
Good Morning America.

Before joining ABC, John logged countless appearances on national shows such as Larry King Live, PBS Hour with Jim Lehrer, Oprah, NPR, Nova, the Today Show, and many others. He is also the nationally-known author of 20 major books, including the acclaimed WHY HOSPITALS SHOULD FLY (2009), and, with co-author Kathleen Bartholomew, CHARTING THE COURSE (2012), plus five non-fiction: (Splash of Colors, Blind Trust, On Shaky Ground, What Goes Up and Golden Boy) and 13 international fiction bestsellers: Final Approach, Scorpion Strike; Phoenix Rising); Pandora’s Clock; Medusa’s Child; The Last Hostage; Blackout; Fire Flight; Saving Cascadia; and Orbit. Pandora’s Clock and Medusa’s Child both aired as major, successful two-part mini-series on television. (WHY HOSPITALS SHOULD FLY won the prestigious “Book of the Year” award for 2009 from the American College of Healthcare Executives).

MICHELLE S. SKINNER, RN, BSN, MBA
THE ELEVA GROUP, PARTNER AND PRINCIPAL CONSULTANT

Michelle has more than 20 years of experience in executive leadership positions in for-profit and not-for-profit health systems. Her distinguished service includes multistate, integrated health systems in the Pacific Northwest, Colorado, Florida, and California. She has served in executive strategic and nursing leadership roles, operational and programmatic leadership, and strategic consultative and advisory roles and has achieved measurable results in multi-network healthcare transformation, outreach and business development, patient journey optimization, bed management, patient flow and trauma certification preparation. She is adept at strategizing market success for hospitals and healthcare systems with distinguished record of forging key relationships at all levels of an organization from business champion to executive, to ensure highly- reliable outcomes. She received her BSN from Beth-El College of Nursing at University of Colorado, and her MBA from Regis University.

Michelle is passionate about ensuring sustainable change by collaboratively engaging key players to arrive at strategic solutions. Michelle can quickly assess complex organizational, process and people situations and bring together teams to implement enduring solutions. She is collaborative leader who is motivated by the “Why” behind the “What” before delivering win-win solutions.

Michelle follows a hands-on approach to client work. She has extensive experience in leading cross- functional teams to plan, build, launch, and manage complex projects. She is skillful at orchestrating multiple projects while ensuring the analytic ability to evolve project strategy as needed. Her specific areas of expertise include: clinical strategy and operations, patient flow, access to care strategies, strategic and operational implementation, business development, and leadership of high-performing leadership and physician teams. Michelle is a skilled communicator with excellent written, verbal, and presentation abilities.

Michelle is based in Montana and is a Partner and Principal Consultant at The Eleva Group, where she works with a small group of passionate, committed, dynamic, and experienced healthcare professionals where she leads and supports strategy, planning, and optimization engagements with some of the industry’s most progressive hospitals and health systems.

DARIN M. VERCILLO, MD
CENTRAL LOGIC, CHIEF MEDICAL OFFICER (CMO), MODERATOR

Darin Vercillo is a co-founder of Central Logic and has developed and implemented numerous medical information systems to manage complex patent needs, medical education, and faculty and staff logistics. Prior to founding Central Logic, Darin was a clinical advisor and technical developer at the University of Utah Health Sciences Center.

Darin is a practicing, board-certified hospitalist in the Salt Lake City area. He also served as a physician knowledge engineer and interim Chief Medical Officer at TheraDoc in Salt Lake City.

CONNIE WROBLEWSKI, RN
ST. LUKES HOSPITAL

Connie Wroblewski, RN is on a mission to demonstrate the importance of a strategic patient flow process and the impact it can have on healthcare organizations. With her progressive 15 year nursing career in healthcare, from nursing assistant to unit manager, adjunct nursing faculty to nursing administration, she understands the importance of each key role in the patient flow process. She is currently employed at St. Luke’s Hospital in Duluth, Minnesota, where she has been the lead in the creation, development, and implementation of a centralized patient flow process. In the past year, the impact of this new process at St. Luke’s 267- bed level II Trauma Center is a revenue increase of 11%. Connie continues to fuel her passion of an effective process by pursuing her certificate in Project Management.

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