Commitment to quality, passion for teaching, and community involvement are common threads in the lives of the physicians nominated for AMDA's fourth annual Medical Director of the Year award. The 26 candidates are briefly profiled here, but full accounts of their accomplishments easily could fill many more pages.
The 2010 Medical Director of the Year will be announced during the opening general session of AMDA's “Long Term Care Medicine–2010” in Long Beach, Calif., March 12.
Joseph Brenes, MD, CMD
▸ Apple Rehab West Haven (formerly Harbor View Manor)
▸ Whitney Manor Rehabilitation & Nursing Center
▸ Walnut Hill Care Center
West Haven, Hamden, and New Britain, Conn.
Educates nursing students via facility-based rounds. In-services extensively about H1N1. Directed implementation of clinical pathways for numerous diagnoses. Trained and installed facility-based advanced practice nurse. Participates in dining programs to help eliminate resident weight loss. Provides monthly health clinic for staff.
Peter Dalum, MD, CMD
▸ Golden Living Three Oaks
Works to build relations among community care, acute care, and long-term care settings. Volunteers at local free medical clinic. Rounds at his facilities to ease the burden on attendings. Keeps abreast of new research and reports its significance to staff.
Peter DeGolia, MD, CMD
▸ University Hospitals Case Medical Center
Established new palliative care consult service. Secured $1 million grant to expand physician house calls into nursing facilities. Started a senior services department to improve care, especially at transitions. Directs geriatric medicine fellowship program. Hired coordinator of senior services to educate community about long-term care and home care.
Michael Dolamore, MD, CMD
▸ Ten Broeck Commons
Lake Katrine, N.Y.
Established wound-care team, ethics committee, and compassionate-care team. Participates in community outreach and encourages interaction with family members and education. Implemented hypodermoclysis practice guidelines, decreasing hospitalizations. Implemented medical orders for life sustaining treatment (MOLST).
Philip Dzwonczyk, MD, CMD
▸ New York State Veterans Home
Established a wound-care team and program for gradual dosage reduction. Established teaching rounds for nurses, social workers, and other clinical staff. Helps lead planning sessions on nonpharmacologic behavior-management interventions. Coaches staff on quality-care initiatives relating to F-tags.
Steven Ferguson, MD, CMD
▸ Down East Health and Rehab
Provides hands-on staff training. Involved in numerous community initiatives, including partnering with the National Screening Project for Dementia and hosting free memory screenings and an Alzheimer's candlelight vigil. Appeared in various media to discuss geriatric issues.
Clare I. Hays, MD, CMD
▸ Methodist Homes for the Aging
▸ University of Alabama Birmingham
Irondale and Birmingham, Ala.
Founding member of the Alabama Coalition for Nursing Home Culture Change. Makes regular presentations to geriatric fellows and medical residents. Active on Alabama Quality Assurance Foundation Pressure Ulcer Committee. Helped with advance directive guidelines.
Theodore Homa, MD, CMD
▸ Lutheran Life Communities
Arlington Heights, Ill.
Reinstituted ethics committee utilizing AMDA guidelines. Chairs meetings resulting in revised physician history and physical and discharge-summary processes, credentialing policy, and monitoring of physician-visit requirements and psychotropic-drug documentation. Recently underwent heart transplant surgery but never relinquished his medical director responsibilities.
Robert Gordon Hutcheon, MD, CMD
▸ Elizabeth Seton Pediatric Center
New York, N.Y.
Directed and revamped infection control program, establishing measures for prevention. Organized pediatric palliative care program with education for certified nursing assistants. Implemented a neighborhood-based forum where family members, staff, physicians, and other professionals discuss issues.
Tae Joon Lee, MD, CMD
▸ East Carolina University/Golden Living Center
Introduced and implemented medical orders for scope of treatment (MOST). Coordinated research project on ways to counsel and educate families about feeding options for patients with advanced dementia. Established methods to improve patient transfer between hospital and nursing home.
Adolphus Ray Lewis, DO, CMD
▸ Lexington Place Nursing & Rehabilitation
▸ Hurst Plaza Nursing & Rehabilitation
▸ Preferred Care Partners
Fort Worth and Arlington, Tex.
Active on community Alzheimer's Task Force and Physician House Calls for the Elderly. Chairs LTC Executive Director's Committee Hospice Advisory Board. Provides clinical training on policies and procedures for long-term care and hospice.
Leopold Liss, MD, MS, CMD
▸ Ohio State University Columbus Alzheimer's Care Center
Organizes numerous symposia on Alzheimer's disease. Founding member of the National Alzheimer's Association and former vice chair for the Ohio Research Council on Aging. Implemented several care guidelines on issues such as falls prevention and caregiver support. Helped to popularize behavioral modification and an Alzheimer's disease model.
Mary Morris, MD, CMD
▸ Golden Living Center-Redfield
Drafted a PT-INR (prothrombin time/international normalized ratio) flow sheet. Implemented use of physician orders for life sustaining treatment (POLST) forms. Participates in regular professional collaboration meetings. Provides diabetes education to the community and authors articles in local publications about cholesterol awareness. Leads facility's H1N1 flu surveillance and education efforts. Implemented electronic standard transfer orders.
Sandra Lilliana Oakes, MD, CMD
▸ Buena Vida Nursing and Rehab Center/Senior Psych Care
San Antonio, Tex.
Participated in developing and implementing a 5-week dementia-training program for nursing staff. Implements tools for dementia patients, such as activity aprons. Oversaw psychotropic- and restraint-reduction program.
James D. Potter, MD, CMD
▸ Good Shepherd Rehabilitation & Nursing Center
Helped organize the New Hampshire Medical Directors Association; currently serves as vice president. Initiated a quality improvement team to implement strategies that alert staff when a change of condition occurs. Started several quality improvement projects and implemented pain quality improvement process. Started interactive computer-based in-service programs for staff.
M. Frank Powell, MD, CMD
▸ Gibson Health and Rehabilitation
Active in quality assurance meetings and initiatives. Helped develop policy practice guidelines that ensure operation and survey compliance. Involved in community groups providing support to local citizens, especially the senior population.
James V. Rider, DO, CMD
▸ Plaza West Regional Health Center/Village Villa Inc.
Topeka and Nortonville, Kan.
Started a wound care coalition for all facilities in Topeka, Kan. Works with medical students. Active in numerous community organizations, including serving as president of local Rotary Club.
Peggy Russell, DO, CMD
▸ Hearthstone Healthcare Center
Round Rock, Tex.
Developed a process for weekly interdisciplinary team meetings and increased participation in these. Developed policy and procedures for point of care testing and warfarin management. Holds weekly case conferences with all practitioners. Serves on Family Eldercare Ethics Committee; assists in guardianship decision making. Developed a palliative care program, expanding resources and promoting advanced care planning.
Teresa Salazar-Catron, MD, CMD
▸ Asbury Place Maryville
Established a falls team, plus anticoagulation and palliative care protocols. Educates staff and families about various clinical issues and disease processes. Implemented Clostridium difficile protocols.
Robert Schreiber, MD, CMD
▸ Hebrew Senior Life
Boston and Roslindale, Mass.
Started a palliative care team. Created a leadership mentoring program, urging practitioners into a practice-change fellowship. Received a $100,000 grant to teach peers about healthy eating. Advanced the use of online medical records. Runs a geriatric clinic for tribal elders on the Lakota Reservation.
Robert F. Smith, MD, CMD
▸ Idaho State Veterans Home
Rounds regularly with the consultant pharmacist. Actively seeks and researches interpretative guidelines and drafts related policies and procedures. Updates staff in writing about issues of concern such as H1N1 flu prevention. Helped organize the Idaho Medical Directors Association.
W. Dennis Taylor, MD, CMD
▸ Chaplinwood Health and Rehab
Active on the facility's wound care and infection control teams and in its falls prevention program. Participates in community and regional scholarship programs. Involved in all aspects of quality assurance.
Linda Uhrig-Hitchcock, MD, CMD
▸ Scott & White Clinic
Prepared a plan for implementing nursing home care at the Scott & White Health System. Organized and managed a multispecialty nursing home–only practice and solo geriatric practice providing nursing home care. Presents on transition-of-care issues at physician assistant program. Provides programs on geriatric topics at local churches. Served as first chairman of a postacute-care quality and safety committee.
Rocco Vivenzio, MD, CMD
▸ Strong Health Geriatric Group
Established embedded nurse practitioner or physician's assistant as standard of care in the nursing home. Established a standardized approach to quality care through organized committee structure. Teaches medical students and residents about long-term care. Serves on multiple nonprofit boards of directors.
Sabine von Preyss-Friedman, MD, CMD
▸ Leon Sullivan Health Care Center/University of Washington
Led establishment of a comprehensive palliative care/end-of-life program addressing the special needs of ethnically diverse patients. Encouraged creation of facility committees that resulted in improved patient quality of life. Co-coordinated a comprehensive wound–care/prevention program.
Ernestine Wright, MD, CMD
▸ Stella Maris Inc.
Active in utilization review of skilled care patients and on a wound team and the quality improvement committee. Helped plan and participated in local wellness fair. Conducted interviews about dementia for local television news.
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