Featured Speakers 

The following people will be speaking at the 2013 Annual Conference and Membership Meeting:

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Andy AmsterAndy Amster

Andy Amster is the Director of the Center for Healthcare Analytics at Kaiser Permanente’s national Program Offices. In this capacity, he is responsible for establishing the strategic direction for quality measurement, evaluation, and reporting throughout the Kaiser Permanente Program nationwide. His work involves managing relationships with key groups within Kaiser Permanente’s Program Offices, including member marketing, finance, Information Technology, and employer/purchaser analytics, and service analytics, as well as the quality improvement and analysis departments in the eight Kaiser Permanente Regions. He coordinates the preparation and publication of analyses reflecting all facets of care, including clinical safety, effectiveness, efficiency, timeliness, patient-centeredness, and equitable care for the Kaiser Foundation Health Plan/Hospital Board of Directors, and he represents Kaiser Permanente on many external quality measurement and policy groups. Andy’s background is in epidemiology and public health. He completed his undergraduate work at Pomona College in Claremont, CA, and his graduate work in epidemiology at the UCLA School of Public Health.

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Mary Barton, MD, MPPMary Barton

Mary Barton, MD, MPP oversees the development, use and maintenance of techniques NCQA uses to evaluate health care quality. She ensures the scientific integrity of NCQA measurement and research. She also leads NCQA in winning and executing health care quality measurement contracts for federal and state governments. Prior to NCQA, Dr. Barton worked for the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), where she was the scientific director of the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF). She supported and provided oversight for the methodological, evidence review and recommendation-making work of the USPSTF. Before joining AHRQ, she was an assistant professor at Harvard Medical School, where she performed clinical epidemiology and health services research related to cancer screening and prevention in terms of access, test performance and outcomes. Dr. Barton trained in primary care internal medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston and completed a general medicine research fellowship at Harvard. Dr. Barton has a clinical interest in and has presented widely about the performance of the clinical breast examination. She is a member of the American College of Physicians and the Society of General Internal Medicine.

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David Blumenthal, MD, MPPDavid Blumenthal

David Blumenthal, MD, MPP, is president of The Commonwealth Fund, a national philanthropy engaged in independent research on health and social policy issues.

Dr. Blumenthal is formerly the Samuel O. Thier Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and Chief Health Information and Innovation Officer at Partners Healthcare System in Boston. He is also chairman of The Commonwealth Fund Commission on a High Performance Health System. From 2009 to 2011, he served as the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology.

Previously, Dr. Blumenthal was a practicing primary care physician, director of the Institute for Health Policy, and professor of medicine and health policy at Massachusetts General Hospital/Partners Healthcare System and Harvard Medical School. He is a member of the Institute of Medicine and a former board member and national correspondent for the New England Journal of Medicine. He has also served on the staff of the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Health and Scientific Research; is the founding chairman of AcademyHealth, the national organization of health services researchers; and a trustee of the University of Pennsylvania Health System.

Dr. Blumenthal received his undergraduate, medical, and public policy degrees from Harvard University and completed his residency in internal medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital.

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Craig Brammer

Craig Brammer is Chief Executive Officer of the combined operations of the Greater Cincinnati Health Council, the Health Collaborative and HealthBridge. As CEO, Brammer will be responsible for overseeing the strategy and coordination of the community’s health improvement initiatives.

Mr. Brammer was previously the Director of the Beacon Community Program in the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, which is part of the U.S. Department for Health and Human Services. The Beacon Community Program is a federally funded project to increase the quality, efficiency and sustainability of health care through health information technology (health IT). He was familiar with the Greater Cincinnati health care community from previous positions.

Prior to serving in the federal government, he worked at the Health Collaborative where he was the Director of the local Aligning Forces for Quality (AF4Q) program grant, the signature health care improvement initiative of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. He also holds a faculty position at the University of Cincinnati.

Brammer earned his Masters in Organizational Behavior at the University of Cincinnati. He has authored numerous studies on health policy, health IT, performance measurement and quality improvement.

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Peter Briss, MD

Peter Briss, MD serves as the Medical Director of CDC’s National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion. He has been with CDC and the Commissioned Corps of the US Public Health Service for more than 20 years. He has participated in a broad range of cross-disciplinary research and service particularly involving systematic reviews, evidence-informed practice, program evaluation, policy analysis, and research translation. He has applied these interests across a broad range of health and behavioral topics ranging from health care to community prevention. He has participated in public health teaching, practice, and research at state and federal levels in the U.S. and internationally.

Dr. Briss received his medical degree and training in internal medicine and pediatrics at the Ohio State University and his MPH in Health Management and Policy from the University of Michigan. He completed training in epidemiology and preventive medicine at CDC, is board certified in internal medicine and preventive medicine, and continues to serve as an active clinician at Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta. He has authored or coauthored approximately 90 professional publications and coedited the Guide to Community Preventive Services.

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Christine Cassel, MDChristine Cassel

Christine Cassel, MD, a leading expert in geriatric medicine, medical ethics and quality of care, is President and CEO of the American Board of Internal Medicine and the ABIM Foundation. She is board certified in internal medicine and geriatric medicine.

Dr. Cassel is past President of the American Federation for Aging Research and the American College of Physicians. She also formerly served as Dean of the School of Medicine and Vice President for Medical Affairs at Oregon Health & Science University, Chair of the Department of Geriatrics and Adult Development at Mount Sinai School of Medicine and Chief of General Internal Medicine at the University of Chicago.

Dr. Cassel is one of 20 scientists chosen by United States President Barack Obama to serve on the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) and is co-Chair and physician leader of a PCAST report to the President on future directions of health information technology. A member of the Institute of Medicine (IOM) since 1992, she served on the IOM’s Comparative Effectiveness Research (CER) Committee and the IOM committees that wrote the influential reports, “To Err is Human” and “Crossing the Quality Chasm.” She chaired major IOM reports on public health (2002) and on palliative care (1997). In 2009 and 2010, Modern Healthcare named Dr. Cassel among the 50 most powerful people in health care. An active scholar and lecturer, she is the author or co-author of 14 books and more than 200 journal articles on geriatric medicine, aging, bioethics and health policy.

A graduate of the University of Chicago, Dr. Cassel received her medical degree from the University of Massachusetts Medical School. She is the recipient of numerous honorary degrees and awards of distinction, including honorary Fellowship in the Royal College of Medicine of England and the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, as well as Mastership in the American College of Physicians.

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Patrick Conway, MD, MScPatrick Conway

Patrick Conway, MD, MSc, is Chief Medical Officer for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and Director of the Center for Clinical Standards and Quality. This office is responsible for all quality measures for CMS, value-based purchasing programs, quality improvement programs in all 50 states, clinical standards and survey and certification of Medicare and Medicaid health care providers across the nation, and all Medicare coverage decisions for treatments and services. The office budget exceeds $1.5 billion annually and is a major force for quality and transformation across Medicare, Medicaid, CHIP, and the U.S. healthcare system. Previously, he was Director of Hospital Medicine and an Associate Professor at Cincinnati Children's Hospital. He was also AVP Outcomes Performance, responsible for leading measurement, including the electronic health record measures, and facilitating improvement of health outcomes across the health care system.

Previously, he was Chief Medical Officer at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) in the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation. In 2007-08, he was a White House Fellow assigned to the Office of Secretary in HHS and the Director of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. As Chief Medical Officer, he had a portfolio of work focused primarily on quality measurement and links to payment, health information technology, and policy, research, and evaluation across the entire Department.

He also served as Executive Director of the Federal Coordinating Council on Comparative Effectiveness Research coordinating the investment of the $1.1 billion for CER in the Recovery Act. He was a Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar and completed a Master's of Science focused on health services research and clinical epidemiology at the University of Pennsylvania and Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. Previously, he was a management consultant at McKinsey & Company, serving senior management of mainly health care clients on strategy projects. He has published articles in journals such as JAMA, New England Journal of Medicine, Health Affairs, and Pediatrics and given national presentations on topics including health care policy, quality of care, comparative effectiveness, hospitalist systems, and nurse staffing.

He is a practicing pediatric hospitalist, completed pediatrics residency at Harvard Medical School's Children's Hospital Boston, and graduated with High Honors from Baylor College of Medicine.

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Maureen Corry, MPHMaureen Corry

Maureen Corry, MPH, has 30 years of experience as a researcher, educator, advocate, and policy analyst focusing on maternal and newborn health promotion and maternity care quality improvement. Ms. Corry joined Childbirth Connection as executive director in 1995 and has positioned the organization as a powerful and effective advocate for evidence-based maternity care and maternity care quality improvement.

In 2007, Ms. Corry led efforts to launch Childbirth Connection’s Transforming Maternity Care initiative focused on improving maternity care quality and value through broad health system improvement. This work resulted in the 2010 release of two direction-setting reports, “2020 Vision for a High-Quality, High-Value Maternity Care System” and “Blueprint for Action,” published in Women’s Health Issues. It also resulted in the establishment of a public-private multistakeholder partnership to implement blueprint recommendations to improve maternity care, quality, and value.

Ms. Corry is currently a member of the National Quality Forum’s (NQF) Board of Directors and serves as vice chair of NQF’s Consumer Council. She also served as co-chair of the Steering Committee for NQF’s National Voluntary Consensus Standards for Perinatal Care project. She is a consumer representative on the American Medical Association Provider Consortium for Performance Improvement, and is a member of the Consumer Advisory Council of the National Commission for Quality Assurance.

Ms. Corry received her master’s degree in public health from Yale School of Public Health in health services administration.

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James Feldman, MD, MPH, FACEPJames Feldman

James Feldman, MD, MPH, FACEP is Vice Chair for Research in the Department of Emergency Medicine, Boston Medical Center and Professor of Emergency Medicine at the Boston University School of Medicine. He graduated from Harvard University (1976), the Albert Einstein College of Medicine (1980) and Boston University School of Public Health (2006, Epidemiology and Biostatistics). He completed residency training in Internal Medicine at Boston City Hospital (1983) and has been a member of the faculty in the Department of Emergency Medicine since 1983. Dr. Feldman is board certified in Internal Medicine and Emergency Medicine. Dr. Feldman was President of the Massachusetts College of Emergency Physicians (MACEP, 2008-9). Among other professional activities, he has served on state and national organizations focused on quality measurement and quality measures development including the AMA Physician Consortium for Performance Improvement (MMS member 2006-present, Emergency Medicine Work Group 2006), member Massachusetts State Quality Advisory Committee (SQAC) 2011-3. He Chairs the Committee on the Quality of Medical Practice for the Massachusetts Medical Society. The recipient of several teaching and academic awards including being named Senior Reviewer for the Annals of Emergency Medicine (2009-12), he recently received the Pinnacle Award from MACEP for his contributions to emergency medical care in Massachusetts (2012) and the Mark E. Weinstein (2012) award for contributions to regional emergency medical services.

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Susan Frampton, PhDSusan Frampton

Susan Frampton, PhD is the President of Planetree and has worked with the organization for over a decade. Planetree is a not-for-profit consultation and membership organization, working with a growing network of hospitals and continuing care communities around the world to implement Planetree’s comprehensive patient-resident-centered model of care, resulting in improvements in both clinical and operational outcomes.

Dr. Frampton has authored numerous publications, the most recent including a series on patient-centered care in the American Journal of Nursing, the International Health Federation Journal, Patient-Centered Care Improvement Guide, a web-based document that has been downloaded over 30,000 times, and the edited collection Putting Patients First, Second Edition (Jossey-Bass Publishing, 2008). The first edition of Putting Patients First (Jossey-Bass Publishing, 2003) won the ACHE Hamilton Book of the Year Award in 2004.

Dr. Frampton has served as a member of the National Quality Forum’s (NQF) National Priorities Partnership (NPP) since 2009, identifying strategies to improve safety, quality and patient-centered outcomes for the U.S. Healthcare System. She has participated on The Joint Commission’s Expert Advisory Panel on culturally competent patient-centered care standards, the National Quality Forum’s Care Coordination Steering Team and the Institute of Medicine’s review panel for their 2009 publication on integrative medicine.

In addition to speaking internationally on culture change, quality and safety, and the patient experience, she has presented keynotes on designing patient-centered practices in acute care, continuing care, and ambulatory medicine settings for the Healthcare Design Symposium, Veterans Health Administration and the World Health Organization. Additionally, Dr. Frampton was honored in 2009, when she was named one of “20 People who Make Healthcare Better” by Health Leaders Magazine.

Dr. Frampton serves as a faculty member for the Interagency Institute for Federal Health Care Executives (Arlington, VA) each year, and speaks internationally on the connections between patient-centered care, quality and patient safety.

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Richard Hanke, PhDRichard Hanke

Richard Hanke received his doctorate in Leadership and Policy Studies in Educational Administration and, after having a successful career in public education, now has a consultancy working with school districts in leadership development and leadership coaching. After a near tragedy in his family in a local hospital that ultimately had a positive result, Dr. Hanke has used what he learned from the experience and his background in leadership development to work actively in the area of patient-centered care, patient and family engagement, and quality and patient safety within the hospital setting and healthcare industry. He led the development of a successful and highly-recognized patient partnership council in a local setting with tremendous support and leadership provided by the president and Planetree Coordinator of the hospital. He presently serves on the Quality Committee of the Cadence Health. Dr. Hanke has provided presentations of his experience at other local, regional and national meetings. He served on the Planetree Designation Committee as the patient advocate/representative. He presently serves at the national level on the Patient and Family Engagement Network of the Partnership for Patients and the (Re)admissions action team for the National Priorities Partnership.

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David L. KnowltonDavid L. Knowlton

David L. Knowlton has been a leader and advisor in health issues in New Jersey and nationally since 1977. Mr. Knowlton founded and served as Executive Director of the Health Care Payers Coalition of New Jersey; a non‐profit corporation representing business and labor organization who provide healthcare. He currently serves as a permanent member of the Coalition’s Board and Executive Committee. He has served as a Vice President of the Medical Inter‐Insurance Exchange (MIIX), a medical malpractice company owned by the Medical Society of New Jersey. Mr. Knowlton is currently the President and CEO of the New Jersey Health Care Quality Institute. Founded by the Coalition, the Institute is dedicated to eliminating medical errors and improving health care quality.

Mr. Knowlton currently serves as Chairman of the Leapfrog Group, a nationally recognized foundation committed to reduce medical errors and improve the quality of patient care throughout the United States. He has served as a member of multiple National Quality Forum (NQF) Steering Committees. Mr. Knowlton currently serves on the Commissioner’s Quality Improvement Advisory Committee. He was Vice Chairman of the Health Decisions, a foundation dedicated to improving the caliber of and access to quality end‐of‐life care and has been a principal presenter and author on the subject of “Managed Care and HIV” for the Kaiser Family Foundation AIDS Symposium.

Mr. Knowlton holds undergraduate and graduate degrees in psychology and education from University of Massachusetts (Amherst) and Trinity College (Hartford, Connecticut) respectively.

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David Lansky, PhD

David Lansky, PhD, is the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Pacific Business Group on Health (PBGH) and directs its efforts to improve the affordability and availability of high quality health care. Since 2008, David Lansky has led the coalition of 50 large employers and health care purchasers representing over five million Americans, including CalPERS, Wells Fargo, Intel, Safeway, Chevron, GE, Walmart and the University of California. A nationally-recognized expert in accountability, quality measurement and health IT, Lansky has served as a board member or advisor to numerous health care programs, including the National Quality Forum (NQF), National Priorities Partnership (NPP), the Joint Commission, the National Patient Safety Foundation, the Leapfrog Group, and the Medicare Beneficiary Education Advisory Panel. He is now the purchaser representative on the federal Health IT Policy Committee and chairs its Quality Measures Workgroup. David Lansky holds a PhD degree from the University of California, Berkeley.

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Kevin Larsen, MD

Kevin Larsen, MD is Medical Director of Meaningful Use at the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT. In that role he is responsible for coordinating the clinical quality measures for Meaningful Use Certification and overseas the development of the Population Health Tool. Prior to working for the federal government he was Chief Medical Informatics Officer and Associate Medical Director at Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He is also an Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of Minnesota. Dr. Larsen graduated from the University of Minnesota Medical School and was a resident and chief medical resident at Hennepin County Medical Center. He is a general internist and teacher in the medical school and residency programs. His research includes health care financing for people living in poverty, computer systems to support clinical decision making, and health literacy. In Minneapolis he was also the Medical Director for the Center for Urban Health, a hospital, community collaboration to eliminate health disparities. He served on a number of state and national committees in informatics, data standards and health IT.

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Michael Lepore

Michael Lepore is Planetree’s Director of Quality, Research, & Evaluation and an Adjunct Assistant Professor in Health Services, Policy & Practice at Brown University. Dr. Lepore is currently teaching an Aging Policy & Services course for undergraduate and graduate students. A sociologist by training, Dr. Lepore transitioned to health services research after working for several years as a nursing assistant in long-term care. His recent research examines healthcare quality, access, and equity, with publications in The Gerontologist, Journal of Palliative Medicine, and Archives of Internal Medicine addressing racial differences in hospice utilization, the socio-economic and geographic patterns of nursing home closures, and the relationship between nursing home staffing and the prevalence of hospice use. Much of Dr. Lepore’s current work focuses on nursing home culture change, with particular attention to the relationships between culture change practices and governmental reimbursement. With Planetree, Dr. Lepore’s work focuses on implementing and evaluating patient-centered care across the continuum of healthcare settings internationally. Recent international contributions include invited lectures at the Brazilian Congress on Quality in Health Care, and both the Latin American and Brazilian Congresses on Hospital Hospitality, as well as the launch of an USAID-funded African Patient-Centered Care Initiative, a regional effort to improve healthcare quality in Sub-Saharan Africa. Starting in 2013, Dr. Lepore also is directing the newly funded Harvey Picker Center of Innovation and Applied Research in Long-Term Care which will provide annual research grants to support person-centered long-term care.

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Shari M. Ling, MDShari M. Ling

Shari M. Ling, MD is currently the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), Deputy Chief Medical Officer serving in the Center for Clinical Standards and Quality (CCSQ), responsible for assisting the CMS Chief Medical Officer in the Agency's pursuit of higher quality health care, healthier populations, and lower cost through quality improvement. Dr. Ling long-standing focus is on the achievement of meaningful health outcomes through delivery of high quality beneficiary-centered care across all care settings, with a special interest in the care of persons with multiple chronic conditions and functional limitations, and reducing health disparities.

Dr. Ling has served as the lead coordinator and facilitator of the CCSQ Measures Forum. Dr. Ling represents CMS on the Health and Human Services (HHS) Multiple Chronic Conditions workgroup, and the National Quality Forum Measures Application Partnership Post-acute Care/Long-term Care workgroup, and chairs the Measures and Data sources sub-workgroup for the HHS Action Plan for Healthcare Associated Infection (HAI) Prevention in Long-term Care facilities. Dr. Ling also serves as the clinical sub-group lead for the HHS National Alzheimer's Project Act.

Dr. Ling is a Geriatrician and Rheumatologist who received her medical training at Georgetown University School of Medicine where she graduated as a member of the Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Society. Dr. Ling received her clinical training in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology at Georgetown University Medical Center, and completing Geriatric Medicine studies at Johns Hopkins University., remaining on faculty at Johns Hopkins for 5 years, after which she joined the Intramural Research Program of the National Institutes of Health at the National Institute on Aging as a Staff Clinician for 8 years studying human aging and age-associated chronic diseases with attention to musculoskeletal conditions and mobility function.

Dr. Ling continues to serve as a part-time faculty member in the Division of Geriatric Medicine and Gerontology at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, and in the Division of Rheumatology, Allergy and Clinical Immunology at the University of Mary-land. Dr. Ling volunteers at the Veterans Administration Medical Center in Baltimore. She is a Gerontologist who received her training in Direct Service from the Ethel Percy Andrus Gerontology Center, at the University of Southern California, and served as the co-director of the Andrus Older Adult Counseling Center.

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Maggie Lohnes, RN, CPHIMS, FHIMSS

Maggie Lohnes, RN, CPHIMS, FHIMSS manages clinical quality measurement strategy at McKesson Corporation. Her prior experience included direct critical care nursing, health information management, clinical informatics and quality, healthcare administration and public policy. Former chair of HIMSS Public Policy Committee, Maggie is vice chair of HIMSS Quality, Cost, Safety Committee. She previously worked as healthcare principal at the MITRE Corporation, clinical information management administrator at MultiCare Health System, Tacoma, Washington, and IS manager at Huntington Hospital, Pasadena, California. Maggie received her RN degree from Los Angeles County/USC Medical Center, BA English Literature from UCLA and graduate studies at University of Washington.

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Peter McGough, MD, FAAFPPeter McGough

Peter McGough, MD, FAAFP serves as the Medical Director of the UW Neighborhood Clinics (UWNC). He is responsible for overseeing all clinical services provided within UWNC, and for implementing clinical quality improvement programs to assure that services remain current with the best available evidence and research. Dr. McGough also serves as a clinical liaison with the various divisions of UW Medicine to assure that UWNC patients have access to the best specialty and diagnostic care available, and serves on the UW Physicians Board and Executive Committees. He currently serves on the Board of the Puget Sound Health Alliance, which is a state wide collaborative working on initiatives to improve health care quality. Dr. McGough is a board certified family physician who has been in active practice in the Seattle area since 1982. He is engaged in teaching medical students and residents, as well as graduate students in health care policy and administration, and is a Clinical Professor of Family Medicine at the UW School of Medicine. Dr. McGough served as the President of the Washington State Medical Association in 1994-1995. He has been active in health care policy & legislative activities for over 20 years, advocating for universal access to affordable health care and maintaining an active interest in ethical and end-of-life issues.

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Elizabeth MitchellElizabeth Mitchell

Elizabeth Mitchell serves as CEO of the Maine Health Management Coalition, an employer-led, multi-stakeholder coalition whose mission is to improve the value of healthcare services. Ms. Mitchell also serves as the CEO of the Maine Health Management Coalition Foundation which is dedicated to performance measurement and public reporting and engaging the public in the use of cost and quality information. The Coalition is actively engaged in payment reform and health system redesign with its many partners. Ms. Mitchell serves on the Board of the National Quality Forum and the National Business Coalition on Health and Chair of its Government Affairs Committee; as Chair of the Board of the Network for Regional Health Improvement; and on the Coordinating Committee of NQF’s Measure Application Partnership. Ms. Mitchell also serves as chair of Maine’s Chartered Value Exchange, a convener of Maine’s Aligning Forces for Quality project, and on the Advisory Council of the Maine Quality Forum. Prior to being appointed CEO, Ms. Mitchell worked for MaineHealth, Maine’s largest integrated health system where she led several transparency and quality improvement efforts. She served two terms in the Maine State Legislature, where she chaired the Health and Human Services Committee and has held posts at the National Academy for State Health Policy, and London’s Nuffield Trust. Ms. Mitchell was selected for an Atlantic Fellowship in Public Policy by the Commonwealth Fund and the British Council. While in the UK, she completed the International Health Leadership Program at Cambridge University’s Judge School of Management, while pursuing graduate studies at the London School of Economics. Ms. Mitchell lives in Portland, Maine with her husband and four children.

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Frank Opelka, MD, FACS

Frank Opelka, MD FACS is the Executive Vice President of HealthCare and Medical Education Redesign for the Louisiana State University Systems Office. The LSU Health Care System is a 10 hospital safety net health system providing care to the underinsured of Louisiana. He joined LSU in the spring of 2005. Dr. Opelka is the LSU Health Sciences Center's advocate for improving patients' health through quality improvement programs, the e-health record, LSU healthcare performance metrics, and e-prescription program. Dr. Opelka is a physician executive and a recognized national leader in surgical quality, patient safety, public reporting, and care & delivery system redesign for the surgical patient. He serves as an associate medical director in Washington DC for the American College of Surgeons in quality related matters. Dr. Opelka serves on numerous national alliances, initiatives and national committees for patient safety, quality improvement and in areas of health policy. Dr. Opelka serves within the National Quality Forum’s National Priority Partnership and the Measures Application Partnership. He works closely with the Brookings Institute as a member of the Quality Alliance Steering Committee, and the National Committee for Quality Assurance, the Agency for Health Research and Quality. Dr. Opelka founded the American College of Surgeon’s Surgical Quality Alliance which pulls together over 22 surgical specialties to improve surgical quality, optimize the surgical patients’ voice and experience, provide efficient care, and increase access to care. Dr. Opelka is a national recognized and published expert in colon and rectal surgeon.

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Lee Partridge

Lee Partridge is a senior health policy advisor at the National Partnership for Women and Families, where she specializes in performance measurement and quality improvement issues with special reference to lower income individuals and families. Her previous experience includes ten years as chief of staff for the National Association of State Medicaid Directors and nine as the Medicaid Director for the District of Columbia. She has served on several performance measurement steering committees of the National Quality Forum (NQF), and, in July 2012 began a two-year term as a member of its Consensus Standards Approval Committee (CSAC). She is a member of the NCQA Clinical Program Committee, served on the NCQA Patient-centered Medical Home Advisory Panel and co-chaired the NCQA Specialty Practice Recognition Committee. She is also a member of the American Academy of Pediatrics Medical Home Project Advisory Panel and the AHRQ National Advisory Committee special subcommittee identifying quality measures appropriate for Medicaid eligible adults. In 2010 she was selected as the first public member of the Board of the Council of Medical Specialty Societies. She is a graduate of Wellesley College and a resident of the District of Columbia.

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Sarah Sampsel, MPHSarah Sampsel

Sarah Sampsel, MPH joined New Mexico Health Connections as Senior Director of Quality in August, 2012. New Mexico Health Connections is a new entry into the health insurance market and is organizing to compete on the New Mexico Health Insurance Exchange in October 2013. In her role, Ms. Sampsel is responsible for developing and implementing the CO-OP’s Quality Improvement Program and achieving and maintaining NCQA Accreditation. Immediately prior to joining New Mexico Health Connections, Ms. Sampsel had been employed by WellPoint, Inc. since 2008. Most recently she served as a Business Change Director for WellPoint’s Center for Quality Measurement and Improvement (CQMI). In this role, Sarah supported the Staff Vice President for Clinical Quality in strategy, coordination and communication among the CQMI team. Prior to this role, Ms. Sampsel was the Health Index Strategies Director for WellPoint where she managed the organization’s Member and State Health Indices. These indices allowed WellPoint to assess and monitor the quality of care and improvements in health status for its’ members, employers and communities. In addition, Ms. Sampsel was responsible for the organization’s obesity strategy. Ms. Sampsel completed WellPoint Continuous Improvement Practitioner training in early 2011. Prior to joining WellPoint in November 2008, Ms. Sampsel held various performance measurement focused positions at the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA). In her roles, she was responsible for developing, implementing and maintaining HEDIS measures as well as managing research studies to support NCQA’s measure development activities. Priority areas for research and measurement activities have included: child health, obesity assessment and management, cardiovascular risk and complex co-morbidities, depression and other behavioral health care and back pain/spine care and supporting development of CMS Physician Quality Reporting metrics. Ms. Sampsel’s responsibilities also included project management for the Committee on Performance Measurement (CPM) and managing the development of a business plan to explore the development of evaluation products for health promotion services.

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David M. Shahian, MD

David M. Shahian, MD serves as Associate Director of the Codman Center for Clinical Effectiveness in Surgery and as Research Director for the Massachusetts General Hospital Center for Quality and Safety. Dr. Shahian received his medical degree from Harvard Medical School, completed his residency in the Department of Surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital, and subsequently was a fellow in Cardiovascular-Thoracic Surgery, at Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke's Medical Center in Chicago. Dr. Shahian was on staff at the Lahey Clinic for 24 years, where he practiced adult cardiac and general thoracic surgery and served as Chairman of the Department of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery until 2004. Dr. Shahian was most recently Professor and Chairman of the Department of Surgery and a member of the Board of Trustees at the Caritas St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center. Dr. Shahian’s research over the last decade has primarily focused in the area of outcomes research, quality assessment and improvement, and related health policy issues. He has been a national leader in the area of cardiac quality analysis and reporting, serving as Chair of the Massachusetts Cardiac Care Quality Commission. He has served as a member of the Technical Advisory Committee for the National Quality Forum (NQF) Cardiac Surgery Project; the NQF Steering Committee on Composite Measures; the NSQIP Measurement and Evaluation Committee; and the AMA PCPI. Dr. Shahian was Chair of the Society of Thoracic Surgeons (STS) Task Force on Cardiac Risk Models, and he currently serves as Chair of the STS Quality Measurement Task Force.

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Sharon SprengerSharon Sprenger

Sharon Sprenger is the Director, External Measurement Relations, Division of Healthcare Quality Evaluation, at The Joint Commission. She serves as the primary representative in external efforts to make credible, evidence-based performance measurement data readily available and useful to the public, providers, purchasers, oversight organizations and other interested parties. In her tenure at The Joint Commission, she has been responsible for performance measure identification, evaluation, pilot testing, and implementation activities for core measures, disease-specific care certification, and international initiatives as applicable to all Joint Commission accreditation programs and settings. Ms. Sprenger has participated on numerous national groups and currently serves as the private co-lead for the Adult Immunization Measures Workgroup - National Adult Immunization Summit, Technical Expert Panels for CMS Long Term Care Hospitals and Inpatient Rehabilitation Hospitals Quality Measures, and liaison for the American Medical Association (AMA) Physician Consortium for Performance Improvement. Ms. Sprenger has a Master’s in Public Administration with a concentration in Health Services Administration from Roosevelt University, a Bachelor’s of Science in Medical Records Administration and an Associate’s Applied Science in Medical Records Technology from Ferris State University. Ms. Sprenger is a Registered Health Information Administrator (RHIA) and is a Certified Professional in Healthcare Quality (CPHQ).

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Ann WattAnn Watt

Ann Watt is an Associate Director in the Division of Quality Measurement and Research at The Joint Commission. In this position she is responsible for the development and maintenance of standardized performance measures for all of the Joint Commission’s performance measurement products. Ms. Watt is also a leader in The Joint Commission’s initiative to retool performance measures for use with the electronic health record. Prior positions at The Joint Commission have included responsibility for development and maintenance of standardized performance measures related to certification products as well as grant related work on performance measure reliability and impact of performance measurement. Ms. Watt is a Registered Health Information Administrator. Her diverse professional experience includes administration of key quality functions in a number of acute and chronic healthcare organizations, as well as tenure with the Illinois Foundation for Quality Health Care, the quality improvement organization for Illinois. She possesses extensive background in performance measurement, performance improvement, utilization and case management, risk management, infection control, and medical staff administration. Ms. Watt received her bachelor’s degree in Health Information Management from the University of Illinois, and obtained a Master’s in Business Administration degree from DePaul University, Chicago, Illinois.

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Marla J. Weston, PhD, RN, FAANMarla J. Weston

Marla J. Weston, PhD, RN, FAAN, a nurse leader with nearly 30 years of diverse management experience in health care operations, is the chief executive officer (CEO) of the American Nurses Association (ANA) and the American Nurses Foundation (ANF). Prior to joining ANA, Dr. Weston served at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, in the Veterans Healthcare Administration (VHA) first as program director in the Office of Nursing Services, and then as deputy chief officer in the department’s Workforce Management and Consulting Office. She oversaw policies, programs, and initiatives that supported the employees at all VHA facilities across the country. She also had responsibility for improving nurse retention, and for promoting nursing as an attractive career choice. Earlier in her career, Dr. Weston served for four years as the executive director of the Arizona Nurses Association. During her tenure, membership increased 24 percent, while revenues rose 109 percent. Dr. Weston graduated magna cum laude from Indiana University of Pennsylvania with a bachelor’s of science degree in nursing. She graduated summa cum laude from Arizona State University, with a master’s of science degree in nursing. She earned her doctoral degree at the University of Arizona, where she received an outstanding dissertation award.

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