CSAC Bios 

Consensus Standards Approval Committee Bios

Roster and Bios (PDF)

John B. Bulger, DO, (Chair) is the chief medical officer of Geisinger Health Plan located in Danville, Pennsylvania. He has been with the Geisinger Health System since completing his internal medicine residency at PCOM in 1998. He has led clinical, operational and education programs at Geisinger. These include director of hospital medicine, program director of the osteopathic internal medicine residency, associate chief academic officer and chief quality officer. Dr. Bulger is a recognized leader in quality and patient safety and serves on regional and national groups aimed at improving the quality of medical care.

Dr. Edward Septimus, (Vice-Chair) is the current Vice President for Research and Infectious Diseases Hospital Corporation of America (HCA). Dr. Septimus received his medical degree from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston and his postgraduate training in internal medicine and infectious diseases at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston. Dr. Septimus is board certified in both internal medicine and infectious diseases. He was the first recipient of the IDSA Annual Clinician Award. Dr. Septimus has served as co-chair of the NQF Patient Safety Committee and the NQF Leadership Consortium. He holds a faculty position as Clinical Professor at Texas A&M. He has published over 100 articles and chapters.

Ramsey Abdallah, MBA, CPHQ, PMP is a senior population healthcare leader with experience in program development, performance improvement, project management, and data analytics. Mr. Abdallah has experience overseeing quality measure portfolios and has ledmeasure development and implementation across large health systems. Mr. Abdallah is responsible for the governance of ambulatory quality metrics and champions process improvement to adopt electronic clinical quality measures (eCQMs). Mr. Abdallah is also responsible for adherence to quality reporting for the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) program and Medicare Shared Savings Program (MSSP) and oversees policy adoption for both programs.

Elizabeth Albers, MD is the assistant chief of Clinical Policy for California Public Employees’ Retirement System(CalPERS). Dr. Albers oversees key initiatives, including clinical quality improvement, behavioral health policy development, and pharmaceutical and benefit design programs. Before joining CalPERS, Dr. Albers spent 11 years with the Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) in California, working on performance measurement and quality improvement with Medicaid health plans. Prior to that role, Dr. Albers audited health plans and providers for contract compliance and quality of care and also worked as a forensic pathologist. Dr. Albers is a board-certified forensic and anatomic pathologist.

Dan Culica, MD has extensive expertise in medical care organization with consistent contributions to health care transformation through delivery system and payment reform. He has been involved in performance improvement projects and design of outcome measures for healthcare interventions. Dr. Culica is also immersed in the study of unwarranted variation in health, health care, utilization and costs state, nation and worldwide. He is genuinely dedicated to measurement science applicable to quality of care. Dr. Culica is also involved in population health, specifically urban community health. Half of his career has been spent in academic institutions as faculty and clinical environments as a surgeon. Dr. Culica has published more than 30 peer-reviewed articles and made over 30 presentations.

Dana Cyra, MA, CPHQ is the mother and caregiver of a 36-year-old woman with an intellectual disability who has been living successfully in a small home with one roommate for more than two years. Her daughter previously lived in multiple settings, including state institutions. Ms. Cyra is the Executive Director of Quality Improvement for Inclusa, an MCO providing Long Term Services and Supports in Wisconsin. Ms. Cyra is an active participant in a statewide Quality Workgroup, comprised of representatives from all Wisconsin LTSS MCOs. Ms. Cyra gained experience in research/measurement through previous work at the University of North Dakota and Federal Bureau of Prisons. She also has 25+ years of experience in long term care. Ms. Cyra is highly motivated to ensure there are meaningful measures of outcomes with the patient’s best interest in mind.

Melissa Danforth is the Vice President of Hospital Ratings at The Leapfrog Group, a Washington, DC based not-for-profit organization representing the nation’s largest employers and purchasers of health benefits working to make great leaps forward in the safety, quality, and value of healthcare. Ms. Danforth serves as member of Leapfrog’s senior leadership team informing Leapfrog’s strategic direction, engaging experts and stakeholders, and analyzing program results to engage purchasers and consumers and drive safety and quality improvements. Ms. Danforth manages Leapfrog’s various measurement and public reporting activities including the Leapfrog Hospital Survey, the Hospital Safety Score, and emerging ratings programs.

Karen Johnson, PhD specializes in improving healthcare quality through measurement science. She is the director of Quality and Measurement at the American Urological Association (AUA), where she oversees all measure development, maintenance, and quality improvement activities and supports measure implementation in AUA’s quality registry. In her previous role as senior director at National Quality Forum (NQF), Dr. Johnson led endorsement and measurement science activities and helped maintain NQF’s measure evaluation criteria and related processes and policies. In other previous roles, Dr. Johnson gained extensive experience in healthcare data analytics. She holds a PhD in gerontology and master’s degrees in mathematical sciences/statistics and applied sociology.

Kevin Kavanagh, MD, MS, FACS, is currently Board Chairman of Health Watch USASM, a Kentucky based patient advocacy and research organization. Health Watch USASM is a member of the National Quality Forum and has been designated as a “Community Leader” for Value-Driven Healthcare by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Dr. Kavanagh is an Associate Editor for the Journal of Patient Safety. On Aug. 20, 2014 Dr. Kavanagh became a CDC & ATSDR Honor Award Nominee. He has served on the 2014, 2015, 2017 and 2018 Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services’ Hospital-Acquired Condition (HAC) Reduction Program Technical Expert Panel (TEP) along with the AHRQ Standing Working Group for Quality Indicators for 2016 to 2017. He also service on the AHRQ for Health Care Effectiveness and Outcomes Research (HEOR) Study Section. He has published over 20 peer reviewed manuscripts on healthcare policy and/or healthcare associated infections. In addition, he has published letters in peer reviewed journals including the Journal of the American Medical Association and New England of Medicine. Dr. Kavanagh is also a frequent contributor to the Lexington Herald Leader on Healthcare Issues and was a monthly guest on the Jack Pattie Radio Show on health policy issues for almost 6 years.

Rebecca Kirch, JD, is Executive Vice President of Policy and Programs for the National Patient Advocate Foundation (NPAF), providing strategic focus and leadership in bringing patient and caregiver voices to the forefront of health reform efforts. As a leading health policy expert and advocate in her field, Ms. Kirch is dedicated to advancing person-centered policies and practices that put people at the heart of health care. Prior to joining NPAF, she served 15 years with the American Cancer Society and its advocacy affiliate, American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, directing development and execution of coordinated quality of life and survivorship research, policy, and advocacy activities.

Gerri Lamb, PhD, RN, FAAN is a research professor and the founding director of the Center for Interprofessional Practice, Education and Research (CIPER) at Arizona State University in Phoenix, Arizona. Dr. Lamb has served as co-chair of NQF's Care Coordination and Patient Experience and Function Committees since 2008 and co-chair of the Measure Applications Partnership (MAP) Post-Acute Long-Term Care Committee since 2012. Most recently, Dr. Lamb co-chaired the Leveraging Electronic Health Record (EHR)-Sourced Measures to Improve Care Communication and Care Coordination Workgroup. In addition to her multiple co-chair and special workgroup roles, Dr. Lamb has served as a national content expert on care coordination for NQF.

R. Sean Morrison, MD is the Ellen and Howard C. Katz professor and chair of the Brookdale Department of Geriatrics and Palliative Medicine and system chair of Geriatrics and Palliative Care for the Mount Sinai Health System. He is also the Director of the National Palliative Care Research Center, a national organization devoted to increasing the evidence base of palliative care in the United States(U.S.). Dr. Morrison has served as co-chair of NQF's MAP Hospital Workgroup and the Geriatrics and Palliative Care Standing Committee.

Kelly Nedrow, JD is the director of the American Federation of Teachers’ (AFT)healthcare division and serves as lead advisor to AFT’s President, Randi Weingarten, on health and healthcare issues. Ms. Nedrow's prior roles include president and CEO of The Center for Balanced Living, a facility specializing in treatment of eating disorders; CEO; Deputy Executive Officer (DEO); and a staff representative for the Ohio Nurses Association. She is also a licensed attorney whose practice has included representation of healthcare professionals on matters involving contracts and other issues. Outside of work, Ms. Nedrow is a certified instructor in yoga, meditation, and Reiki.

Jeffrey Susman, MD, is a Professor at the Northeast Ohio Medical University College of Medicine, where he served as Dean and Vice President from 2010 through 2017. Dr. Susman graduated from Dartmouth, served in Nebraska as Associate Dean for Primary Care and was Chair, Department of Family Medicine, University of Cincinnati. He was on the Steering Committee of the Cincinnati RWJ Aligning Forces for Quality and Akron Community Health Initiatives. Dr. Susman has had funding from NIMH and AHRQ investigating primary care mental health issues. He has served as Chair of the AAFP Commission on Quality and Practice. He currently serves on the NQF Behavioral Health and Substance Use Standing Committee and CMS Technical Expert Panel for Pain Management.

Adam Thompson, MPH is a patient advocate and practice facilitator supporting health systems and communities to improve outcomes. Mr. Thompson holds a bachelor’s degree in theology from Georgetown University and a master’s degree in public health from the Jefferson College of Population Health. Mr. Thompson was the 2010 recipient of the Leadership in Quality Award from the Center for Quality Improvement and Innovation (CQII) and the HIV/AIDS Bureau. He has served as a member of NQF’s Infectious Diseases and Primary Care and Chronic Illness Standing Committees and also serves on the Board of Directors.