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proudly Serving Central Florida, North Central Florida & Volusia-Brevard

The Truth about US Healthcare New local radio show, Healthcare Now, fills important niche “In America, we’ve practiced sick care. But in the future, we need to be practicing preventive and wellness care. How do you transition from one to the other? That’s what we’re trying to help people understand.” – LARRY JONES, co-founder of Heathcare Now radio show in Orlando.





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The Final Piece of the Puzzle? “You have to live for your patients”


Yasser A. Khaled, MD, Director, Orlando Health Cancer Institute Bone Marrow Transplant & Cellular Therapy

FEATURES 4 COVER The Truth about US Healthcare 5 PHYSICIAN SPOTLIGHT Yasser A. Khaled, MD, Director, Orlando Health Cancer Institute Bone Marrow Transplant & Cellular Therapy 6 HEALTHCARE LEADER. ‘Rising Star’ Shines: UF researcher Erika Moore, PhD, named Forbes 30 under 30 healthcare experts to watch in 2021 7 EOCC Healthcare Options for Small Business: EOCC has a Plan to Consider

10 Encouraging Optimism in Your Patients for Better Outcomes 12 Adult-use Legalization Laws not Associated with Adverse Impacts on Public Health 13 New Lung Cancer Screening Guidelines Doubles the Number of Potential Lives Saved 14 Want Better Medication Adherence? Make Accessibility and Service a Priority 15 ORLANDO GRAND ROUNDS 17 NORTH CENTRAL FLORIDA & VOLUSIA/BREVARD GRAND ROUNDS

9 What is Your Most Valuable Asset and How Do You Protect It?

PUBLISHER John Kelly | ————————————————————————————— AD SALES John Kelly, 407-701-7424 ————————————————————————————— EDITOR PL Jeter | ————————————————————————————— CREATIVE DIRECTOR Katy Barrett-Alley | ————————————————————————————— CONTRIBUTING WRITERS April Boykin, Dorothy Hardee, Janelle Hom, Lynne Jeter, Tarek Mekhail, MD, Mark Metrovich, Michael C. Patterson, Nick Trawinsk ————————————————————————————— UCF INTERN Brianna Kirby ————————————————————————————— CIRCULATION ————————————————————————————— All editorial submissions and press releases should be emailed to ————————————————————————————— Subscription requests or address changes should be emailed to

Orlando Medical News January 2021 is published monthly by K&J Kelly, LLC. ©2021 Orlando Medical News.all Rights Reserved. Reproduction in whole, or in part without written permission is prohibited. Orlando Medical News will assume no responsibility unsolicited materials.





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APRIL 2021

The Truth about US Healthcare New local radio show, Healthcare Now, fills important niche BY LYNNE JETER

On Saturday mornings, Larry Jones, John Kelly and “Dr. Mark” hit the airwaves on 950AM/94.9 FM – The Answer to discuss ways for doctors and patients to receive the best value for the healthcare dollar and a higher level of client satisfaction and outcomes.

IHP CEO Jones, executive director of the Integrated Independent Physicians Network (IPN), created the radio show with Kelly, publisher of Orlando Medical News, a business-to-business publication established in 2005 that routinely logs more than 300,000 page views monthly. “John and I were guests several times on American Adversaries (Radio Show) with Chris Hart, a Thursday drive-time radio program that takes call-ins,” said Jones. “Every time we did a show, it blew up their phone lines with people wanting to ask questions about healthcare. After the shows, we’d get calls at work from people wanting to know more.” After selling the concept to Salem Media Group (SMG), Kelly took the business reins of the Healthcare Now show. SMG, a national commercial radio media company, has 115 radio stations with varied program-

“Simply put, our goal is to provide our listeners with information that will help them better manage their healthcare and in turn, help them live a healthier life,” said Mark Chaet, MD, a pediatric surgeon better known as “Dr. Mark,” founder of Independent Healthcare Partners (IHP), and chief medical officer of the weekly show. “As for providers and payers, working with more informed clients will hopefully ‘up their game,’ making for a better healthcare delivery system.”

ming formats, such as Wall Street Business Network. “We were immediately well-received by listeners and advertisers,” said Kelly, also long-known as a high school basketball coach for Orange County Public Schools. “Like all new radio shows, we’re evolving our audience. ‘Frequent flyers’ routinely answer our Question of the Week or email comments to guide us.” Healthcare Now is marketing as an informative and interactive healthcare radio talk show, featuring guest healthcare leaders “with no softball questions,” noted Kelly, and educationally based for providers, patients/ consumers, and payers. As an example of information shared on the program, Jones told of a listener who had a sleep study prescribed for her. She said she was informed the copay for the study would be $1400. After searching her provider directory, she found the same study for a total cost of $400 with only an $80 copay through an independent physician. The most recent guest speaker at press time: Deborah German, MD, UCF founding dean of the University of Central Florida College of Medicine and UCF vice president for health affairs. Since 2006, German has chartered unprecedented advances in Central Florida’s medical community. Pete Paquette, director of operations, programming, and production for SMG-Orlando, said he’s getting great feedback from listeners. “We’re very pleased with the direction of the show,” he said. In fact, Healthcare Now’s popularity, with only 11 shows aired at press time, has caught the attention of syndicators, who are mulling recruiting the show for national syndication. The Salem Radio Network provides programming for some 3,000 affiliates. “The total mission of this program is to build educated healthcare consumers to where they know how to deal with their benefits, how to deal with their insurance company, how to seek care, how to maneuver and manipulate through this complex and confusing healthcare system,” said Jones. “Also, how to seek high quality care in a cost-effective manner. The real key is about finding the right care at the right time at the right place for an appropriate amount of money.” For example, the show represents all healthcare points-of-view. “But right now,” said Chaet, “independent systems deliver a better value for the healthcare dollar and a higher level of client satisfaction and outcomes.” Healthcare Now’s lucrative audience has a median age of 58, median income of more than $75,000,





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The Final Piece of the Puzzle? “You have to live for your patients” Yasser A. Khaled, MD, Director, Orlando Health Cancer Institute Bone Marrow Transplant & Cellular Therapy When he was a young boy growing up in Cairo, Yasser Khaled, MD, could look out the window of his family’s fifth-floor apartment down to the crowded city below. He could see the doctors, medical professionals and patients walking in and out of the Cancer Institute of Egypt across the street.

they have. You really get into the details of their lives and the tough times that they have every day.” This approach gives a doctor a level of experience that simply cannot be replicated any other way, he said. “I’ve treated 800 to 1,000 patients over my career. There is not a day of my (professional) life for the last 20 years that I haven’t seen a patient.” Dr. Khaled’s career has taken him from Egypt to New York, Virginia, Houston, Orlando and Memphis. In his most recent role as the founding medical director of the Blood and Marrow Transplant Center at Le Bonheur Health Care in Memphis, it became the first program in the Mid-South to introduce Chimeric Antigen Therapy (CAR-T). Shortly after that, it achieved the top ten percent rating in patient survival. Now, happily back in Orlando where he was earlier in his career, Khaled noted the first two patients to receive bone marrow transplants at Orlando Health Cancer Institute have gone home with their leukemia in remission. The patients, both women, had different challenges. The first, a 70-year-old did not have any family members who could make a marrow donation, so she received a donation through the national bone marrow registry. The second woman, 33, who coincidentally had been born at Orlando Health Orlando Regional Medical

You could say curiosity about medicine and cancer has been on his mind ever since. In addition to curiosity, however, there is an intensity within Dr. Khaled that comes out when he talks about his patients. "You have to be dedicated. You have to live for your patients,” said Khaled. “It’s the most important factor in achieving positive patient outcomes.” Dr. Khaled should know. It is this focus, this intensity that has helped him lead two other bone marrow transplant programs to the top ten percent in patient outcomes, according to the National Marrow Donor Program. And now as the Medical Director of the new Orlando Health Cancer Institute Bone Marrow Transplant & Cellular Therapy program, he is determined to do it again. It’s the final piece in the puzzle, making the Institute a comprehensive cancer therapy program, he said. “We can provide all the care for the patient from immune therapy or bone marrow transplant, clinical trials or treatment of any kind of cancer right here,” he said. “Our goal is to gradually reach Center of Excellence status in every aspect.” There are many different factors that go into reaching such a significant milestone. But according to Khaled, no factor is more important than the doctor’s accessibility to his patients and the continuity of care. Having the same doctor and team for the duration of the patient’s care is extremely important, he said. “Our field is different from any other field,” said Khaled. “You deal with those patients for almost a year. You don’t see that patient once or twice; you see them three of four times a week for a whole year. So, you get to know them, you get to know their families, you get to know their social lives, their hurdles, the complications





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Center, was in dire straits. “This was her last chance,” said Khaled. “Three previous lines of treatment didn’t work for her.” But, in mid-February, both women were able to ring the bell upon discharge, cancer free. “We provide care for many patients who have been refused care at other transplant centers around the country,” said Dr. Khaled. “They are among the highest risk transplant patients in the country. When the other transplant centers say, ‘no we cannot take you,’ we provide hope for the patient and provide a successful outcome of at least 50 percent for them, instead of zero percent when you don’t offer them therapy at all.” The ultimate goal for Dr. Khaled is to establish the program as one of the top centers in the country. He is both determined and confident he can do that. When he does, patients in Central Florida will have another option instead of travelling long distances to other centers where it will be more difficult to achieve the physician/patient partnership and continuity of care that Dr. Khaled believes are so important, and that experience shows really works.



‘Rising Star’ Shines UF researcher Erika Moore, PhD, named Forbes 30 under 30 healthcare experts to watch in 2021 University of Florida researcher Erika Moore, PhD, was recently named to Forbes magazine’s 30 Under 30 health care experts to watch in 2021. The 10th annual list recognizes 600 entrepreneurs, scientists, activists and entertainers who are changing the world.

What motivated you to focus on lupus?

The honor came as a surprise to Moore, 29, the Rhines Rising Star Larry Hench assistant professor of materials science & engineering in UF’s Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering. Moore is also a KL2 scholar in the UF Clinical and Translational Science Institute. She celebrated with a quick call to her family and a tweet, then it was back to work. Forbes noted Moore’s unique research on a form of lupus that primarily affects Black women. Her findings could be applied to any number of population segments based on race, age or gender. Moore’s achievements, chosen by Forbes’ editors and industry judges from thousands of nominations, places her among the world’s most impactful young entrepreneurs and game-changers. Moore answered a few questions recently about this important recognition and her work.

Has UF’s community helped your research?

The idea came when I was talking to a Johns Hopkins colleague at the gym one day about the contribution of sex, age and ethnicity or ancestry to our work. Since I’ve been at UF, it’s become a fascinating aspect of my group’s work. We started with lupus because systemic lupus erythematosus is one of the most disparate forms you can find. It’s like night and day differences between women who are minorities who get it and women who identify as Caucasian. Of 100 people who get it, 90 are women, and 76 of those 90 are going to be women of color.

Oh, yes. Before I moved here, I reached out to UF lupus expert Dr. Laurence Morel, (Laurence Morel, PhD, a professor in the UF department of pathology, immunology and laboratory medicine) who is now one of my mentors. I emailed her out of the blue, “Do you want to work with me on this?” and she responded, “Absolutely!” Through our conversations, we’ve combined my passion with her expertise. Since then, I’ve gained collaborators in the UF College of Medicine’s lupus clinic and faculty in UF’s Institute on Aging (including Mark Segal, MD, PhD, an assistant professor in the department of medicine; Thomas Pearson, MD, PhD, MPH, director of the college’s MD/PhD program; and Christiaan Leeuwenburgh, PhD, a professor in the department of aging and geriatric research. This is just another reason why UF is such fertile ground for me and my team.

Why has an engineer’s perspective on human cells attracted so much interest?

What will your team’s work mean for health care?

My background is in immunology and biomaterials — looking at how our immune system responds and recognizes biomaterials in our bodies — within the context of regenerative medicine. I’m investigating how we might get the immune system to help us recover better after injury. This becomes really critical as we age and as we develop other malignancies, such as cancer. But one large aspect of this research that is overlooked is the fact that personalized medicine plays a huge role in how each person’s body responds. The consideration of race, sex and age will help us understand diseases better and build better biomaterials for clinical applications.

We’re trying to close the loop between translational medicine at the (lab) bench and clinical data in the hospitals. We’re trying to connect that personalized medicine aspect with the consideration of age, sex and ethnicity to the models that we develop in the lab. Hopefully, this will help us learn more about the diseases we study and why certain populations respond divergently from others.

Why did you come to UF? Well, it was a combination of prayer and a visit that led me to believe, “I could grow here.” Both my chair, Michele Manuel, PhD, and Rolf E. Hummel Professor of Electronic Materials, and my dean, Cammy Abernathy, PhD, and a professor of materials science and engineering, are committed to diversity, whereas in general, academia really struggles with diversity in faculty. UF is a leader in this regard. The Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering has more African American women in tenure-track roles than any other university in the

Why are you developing many different drug and therapy models with a variety of human cells? Aren’t all human cells basically the same? Many researchers only really consider one sex, one ethnicity in their models, and that’s a really limited perspective. We know clinically that different populations respond differently, even if it’s the same drug or treatment. Take redheads for instance: They respond differently to pain medications. So, metabolically they are different. These differences must be considered. In fact, the National Institutes of Health mandate the consideration of sex.






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Healthcare Options for Small Business:

Virtual Office Hours EVERY MONDAY | 9:00 AM – 10:00 AM

Testimonial Tuesday on Location TUESDAY, APRIL 6 | 11:00 – 11:30 AM

EOCC has a Plan to Consider

At Sonny’s BBQ Alafaya Trail LIVE of Facebook

Misters & Sisters Great Lunch Adventures TUESDAY, APRIL 6 | 11:30 AM – 12:30 PM Sonny’s BBQ Alafaya Trail 855 N Alafaya Trail, Orlando, FL 32828


Healthcare Council Collaborative Virtual Panel Discussing & Networking

In 2018 restrictive government policy regarding Association Health Plans opened another path for employers to reduce health insurance costs.

THURSDAY, APRIL 8 | 7:45 AM – 9:00 AM Three Things You Should Know: Innovative Ways to Reduce Healthcare Costs at the Workplace Virtual Event | Registration required

Testimonial Tuesday TUESDAY, APRIL 13 | 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM At Sonny’s BBQ Alafaya Trail | Featuring Betsy Lopez (Aloma Bowl); Yensi Castro (Hilton Garden Inn UCF) & Justin Meyer (Rosenthal Meyer, PLLC) | LIVE of Facebook

President Trump signed the executive order making it easier for insurance to be sold across state lines and opening the door for Chambers to develop plans to benefit members. The East Orlando Chamber (EOCC) began building the foundation to offer health benefits for members. Health benefits supplemental program offered options to support traditional insurance products. For those unable to go the traditional route, we added MDLive offering telehealth covering the entire family, with no deductible, no co-pay, all for one affordable price. Pre-pandemic, many physician offices were resistant to move into what was considered impersonal patient care online. However, during COVID-19 pandemic, Healio reported telehealth accounted for 30 percent of total outpatient visits. It was quite a transition as many clinicians as they adopted the practice to limit exposure for patients and staff. Flipping from in-person to remote care made it easier, saved time, costs saving for the patient and provided more healthcare access to rural populations. Offering insurance can also be difficult for a small business due to a limited number of staff and/or the cost to the bottom line. As we enter the next phase of “normalcy” the EOCC has ramped up its efforts to help our small business members offering a NEW traditional health insurance program thanks to our collaboration with Trustee Member Avalon Insurance Services, Inc. “The East Orlando Chamber is always striving to add more value to members”, said Andrew Cole, President & CEO. “In these unprecedented times, we know the value employee benefits play to our organization and members. Three years ago, we introduced our supplemental plans and with the help of Joe Filice, President of Avalon Insurance Services, we continued to adjust the program to meet the needs of members during the current environment.” Hiring and keeping talented employees becomes more difficult requiring strategy leveraging benefits as a recruitment and retention tool. Of the 738 HR professionals surveyed 95 percent said health care benefits were most important to most employees. According to SHRM (Society for Human Resource Management), employee benefits play a role in retention. “Offering a competitive benefits package, in addition to competitive pay, reduces the likelihood an employee will find the grass greener elsewhere.” The beauty of the plan now being offered by the EOCC is that it is full-blown employee benefits offered to any employee of one of our member companies. Enrollment is 100 percent voluntary and requires no financial, service, or administrative responsibilities or

The Hybrid Member Academy: Roadmap to Member Success WEDNESDAY, APRIL 14 | 8:30 AM – 10:30 AM Hybrid Event - East Orlando Chamber office 12301 Lake Underhill Road, Ste. 245, Orlando, FL 32828

Coffee Club Nona THURSDAY, APRIL 15 | 8:30 – 9:30 AM (3rd Thursday of the month) “What Would You Do? Tricky Customer Svc. Scenarios” Sam’s Club Lake Nona 11920 Narcoossee Road, Orlando, FL 32832 FREE to EOCC Members | $10 for Non-Members

Virtual Office Hours MOST THURSDAYS | 4:00 – 5:00 PM

EOCC Spark 365 Brain Trust After Hours THURSDAY, APRIL 20 | 4:00 – 5:30 PM East Orlando Chamber office 12301 Lake Underhill Road, Ste. 245, Orlando, FL 32828 Member Exclusive with Limited space

Chamber Luncheon: Development in Central FL: Impact to Business & the Economy Panel APRIL 21 | 11:30 AM – 1:00 PM Featuring Don Whyte (Deseret Cattle & Citrus); Chuck Fowke (Homes by John C. Fowke); Cliff Long (ORRA); Chassity Vega (GOBA); & Chuck Whittall (Unicorp National Development) Renaissance Orlando Airport Hotel 5445 Forbes Place, Orlando, FL 32812

EOCC Spark 365 Brain Trust THURSDAY APRIL 22 | 8:00 – 9:30 AM East Orlando Chamber office 12301 Lake Underhill Road, Ste. 245, Orlando, FL 32828 Member Exclusive with Limited space

Dance the Night Away After Hours at Arthur Murray’s THURSDAY APRIL 22 | 5:30 – 7:00 PM Arthur Murray Dance Studio of Waterford Lakes 2504 S. Alafaya Trail, #110, Orlando, FL 32828 $10 per person for Dance Lesson, wine, beer & light snacks

EOCC Non-Profit Roundtable – Hybrid Event THURSDAY, APRIL 28 | 9:00 – 10:00 AM “Supporting Your Non-Profit Board” Member Exclusive East Orlando Chamber office 12301 Lake Underhill Road, Ste. 245, Orlando, FL 32828

W.I.S.E. (Women in Successful Endeavors Businesswomen Networking Lunch MAY 5 | 11:30 AM – 1:00 PM “Women in Government” Featuring Moderator Dana Loncar, Consensus Communication The Celeste Hotel, 4105 N Alafaya Trail, Orlando, FL 32826

Healthcare Council Collaborative Virtual Panel Discussing & Networking THURSDAY, MAY 13 | 7:45 AM – 9:00 AM Three Things You Should Know: Physician Practice & Value Based Care – Is it the Key to Success Moving Forward?

Please visit for a complete listing of April events





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liability to the member company. Employers can also offer these on a more traditional platform through payroll deduction and can also choose to contribute a portion or all the premiums. Plans are customizable to meet the culture, demographics, and specific needs of the company. Better yet, everyone can take advantage of this outstanding option: Full time, part time, 1099 & contract employees. The current plan will allow Chamber Members and their employees to take advantage of these great options:

EOCC Health Benefits being offered: Medical, Dental, Vision, Life, Accident, Critical Illness, Cancer, Hospital and Telehealth.

Customizable Employee Benefit Package Offerings: EOCC is offering employee benefits plans like what a traditional employer would offer and gives the member the opportunity to purchase what coverages offered best meet their unique personal and family needs.

Ease of enrollment: members can utilize a benefit administration system through an assigned website where all information regarding the benefits offered, plan designs and rates will be housed. On this benefit administration system, the member can research all benefits offered and enroll. Educational Resource: The benefit administration system combined with the call center and the Services from Avalon Insurance Services and the Meehan Agency will be a resource for employee benefits surpassed by no other chamber in our area. Members will now have the ability and resource to learn more about employee benefits and how they best meet their unique needs.

Industry Leading Service: members will have CONTINUED P.8

East Orlando Chamber Boosting an Already Impressive Member Benefit Package


Healthcare Options for Small Business: EOCC has a Plan to Consider

In fall 2018, the East Orlando Chamber of Commerce (EOCC) raised the bar on its membership benefits program by offering group health benefits to its members and to the employees of its members for the first time in the 72-year history of the organization.

all benefit offering information available on the online benefit administration system and will also have a call center designed specifically for their plans. Members will have the options to go online or talk directly with a service representative assigned specifically for their group. In 2021, it is not surprising that health benefits are the bedrock of compensation strategy especially following the COVID-19 pandemic. Clutch reported that “health benefits have never been more critical than during the midst of a pandemic. This pandemic brought fears and anxiety that changed the way people work, eat, buy and live.” Offering health benefits help employees feel more secure personally and financially, making the EOCC’s option one members should take advantage. The East Orlando Chamber is here to help with unique offerings to help elevate your businesses visibility and connect you with others helping your business thrive. Our upcoming Healthcare Collaborative, April 8th will explore “Innovative Ways to Reduce Healthcare Costs at the Workplace” featuring Kevin Joyce, Executive Director of Orlando Orthopaedic Center and Joe Filice, President of Avalon Insurance Services. Are you hungry for more? Join us for our April 21st Chamber Luncheon discussing Development in Central Florida and its Impact to Business & the Economy. Don Whyte (Deseret Cattle & Citrus) will moderate the panel discussion with panelists Chuck Fowke, President (Homes by John C. Fowke); Cliff Long, CEO (ORRA); Chassity Vega, President (GOBA) and Chuck Whittall, President (Unicorp National Development). May 5th the EOCC will host our W.I.S.E. (Women in Successful Endeavors) Luncheon on “Women in Politics” at The Celeste Hotel sponsored by UCF. Dana Loncar (Consensus Communication) will moderate our distinguished panel including: Commissioner Mayra Uribe (Orange County District 3); Roseann Harrington, Chief of Staff (Orange County Mayor Jerry L. Demings) and Teresa Jacobs, Chair (Orange County School Board & Former Orange County Mayor). For more information or to register call (407) 2775951 or visit our website at The East Orlando Chamber of Commerce everywhere East of I-4.

The choices included many of the components found in a health insurance program but without comprehensive medical insurance in an effort to keep costs low. Now, thanks to a third revamp of the package, EOCC is excited to offer a full traditional medical insurance component to its already impressive choice of employee benefits. “When COVID hit, people were no longer looking for the cheapest option in the market. They wanted something comprehensive in case they had to go to the hospital. So, all of last year, we worked on putting a plan together that would let us offer medical insurance along with our package of benefits and supplements,” said Andrew Cole, President and CEO of EOCC. The Chamber has made available a choice of medical coverage from either United Healthcare as well as a short-term policy from National General with access to the Aetna Plan. “You can choose whichever medical insurance plan based on access to different doctors or benefits, depending on what works for you,” said Cole. Through their on-going relationship with Avalon Insurance Services, the East Orlando Chamber will also offer dental, vision, MD Live and supplemental policies for any size business for full time, part time, 1099 and contract employees. “Members do not have to take the entire package of offerings, you can a la carte it is as much as you want,” Cole said. The ability to pick and choose specifically which elements you want, gives employers, especially the small ones, a strong recruiting and retention tool for their staff. “We're trying to give employers an option,” Cole

Dorothy Hardee is the administrator of the East Orlando Chamber of Commerce.

TBI Traumatic Brain Injury TBI

Yes, Yes, we treat we treat that. that.

said. “You know, right now a lot of people have lost jobs, businesses have struggled and you're trying to attract top talent. There's a lot of top talent that's out there, and if you’re going to attract them, especially if you're a smaller business, you need to have something that's able to bring that talent in. A lot of people are looking for insurance on top of the salary offered. This is put into place to help a business that may not have the means. It's still all voluntary of what we have, but they can offer this plan to their employees and to be that employer of choice.” The package platforms are designed to address the two most common benefits plan types:

• Payroll deduction benefits plans utilizing IRS section 125 (cafeteria plans), • Non-payroll deduction benefits plans utilizing direct billing to the employee. “If an employer takes any of these that he can payroll deduct, they're saving money, so that's another perk,” said Cole. Joe Filice, president of Avalon Insurance Services developed this resource of value to fellow members offering the traditional employee benefits package while also offering an educational resource to each. “Any employee of our member companies can offer this coverage to their employees on a 100 percent voluntary basis while the company has no financial, service or administrative responsibilities or liabilities,” said Filice. “Employers can also contribute a portion or all of the premium. They can also customize the employer benefit package designed specifically for their unique culture, demographics and needs.” Filice said they wanted to create options for segments of the population that have typically been overlooked for various reasons. “It's something that we're extremely proud to offer as a benefit to our members and to help our small businesses that don't otherwise have the opportunity to offer something to their employees,” added Cole. For more information about the Chamber and membership call (407) 2775951 or visit

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The Truth About US Healthcare with 28 percent college graduates, and 27 percent with advanced degrees. “We can take a number of paths to increase our listener base,” said Chaet. “I like the podcast angle, but we’re open to other channels such as syndication to see that our messaging is available to more consumers.” Jones is thrilled with the show’s immediate impact and positive trajectory. “People are hungry for healthcare information,” said Jones. “In America, we’ve practiced sick care. But in the future, we need to be practicing preventative and wellness care. How do you transition from one to the other? That’s what we’re trying to help people understand.”

What is Your Most Valuable Asset and How Do You Protect It? BY NICK TRAWINSKI

So, what is your most valuable asset, really? Your retirement account? Your Home?

For more information on Healthcare Now, contact John Kelly at (407) 701-7424 or Tune in 7-8 am every Saturday on 950 AM/ 94.9 FM-The Answer.

You are…along with your continued ability to earn an income. Without your income nothing else is possible. According to Medscape the average US physician makes about $290,000 per year. This means that the average physician has a career earning potential of just over $10 million dollars. According to Life Happens. org, 1 in 4 people will suffer a long-term disability prior to their age of 65.   If a physician suffers a disability at the age of 45, they have the potential to lose nearly $7 million dollars of future income. You already spend thousands of dollars a year insuring your expenses like your home with homeowners insurance and your car with car insurance, but how much disability insurance do you have? And more specifically, how much Own Specialty Disability Insurance do you have?


‘Rising Star’ Shines United States. My chair is a Black woman who leads the No. 8 materials science department in the country. And my dean is one of only about 70 female engineering deans or directors in the country.

You recently participated in UF’s Black Voices in Research storytelling event. Why did you take part? Through vulnerability we can change perspective on our own prejudices. We are all prejudiced, we all carry bias, but taking time to say, “This is my experience,” and then having other people respond with, “Oh, wait! That resonates with me,” allows us to see each other from a different context. It allows us to connect and build a network. Through these connections, we’re able to become better researchers and better scientists, and that’s the true mission.

What is Own Specialty Disability Insurance? Own Specialty Disability Insurance is a type of Long-Term disability policy that was designed with physicians in mind. It provides you with a tax-free income replacement if a sickness or injury prevents you from working in your medical specialty. It also continues to pay your full tax-free benefit even if you elect to continue to work in another occupation.

What did you want to be when you grew up? When I was 10, I was obsessed with biology. I watched a PBS series on mold … so I decided I was going to grow some with a plastic container, some bread and water. I wiped my fingers in dust, put the dust on the bread, sealed the container and hid it in my mom’s dresser. I remember my mom finding the mold a week later — I was successful! From there, my love of biology grew.

Do you have Own Specialty Disability Insurance? Own Specialty disability insurance for physicians can

What do you like to do when you’re not researching? Other passion projects, such as working out and being physically active, are an absolute requirement for me. My favorite is Zumba or dance fitness. I also enjoy reading and learning about personal finance. With COVID-19 limitations, I’ve also enjoyed calls with friends and setting up different communities virtually.

What was your reaction when you found out you were on the Forbes list? I found out that morning when everything was already released. I’m the kind of person happier doing my work, planning and interacting with my students, or training them to do things and seeing their excitement. So, when I found out, I was kind of like, “OK.” I let my family know and then I tweeted about it because I thought it was worth celebrating, but literally within the next 30 minutes I went back to my writing group and kept writing the rest of the day because I was trying to complete additional proposals.

So, no celebration at all? Yeah, well, I think I bought myself my favorite meal: chicken tenders and fries. I know it’s not the healthiest, but it’s really good every now and then.





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only be purchased through one of 7 disability carriers: Ameritas, Guardian, MassMutual, Mutual of Omaha, Ohio National, Principal or The Standard.   If you have Long-Term Disability Insurance through your employer (group coverage), The American Medical Association (AMA), or Northwestern Mutual then your income is at risk in the event you suffer a disability because you may not have true Own Specialty Disability coverage.

How Much Does It Cost to Protect My most valuable asset with True Own Specialty Disability Insurance? If you rely on your income to afford your lifestyle then you cannot afford to go without Own Specialty Disability Insurance.   The cost to purchase a policy varies on the coverage you need, your sex, age, medical specialty, medical history, and the state in which you reside.  The average U.S. doctor pays $500 dollars a month for coverage.   When purchasing your coverage be sure to inquire about any available hospital or professional association affiliation discounts which might be available to help you save on your premiums.   Nick Trawinski is the Principal Agent at InsuranceMD, an independent insurance agency working exclusively with physicians advocating that every physician has True Own Specialty Disability coverage. We provide physicians with quote comparisons from all 7 carriers, and we shop for any available discounts to ensure each physician is getting the best coverage at the best price. We care about your disability insurance; you can request quotes here and schedule a call with one of our experienced agents to help you determine how much Own-Specialty coverage you qualify for at the best rate available. Visit

Encouraging Optimism in Your Patients for Better Outcomes Power of positive thinking. Looking on the bright side. Find the silver lining. BY APRIL BOYKIN

difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty." Optimism is hopefulness and confidence that the world is a good place and that things will turn out ok. It is not wishful or fantasy thinking, but rather a way of looking at what life gives you and believing you have some responsibility for its outcomes. Optimists know that you can in fact impact the outcome of life events. The idea that “it isn’t what happens to you but how you respond to what happens to you” is the ultimate Optimist mantra, and research backs this up. According to the Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM), the National Center for PTSD at VA Boston Healthcare System, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, and the University of Miami Healthy System (and many others) the benefits of being an optimist include the following: • Protects against mortality risk.

Many of us have heard these quotes as platitudes when we’ve been faced with real challenges in our lives. Today we know they are more than that, today we know that Optimistic people live longer and have a better quality of life! They are happier, healthier, and deal with health and environmental challenges better, improving their overall health outcomes. Researchers have long identified risk factors for disease states and death but have only just begun to explore the emotional and psychological protective factors in aging. According to a 2018 Boston University School of Medicine study, women and men who are optimistic have an 11-15 percent longer lifespan and have 50-70 percent greater odds of reaching 85 years old. These people are believed to be more resilient and better able to regulate stressors, and to bounce back better from adversity. They also tend to be healthier, engage more consistently with self-care such as exercise and ultimately believe they can affect their own well-being. Winston Churchill once said, "A pessimist sees the

• Promotes resilient aging, it’s the best anti-aging drug out there. • Promotes a longer life span with a 30 percent chance of living to 85 years and older. • Improves one’s ability to beat cancer, specifically with many studies in the area of breast cancer. • Creates overall better health. • Creates more enjoyment of love in life, with more and varied loving friendships and family





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relationships. • Improves career and family stress management. • Promotes the experiences of less stress overall in all aspects of life. It is important to know that most people are pessimistic to some degree. In fact, our brains are wired to look out for things that may put us in danger, creating a pattern of pessimistic perceptions that have kept us safe for thousands of years. However, being too good at pessimism can negatively impact your wellbeing because it causes you to only see the negative options in your life. The good news is that only about 25 percent of our wiring accounts for our attitudes of optimism or pessimism, and the rest is made up of our environment, social support and learned behaviors. Martin Seligman, a psychologist at the University of Pennsylvania, believes optimism like many other skills can be learned. Dr. Seligman found that people who learned optimism techniques were far less likely to develop depression, anxiety and also enjoyed improved overall health. As healthcare professionals, you can greatly impact your patients’ health and wellness by integrating language and techniques in their care that facilitate the development of optimism with your patients.

... being too good at pessimism can negatively impact your wellbeing because it causes you to only see the negative options in your life.

your thoughts to something positive. Practice this and eventually you will control your thoughts. • Replacement Thoughts - Find a happy memory, keep a happiness list or a list of gratitude’s, or plan a vacation, find something that you can commit to thinking about when you are feeling anxious or down. One or two minutes of thinking about this will shift your mood.

• Decide to be Optimistic - In every situation remind yourself that you can decide how you will act and react. And with that knowledge you can choose happiness.

• Happiness List/Gratitude List - Many people wait until they have lost weight, or have the perfect job, or perfect spouse, or whatever they are want, to be happy. Because of this, they miss out on all the things that make life worth living. Make a list of all the little things that are good in your life. The automatic toothbrush that feels like a trip to the dentist, or flying a kite, or brisket with carnalized onions, or anything that brings joy. Keep the list handy and read it when you are feeling out of sort. You can also write gratitude’s on this list.

• Thought Stopping Techniques - When you feel the anxiety in the pit of your stomach or hear the negative thoughts ruminating in your head, learn to stop your thoughts in that instant. Sing out loud, hum or whistle. This helps break the state of ruminations or anxiety so you can redirect

• Avoid Negativity - Limit yourself from being around people or things that bring you down. The complainers, those that are always sick, who only see what is wrong, or who put others down will only make you feel worse and will make it hard to be optimistic.

You CAN build Optimism:





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• Change the subject - When someone is stuck on the negative offer up something positive to talk about, redirect the conversation, or be honest and ask people to participate with you in changing your attitude. For example, say “Today let’s try this, we each have 5 minutes to talk about our ailments and then we are going to focus on the good things and see how we feel.” • Give compliments - Saying something positive to another raises their vibration, it makes them feel good, and in return will make you feel good. This can be a “thank you” or an appreciation of a person, place or thing, but stating what it is will always help. Help your patients do better by encouraging optimism. If you are concerned about being pessimistic yourself, want to learn skills to be more optimistic, or want to learn techniques to help others, reach out to a counselor to help support and guide you today. April Boykin is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and cofounder of Counseling Resource Services (CRS). Established in 2013, CRS is a communitybased in-home integrated behavioral health agency serving the aged and disabled population in Central Florida. As a mental health counselor, she has provided individual, family and caregiver counseling to children, teens and adults. She can be reached at

Adult-use Legalization Laws not Associated with Adverse Impacts on Public Health not find any correlation between an increase or decrease in traffic fatalities among states that have legalized cannabis.


When it comes to cannabis legalization, a common strategy by prohibitionists is to use “doom and gloom” or “fear of the unknown” to convince constituents or voters that legal cannabis will make our society much worse, and the “sky will fall” and “the world will end” if cannabis is made legal (for adult use).

• Economic/ Budget impacts- The largest impact that was identified from the study was economic impact via state tax revenues. The initial tax revenue projections have been dramatically exceeded by actual revenues. Colorado now collects $20 million per month from adult use cannabis. Washington State collected $70 million in sales tax revenue in the first year of sales (double the projected tax revenue). Oregon had projected $2-$3million per month in sales tax for cannabis, but are actually recording $10 million per month. California is now collecting $50 million per month in cannabis tax revenue.

However, a recent comprehensive analysis report by the CATO Institute studied the effect of state marijuana adult use legalization across the United States. The report concluded that the enactment of statewide laws regulating the adult use, production, and retail sale of cannabis is not associated with significant adverse impacts on public health. A link to the report is below:

Analysis Cannabis legalization has not led to society’s downfall, as many prohibitionists have predicted. Also, we now see with this report we that legal cannabis is very good for generating tax revenue. As more data becomes available, you will start to see other areas of society and the economy that will be positively affected from the legalization of cannabis for adult use. The biggest area globally that will be impacted with cannabis being made legal for adult use in America and other countries is health care costs. As cannabis becomes more mainstream, more people will start

The Effect of State Marijuana Legalizations: 2021 Update | Cato Institute The report went through data prior to adult use cannabis legalization in states, and after legalization to assess claims that public health would decrease and society would be worse off than keeping cannabis illegal. The data has created the following objective facts: • Since the 1970s, which started the first wave of marijuana decriminalization by states, marijuana use by state residents did not change in response to relaxed restrictions. • Increase in use of cannabis in states who have recently legalized recreational/adult use cannabis started years before full recreational legalizationTherefore, cannabis use was increasing prior to legalization and has not demonstrated a significant increase in usage since full legalization.

using cannabis as a “wellness” product, and not so much to get “high” or stoned. You will begin to see nutritional supplement products with cannabinoids in them (low dose THC, CBD, CBG, CBN, etc.) being used by millions of people for some medical reason – sleep, anxiety, depression, pain, etc. This increase in use of legal cannabis products for adults and medical cannabis (by prescription), will make our population more healthy and less susceptible to chronic health problems of tobacco smoking, alcohol, and diabetes. We are already starting to see a decrease in number of monthly prescriptions for patients who start using cannabis by 2-3 prescriptions per month. Imagine a country like Germany that has socialized medicine paid for by the government. If the German population can decrease their prescriptions per month by 2-3 prescription drugs by starting to use cannabis, the entire German population will be healthier and save the Government billions in prescription drug costs. Cannabis will continue to be legalized across the USA and the world. If you are trying to help your state or country legalize, use this report and data to assist in your efforts. Michael C. Patterson, founder and CEO of U.S. Cannabis Pharmaceutical Research & Development of Melbourne, is a consultant for the development of the medical marijuana industry nationwide and in Florida. He serves as a consultant to Gerson Lehrman Group, New York and helps educate GLG partners on specific investment strategies and public policy regarding Medical Marijuana in the U.S. and Internationally. He can be reached at


Insider Tips And Secrets To Get The MOST Out Of Your Computer

The Practice Manager’s Guide To IT Support Services And Fees

Insider Tips And Secrets To GetYou The MOST Out Of Your Computer What Should Expect To Pay

For Support Your SmallAnd Business The Practice Manager’sIT Guide To IT For Support Services Fees

• Marijuana use rates in children- Many prohibitionists have fought legalization spouting fear tactics of many children getting “hooked” on cannabis if made legal. However, the data shows that in the six states that have post-legalization data, Maine, Massachusetts, Alaska, and Colorado- adolescent use of cannabis decreased in the years leading up to legalization. Then, after legalization, usage rates returned to typical usage rates prior to legalization but have not continued to increased past previous usage rates.

(And How To Get Exactly What You Need Without Unnecessary Extras, Hidden Fees And Bloated Contracts)

What You Should Expect To Pay For IT Support For Your Small Business Read This Guide And You’ll Discover:

The 3 most common ways IT services companies charge for their services, and the pros and cons of each approach.

(And How To Get Exactly What You Need Without Unnecessary Extras, Hidden Fees And Contracts) A common billing model that putsBloated ALL THE RISK on

• Alcohol usage when cannabis is legalized - The report found that alcohol usage went up a few percentage points in some states (Washington State - 1 percent, California - 1.9 percent, Massachusetts - 2.3 percent) after cannabis legalization. However, the same report found Colorado, Maine, and Alaska, and Nevada decreased alcohol consumption approximately 1 percent when cannabis was made legal.

you, the customer, when buying IT services;

Read This Guide And You’ll Discover:you’ll learn what it is and why you need to avoid agreeing to it.

The 3 most common ways IT services companies charge for their services, and the pros and cons of each approach. Exclusions, hidden fees and other

“gotcha” IT companies put in A common billing model that puts ALL THE RISKclauses on you, the their contracts that you DON’T want customer, when buying IT services; you’ll learn what to agree to. it is and why you need to avoid agreeing to it.

• Suicides and Mental Health- after studying all the data in legal states (before and after legalization of cannabis), the researchers could find no statistical difference in the number of suicides in legal states before or after cannabis legalization.

Exclusions, hidden fees and other “gotcha” How clauses IT companies to make sure you know what to. you’re getting to avoid put in their contracts that you DON’T wantexactly to agree

disappointment, frustration and added

latergetting on that you How to make sure you know exactly whatcosts you’re to didn’t avoidanticipate. disappointment, frustration and added costs later on that you didn’t anticipate. 21 revealing questions to ask your IT

• Crime- Cannabis related offenses have plummeted due to cannabis being legal in certain states (which is to be expected). However, when reviewing data on violent crime in these states, violent crime has neither soared nor plummeted in the wake of marijuana legalization.

support firm BEFORE giving them access

21 revealing questions to ask your IT support firm BEFORE to your computer network, e-mail and data. giving them access to your computer network, e-mail and data. Free Copy Of This Practice Guide Today Download Your Free CopyDownload Of ThisYour Practice Manager’s GuideManager’s Today Online At:Online At:

• Road Safety- Overall, the data extrapolated could





APRIL 2021

New Lung Cancer Screening Guidelines Doubles the Number of Potential Lives Saved BY JANELLE HOM, TAREK MEKHAIL, MD

Thousands more people are now eligible to receive life-saving lung cancer screening. This is thanks to the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recently updating its lung cancer screening recommendation. Previously, the guidelines for screening were people 55 to 80, have a 30-pack smoking history, and currently smoke or have quit within the past 15 years. This update expands the current guidelines for screening to include individuals ages 50 to 80 years, who have a 20 pack-year smoking history and currently smoke or have quit within the past 15 years. While the change might appear insignificant, the recommendation will nearly double the number of individuals eligible for screening and has the potential to save significantly more lives than the current guidelines. Lung cancer screening is critical to saving lives. Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer deaths here in Florida and across America, and lung cancer screening offers hope. "Typically, lung cancer isn’t caught early because it doesn’t present symptoms until the later stages of the disease. Lung cancer screening is the only tool we have

to detect lung cancer early, when it is more likely to be curable," says Tarek Mekhail, MD, Medical Director of the Thoracic Cancer Program at AdventHealth Cancer Institute. If lung cancer is caught before it spreads, the likelihood of surviving five years or more improves to 59 percent. Unfortunately, not enough people who are eligible are getting the lung cancer screening. According to the Lung Association’s 2020 “State of Lung Cancer” report, only 3.2 percent of people eligible in Florida have gotten the screening. This is significantly lower than the national average of 5.7 percent. The updated USPSTF recommendation is also an important step forward in addressing racial disparities associated with lung cancer. The Lung Association’s “State of Lung Cancer” report 2020 also showed that people of color who are diagnosed with lung cancer face worse outcomes compared to white Americans because they are less likely to be diagnosed early, less likely to receive surgical treatment, and more likely to not receive any treatment. The expanded criteria will more than double the number of Black and Hispanic people eligible for screening and increase the number of American Indians and Alaskan Natives eligible by 2.7-fold. Close to twice as many women will also be





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eligible for screening under the revised guidelines. As a result of the Affordable Care Act, most private insurance plans will need to update screening coverage policies to reflect the updated guidelines by March 31, 2022. This means that those who are newly eligible for lung cancer screening may not be covered by their insurance. We encourage people to talk to their doctor about to discuss if a lung cancer screening is right for them. Defeating lung cancer is a top priority for the American Lung Association, and the expansion of the screening guidelines is a critical step to improve survival rates and reach more of those Americans potentially at high risk for this disease. We urge Medicare and state Medicaid programs to move swiftly and update coverage guidelines to match this expanded recommendation. According to Mekhail, "If lung cancer is caught before it spreads, the likelihood of surviving five years or more improves to 59 percent. The new changes in the screening guidelines will be immensely effective in helping us diagnose more cases of lung cancer early on."  Learn more about lung cancer screening and lung health at or Janelle Hom, is Executive Director, American Lung Association in Florida. Tarek Mekhail, MD, is Medical Director, Thoracic Cancer Program at AdventHealth.

Want Better Medication Adherence? Make Accessibility and Service a Priority BY MARK METROVICH

For physicians, ensuring that patients are taking their medication is a vital step to better and healthier outcomes. 2. Free Delivery

Ensuring that patients follow the correct dosages on prescriptions and take them at the right time reduces complications and possibly further treatments for worse issues. But sometimes treatment plans have complications, and there could be moments and/or reasons when med adherence is hard to achieve. The reasons could be innocent and understandable. Perhaps a patient missed a date to fill their prescription. Or maybe fear of COVID-19 keeps them from going out to the pharmacy. A lack of medication adherence can prolong an illness; but while making sure patients take their meds on time is important, that can only happen if patients receive their meds on time. C. Everett Koop, MD, once said, “Drugs don’t work in patients who don’t take them.” That is where streamlining and increasing patient access to medication comes in. With my work, I see just how ensuring easier patient access makes a positive difference in medication adherence. With the right set-up, you can ensure that patients can receive their prescriptions right at the doctor’s office, or that they can receive them handdelivered to their doorstep. By making it as easy as possible for them to get what they need, they now have a greater opportunity to follow the doctor’s prescribed regime, increasing the likelihood of healthier outcomes. With that in mind, here are the two ways a pharmacy can make medications more accessible to patients:

One of the reasons why people quit taking their medication is because their prescriptions are not available to them. If patients are required to drive the pharmacy each and every time they need to refill a prescription, it’s a higher likelihood that they will miss out on a refill. Maybe the patient is too busy to make a second trip, or perhaps they have a chronic medical condition that makes traveling difficult. Either of these reasons are understandable, but both lead to the same unfortunate result: now the patient is not taking their medication. That is why medication delivery is so important. If we give the patient an easier way (either on the phone or online) to schedule prescription delivery right to their doorstep, we ensure that their meds end up in their hands, exactly as the doctor planned. Combined with technology that can put a patient’s medicine cabinet virtually in their hands, pharmacists

now have a way to ensure that prescription refills and medication adherence are easier than ever. These benefits have already saved people time and money for years, but during this pandemic, when avoiding contact is more important, the delivery service now plays a valuable role in keeping patients home and healthy. All physicians should love the sound of that. Mark Metrovich is the Vice President of Business Development at MedAvail Technologies, Inc, a pharmacy company that partners with providers and patients to streamline shipping of medications. You can find out information about Mark’s company by visiting If you are interested in reaching out to Mark regarding this article or any other relevant healthcare topics, please contact him at



1. Partner with Physicians Getting a prescription filled is a two-step process, when it actually does not need to be. With most pharmacies, patients first make the trek to the doctor to receive their prescription, then need to make another trip to a pharmacy to fill the prescription. If we are asking patients to spend their valuable time out at the doctor’s office, why not give them their prescription before they leave? In my experience, I have seen the difference in what happens when a physician’s office partners with pharmacies. By the pharmacy putting their kiosk in the clinic, it provides a next step for their care that does not require another trip. A true win-win for them and for the physician. Gone are the days of waiting in line at the retail pharmacy or putting off med refills because they could not get in the car today. Instead, the patient walks up to the kiosk, gets put on the phone with a pharmacist, and inserts their prescription. The pharmacy rep then goes over the treatment, and within a few minutes, the medications are dispensed. By receiving their prescription and directions about it right then and there, patients are also less likely to forget when to take the dosage, how often, etc. Simply put, partnering with physicians is the first way to achieve next-level medication adherence.

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APRIL 2021


tion. She earned her M.D. with a concentration in pediatrics at Saratov State Medical University in the Russian Federation, having started medical school at Azerbaijan State Medical University in Azerbaijan.

Orlando Health Orlando Regional Medical Center Announces New Vice President of Operations (L to R): Jocelyn Pichardo, MD, Chief Medical Officer, Community Health Centers; Stephanie Lopez, Community Benefit Specialist, Orlando Health; and Debra Andree, MD, President & Chief Executive Officer, Community Health Centers.

Community Health Centers, Inc. Receives $50,000 Grant for Behavioral Health from Orlando Health Foundation health services for children and adults at their Winter Garden, Forest City, Pine Hills, Leesburg, Four Corners, and Groveland centers. To schedule an appointment for behavioral health or other Community Health Center services, call 407-905-8827 or visit for more information.

Orlando Health Foundation donated $50,000 to Community Health Centers, Inc. to expand behavioral and mental health services in the Pine Hills area. This grant will allow Community Health Centers to hire a full-time Licensed Clinical Social Worker at their Pine Hills center. Serving 70,000 patients in the Central Florida area, Community Health Centers offers behavioral

HEBNI works with physicians to identify patients who are at risk for food insecurity, which could lead to greater health problems. These patients are referred to the Veggie Rx program where they receive a prescription (voucher) to purchase fresh produce at the Fresh Stop Mobile Farmer’s Market in East Orlando. Prepackaged bundles of up to 8-10 pounds of fresh produce are available for distribution at this location, which is enough to feed an individual adult for three or four days or at least two healthy meals for a family of four. The mobile market is available in additional neighborhoods throughout the Central Florida region. Providence is grateful for the grant and encouraged by its potential to help in the community. Since 2005, the Collaborative Community Council, formerly known as Community Health Impact Council, has invested more than $15 million in 60 programs across the tri-county area and impacted more than 151,000 people. For more information, visit https://www.adventhealth. com/community-benefit/central-florida/collaborativecommunity-council-0?destination=/group/78/content

Laurie Seely Joins Orlando Medical News as Advertising Manager We are proud to announce that Laurie Seely has joined Orlando Medical News as advertising manager. “I’m so excited to join the team here at Orlando Medical News and Healthcare Now!” said Seely. Seely is also currently working as a Health Insurance Broker, consulting with individuals and business owners regarding their health insurance needs, so she looks forward to this new endeavor as a great complement to her existing business. Since moving to Orlando, she has developed a new appreciation for the warmth found here. “In a previous life, I used to live in Illinois, singing in the chorus at the Lyric Opera of Chicago. I sure do miss the music and the costumes, but I don’t miss the weather at all,” she said. As part of her service to advertisers on the Healthcare Now! radio program, she is also available to do commercial voiceovers.

Nemours Welcomes Pediatric Internist to Direct New Pediatric Intensive Care Unit at Lakeland Regional Health

AdventHealth Offering $1.2M in Grants to Local Nonprofits for Innovative Health Solutions

Nemours Children’s Health System welcomes, MD, FAAP, a boardcertified, pediatric intensivist and pediatric hospitalist, who will serve as director of the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) for Nemours at Lakeland Regional Health. The PICU at Lakeland Regional Health is a 12-bed High-Acuity Pediatric Intensive Care Unit, as designated by the Society of Critical Care Medicine and the World Foundation of Pediatric Intensive and Critical Care Societies, ensures that children and adolescents can receive critical medical care close to home from specially trained physicians. Taking care of young patients and families is something that comes naturally to Dr. Zand, whose mother was a nurse practitioner in her native Saratov City in the Russian Federation. Dr. Zand completed her fellowship in pediatric critical care at Women and Children’s Hospital of Buffalo – State University of New York (SUNY) at Buffalo School of Medicine. She completed a residency in pediatrics at Hurley Medical Center / Michigan State University in Flint, Michigan, and an internship/specialist diploma at Tyumen State Medical Academy in the Russian Federa-

AdventHealth is offering $1.2 million in grants to local nonprofits for projects that are addressing Central Florida’s greatest health challenges, including care coordination, food security, mental and behavioral health, and community development. The AdventHealth Collaborative Community Council, comprised of regional business and civic leaders, will accept applications for the annual Community Impact grant opportunity April 1 through May 31. The funding will be available in January 2022. Community Impact grants often produce outstanding results for recipients. For example, thanks in part to a $285,000 grant from AdventHealth and the dedication of entrepreneurial nutritionists and community leaders in Orlando, Health Empowerment through Behavioral and Nutritional Initiatives (HEBNI) has emerged as an oasis of healthy food in neighborhoods considered “food deserts” with a lack of available healthy food options. HEBNI ( provides food vouchers through its Fresh Stop Veggie Rx program, which is funded by the grant. Created in conjunction with Clinica Mi Salud, the program aims to provide nutritious produce to reduce the incidents of diabetes in some of Orlando’s more ethnically diverse communities.





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Orlando Health Orlando Regional Medical Center (ORMC) recently named Rachna Atwal, M.B.A., as vice president, Operations, for the 808-bed hospital in downtown Orlando. In her new role, Rachna will be responsible for driving operational performance and executing strategic initiatives for the Orlando Health flagship medical center and home to the area’s only Level One Trauma Center. Rachna currently serves as the vice president, Operations, Orlando Health Medical Group. She joined Orlando Health in 2016 as a director for the medical group, with operational responsibility for the adult medicine and surgical service lines. In 2017, she was named chief operating officer for the hospital medicine, adult medicine and surgical service lines. Prior to joining the organization, Rachna served in progressive leadership roles at Wake Forest Baptist Health System, Emory Healthcare, and Children's Healthcare of Atlanta. She earned a master’s degree in business administration from the University of North Carolina, is Six Sigma Green Belt trained and is a certified Project Management Professional. Rachna will begin her new role on May 15.

New President Set to Take Over Orlando Health Cancer Institute Margo Shoup, MD, MBA, FACS will join Orlando Health as the new president of Orlando Health Cancer Institute and vice president of Orlando Health, where she will have oversight of the organization’s oncology services and strategic growth and development efforts. Dr. Shoup comes to Orlando Health Cancer Institute from Nuvance Health in Connecticut, where she served as senior vice president and chair of the Nuvance Health Cancer Institute. Before arriving at Nuvance, she was the medical leader of Oncology for Northwestern Medicine in Chicago, Illinois. A graduate of Northwestern University, Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago, Dr. Shoup completed a general surgery residency and research fellowship at Loyola University in Maywood, Illinois and a surgical oncology fellowship at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York, New York. After finishing her training, Dr. Shoup returned to Loyola University Medical Center, where from 2002 to 2012, she held the titles of Professor of Surgery, Chief of the Division of Surgical Oncology, Vice Chairman for Clinical Outcomes Research in the Department of Surgery and the Assistant Dean for Clinical and Translational Research for the Stritch School of Medicine. Dr. Shoup earned an MBA at University of Massachusetts in Amherst in 2020, and currently has more than 200 peer-reviewed publications and presentations. She has also served as principal investigator on several nationally funded and investigator-initiated research trials. Dr. Shoup served as Director with the American Board of Surgery and continues to be an oral board examiner. She will take the reins of Orlando Health Cancer Institute on June 1, 2021 from Daniel Buchholz, MD.

ORLANDO || GRAND ROUNDS Sonata Senior Living Celebrates the Groundbreaking of Sonata Lake Mary, their Newest Community in Central Florida. Sonata Senior Living and capital partner, Berkshire Residential Investments, has announced the groundbreaking of their newest senior living community, Sonata Lake Mary, a $62 million resort-style campus being built in Lake Mary, Florida FL. Located on a seven-acre site within the 153-acre, $750 million Lake Mary Wellness and Technology Park mixed-use development, the signature property will feature a mix of 193 assisted living, independent living, and memory care apartments. Sonata Lake Mary, the company’s second community scheduled to open post-pandemic, will incorporate the latest purpose-built design, safety, and innovations. Residents will experience enhanced touchless technology, the ability to video conference with loved ones directly from their in-apartment televisions, and enhanced disinfection and air purification systems that have become synonymous with the Sonata Safe philosophy. In addition to these safety enhancements, residents will enjoy spacious apartments from 765 sq. ft. to 1,550 sq. ft., exclusive garage apartments, upscale amenities, and Sonata's trademark exceptional service and care.

"Safety has become our new normal, and hospitality is at the center of all Sonata Senior Living Communities," said Shelley Esden, COO of Sonata Senior Living. "Sonata Lake Mary will purposely combine the two to deliver a modern-day building that puts the needs of our residents first while aligning with the expectations of today’s seniors who desire more choices." Discerning residents will enjoy gourmet dining venues, a full-service bar, theatre, spa, and fitness center. Expansive outdoor Florida-style living spaces and amenities abound, including a resort poolside bar and bistro, bocce ball court, putting greens, dog park, and pet spa, among other amenities such as golf cart charging stations, covered parking, and limited garage apartments. Innovative amenities such as a best-in-its-class, virtual indoor golf simulator will cater to the active senior lifestyle. Sonata Lake Mary, located at the intersection of Caring Drive and Technology Parkway, will place the community within walking distance of Orlando Health’s Reinhart Road campus, which currently includes the existing Emergency Room and Medical Pavilion and recently announced plans to

WeCare tlc, Announces Strategic Partnership with Green Imaging With Covid-19 putting non-emergency testing and procedures on hold, the U.S. is facing a large, pent-up demand for screening. WeCare tlc, the leader in onsite and near-site employee healthcare, has a cost-effective solution to ensure its members can receive the care they deserve at a price they can afford. WeCare tlc has formed a strategic partnership with Green Imaging to provide convenient diagnostic imaging services for its patients with zero out-of-pocket costs to them. Green Imaging is a full-service virtual medical imaging network owned and operated by a group of board-certified radiologists. It provides MRIs, CTs, PETs, ultrasounds, mammograms, nuclear medicine, bone density testing, x-rays and more. Green Imaging has high-quality imaging facilities across the U.S. and is easily accessible to patients. “We’re seeing a dire need to take care of the testing and scanning that was pushed due to Covid-19. Not being able to undergo these often-expensive diagnostic procedures can lead to many health issues down the road,” said Raegan Garber Le Douaron, president of WeCare tlc. “At WeCare tlc, we’re working directly with employers to offer Green Imaging’s services at zero out-of-pocket costs to patients.” Through this partnership, WeCare tlc will be able to offer employers who own the health and wellness centers the option to offer Green Imaging’s service at zero costs to members. The process of using Green Imaging is simple: • Your doctor gives you an order for diagnostic imaging services • Text, call (713-524-9190), chat ( or email ( • Green Imaging to make an appointment – it can often happen the same day • Once you schedule your appointment, Green Imaging will send you a voucher for the service • At your appointment, show your voucher instead of your insurance card • You will pay nothing at the procedure and won’t be responsible for any bills you receive in the mail after • The report from your exam will be sent to your referring doctor. • To learn more about Green Imaging, visit • To learn more about WeCare tlc, visit


expand the campus with a new six-story, 134-bed patient tower. The Lake Mary Wellness and Technology Park is planned to create a sustainable live, work, and medical wellness town center, and senior housing is an essential component of that framework. “We are building a community within a community, and our presence in the park squarely places emphasis on wellness in senior living, which is something we are passionate about," said Esden. "The location in the Lake Wellness and Technology Park will provide our residents convenient access to world-class medical facilities in addition to our signature care." The 250,000 square-foot senior living

community will create approximately 200 jobs during construction and 85 permanent jobs in Lake Mary upon welcoming VIP Founders Club residents in 2022. Lake Mary Mayor, David Mealor, celebrates the groundbreaking. “Sonata Lake Mary will not only bring positive economic impact to the Lake Mary and surrounding areas; it will allow older residents to age in place -- in the city they love and in a community that allows them to live life to the fullest.” Sonata Lake Mary will be the 13th community for Orlando-based Sonata Senior Living and its first joint venture with Berkshire Residential Investments. It is scheduled to open in the Fall of 2022.

Orlando Health Network Saved Medicare and Commercial Insurers $18.3 million, Improved Care for Nearly 275,000 Patients in 2019

AdventHealth Relaunches WholeMe Genomic Study with Screening for Additional Markers

Orlando Health Network’s (OHN) accountable care organization saved the federal government’s Medicare Shared Savings Program (MSSP) and other commercial insurers a total of $18.3 million through efforts to improve quality and reduce health care costs during the 2019 calendar year. Nearly 275,000 patients across Central Florida benefited from the partnerships, which represents a major achievement for the clinically integrated network. “This achievement demonstrates the significant value of coordinated care and innovative partnerships,” said John Cappleman, MD, OHN board chairman. “Because of our results, as our clinical reach and footprint continue to expand, we can confidently say it is to the benefit of our aligned providers, payers and businesses we partner with, and, most importantly, our patients.” The network, which is part of the Orlando Health system, was launched in 2013 as the first hospital-led MSSP Accountable Care Organization (ACO) in the state of Florida. Since the launch, the network has also developed valuebased partnerships with commercial payers including Aetna, Cigna, Florida Blue, and United Healthcare. Through the ACO and other value-based payer arrangements, physicians and healthcare providers work closely with the hospital to improve care and reduce cost for patients, resulting in more than $132 million in patient savings since inception. In 2020, OHN surpassed the 275,000 mark for total covered lives using its network of more than 5,000 primary care and specialty care providers. The network now covers roughly one in eight Greater Orlando residents through its various value-based arrangements with its payer partners. “Our clinically integrated network has advanced our health system’s mission in delivering the best care to our patients and their families across the Central Florida marketplace. The great quality results we are realizing at our health system are directly tied to the care transformation efforts of our provider network. Together, our health system and our provider network have served to make Orlando Health a leading system,” said Dr. George Ralls, chief medical officer and senior vice president, at Orlando Health. For more information about Orlando Health Network and value-based contract performance, the Orlando Health Network 2020 Value Report can be accessed online at

AdventHealth is seeking participants for a groundbreaking genomic study offering a better understanding of genetic conditions that can potentially lead to hereditary diseases. Known as WholeMe, the study launched in 2019 with a focus on a genetic condition called familial hypercholesterolemia (FH), a genetic condition that causes high cholesterol. If left untreated, it can lead to a heart attack, even in young adults. After a pause in recruitment due to the COVID-19 pandemic, WholeMe has resumed, with expanded screening for a wider range of genetic markers. This new phase will include screening for other heart conditions and hereditary cancers such as breast/ovarian cancer (BRCA) and colon cancer (Lynch syndrome). Equipped with this information, physicians can personalize patients’ health care and help prevent, diagnose and treat serious health risks. “We see personalized medicine as the future of health care,” said Rebecca Essner, a data scientist and geneticist at the AdventHealth Research Institute. “Unlocking this genomic information empowers participants to lead a healthier lifestyle, and it helps physicians better treat their patients.” As in the first phase of the study, participants will continue to receive information about their ancestry and a variety of traits, such as such as lactose tolerance, caffeine metabolism and sweet tooth. Researchers are seeking 3,000 participants to reach the statewide goal of 10,000. Participation is free, and all Florida residents are eligible. The study is being conducted in partnership with population-genomics company Helix. The study site is located at 664 Cherry Street, Winter Park, FL 32789. Each Monday in March, volunteers can walk in for no-cost genetic testing with no appointment needed, from 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. To learn more about the study, visit or email wholemeflorida@




APRIL 2021

VOLUSIA-BREVARD | | GRAND ROUNDS Parrish Healthcare Offers Breakthrough Sleep Apnea Treatment

Space Coast Health Centers Now Open

Parrish Healthcare is among the first health systems in the state to offer Inspire, a breakthrough treatment option for obstructive sleep apnea patients unable to use or get benefit from the traditional continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine. Similar to a pacemaker, the Inspire device is implanted under the skin and uses a remote control to synch your breathing while sleeping. Inspire works inside the body with a patient’s natural breathing process to treat sleep apnea. Mild stimulation opens the airway during sleep, allowing oxygen to flow naturally. The patient uses a small handheld remote to turn inspire on before bed and off when they wake up. The Inspire system consists of a stimulation lead and a breathing sensor, powered by a small battery. The system is placed under the skin of the neck and chest through three small incisions during an outpatient procedure. Most patients return home the same day and take over-the-counter pain medications as needed. Inspire therapy is for patients who can’t tolerate or get consistent benefit from traditional CPAP therapy, however the line of treatment for sleep apnea is CPAP therapy. The CPAP system takes air from the room and humidifies the air that blows into the mouth and/or nose of the patient through a hose and face mask. That continuous air keeps the airway open to prevent snoring and trouble sleeping. Patients must first fail on CPAP before sleep doctors consider them for Inspire. The inspire sleep apnea treatment is the latest advancement offered as a part of Parrish Healthcare’s sleep medicine services. Other services include consultations with sleep physicians, sleep coaching, mask fitting, oxygen testing and narcolepsy testing. For more information and to learn if the Inspire treatment may be right for you, visit

Space Coast Health Centers (SCHC) is now open and accepting patients to provide behavioral health, OB/GYN and primary care services to north Brevard County and the surrounding communities. The center is open from 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Monday-Friday with locations in Titusville and Cocoa, Florida. “We are proud to begin providing unconditional, high-quality services to patients regardless of their ability to pay,” said SCHC CEO Arvin Lewis. “74 percent of north Brevard County patients that can access a healthcare center, don’t receive all the services they need. Our principles of C.A.R.E. (compassion, accountability, responsiveness and effectiveness) keep us focused as we deliver services to the medically underserved.” To fill the gap needed for broader healthcare services, SCHC collaborates with area hospitals/health systems; state and local agencies; foundations and other local healthcare providers. This healthcare model allows for proactive patient-focused preventative care. SCHC will offer telemedicine for those who prefer or need care from the comfort of their home. For more information about SCHC and services provided, please visit

Halifax Health Sees Record Number of Trauma Patients During 2021 Bike Week Preliminary numbers have been released regarding the number of trauma patients treated at Halifax Health during the ten days of Bike Week 2021. Total patients during Bike Week experiencing trauma and admitted to Halifax Health numbered 150 in 2021. Of those admissions over the 10 days of Bike Week, 91 of the admitted patients were related to Bike Week. This number compares with an average of 62 admissions over the last 4 years. The trauma team was activated 97 times in the ten-day period. Fourteen of the patients were passengers, and just under half of the patients were wearing helmets. According to Lindsay Martin, RN and Director of Nursing, “our community saw an unusual number of total patients needing trauma care during Bike Week. We had more than the usual number of accidents at home and work places. At one point we had four patients needing trauma care at the same time.” Halifax Health has the only trauma center in Volusia County and Flagler County and partners with the Volusia Sheriff’s Department to provide helicopter transport. “Halifax Health was created to take care of the people of the community and that includes those visiting the community. We have the highest level of care in the area and amazing Team Members who save lives every day,” said Jeff Feasel, Halifax Health President and CEO.

NORTH CENTRAL FLORIDA || GRAND ROUNDS Ocala Health Begins Construction On 36 Bed Inpatient Rehabilitation Unit and Emergency Room Expansion at West Marion Community Hospital Area residents, local officials and business leaders were present as Ocala Health leadership broke ground today on the site of the new 36 bed inpatient rehabilitation unit at West Marion Community Hospital. The $33M project at West Marion Community Hospital will add over 40,600 square feet of new space dedicated to inpatient rehabilitation services. This project will include the addition of 36 inpatient beds, bringing the total to 222 inpatient beds. The Emergency Department at West Marion Community Hospital is also expanding as part of this project, with the addition of six low-acuity beds that will create a fast-track space, an expanded waiting room, as well as a new emergency room entrance. Additional parking will be added as well, with 49 parking spots being added for a total of 783 parking spaces. The project is scheduled to be completed in August 2022. “With the recent addition of advanced neurological and stroke care capabilities at Ocala Health and the certification of Ocala Regional as the region’s only comprehensive stroke center, in addition to our trauma services, we recognized the need to offer additional rehab services to these patients,” says Gabe Bullaro, CEO, West Marion Community Hospital. “Our team has demonstrated excellent care in response to trauma and stroke and now we are excited to offer the next step in the treatment process, leading to a comprehensive continuum of care. This inpatient rehab unit will be an environment for patients to regain function of day-today activities. For example, there will be a specialized fitness facility and dining facilities so patients can practice these activities before returning home. This investment reflects our continued commitment to deliver the highest quality of care for the patients of Marion County.”

Poinciana Medical Center Resumes Construction on Full-Service Emergency Department in ChampionsGate Poinciana Medical Center, an affiliate of HCA Healthcare’s North Florida Division - Orlando Market, announced construction has resumed at the site of its future freestanding emergency department, ChampionsGate ER. The project was first announced in the summer of 2019 and temporarily postponed at the onset of the pandemic. Now, construction of the 24/7 emergency care facility for patients of all ages has resumed with the goal of opening to the public in summer 2021. Located at 8460 Champions Gate Blvd., the 11,000-square-foot facility will feature 11 private patient care rooms and a dedicated trauma room, as well as laboratory and imaging services, including a CT scanner, ultrasound and X-ray technology. “Creating immediate access to high-quality emergency care for residents across Central Florida has never been

Hospitals for spine surgery according new research released by Healthgrades, the leading resource that connects consumers, physicians and health systems. The hospitals that have achieved the Healthgrades America’s 100 Best Hospitals for spine surgery have demonstrated exceptional quality of care. “Now more than ever, consumers understand the importance of hospital quality and starting to become more diligent when researching where they receive care,” said Brad Bowman, MD, Chief Medical Officer, Healthgrades. “When selecting a hospital, consumers can feel confident in the America’s 100 Best Hospitals for orthopedic surgery for their commitment to quality care and exceptional outcomes.”

Ocala Regional Medical Center and West Marion Community Hospital Named America’s 100 Best Hospitals for Spine Surgery Ocala Regional Medical Center and West Marion Community Hospital are one of America’s 100 Best





APRIL 2021

more important,” said Chris Cosby, CEO at Poinciana Medical Center. “With the establishment of our new freestanding emergency department, we’ll bring state-ofthe-art emergency care to the fast-growing ChampionsGate area. With lifesaving care available close to home, ChampionsGate residents and families can rest easy knowing that we’re here if they need us.” The new freestanding emergency department will employ approximately 30 emergency medicine physicians and staff, including Board Certified physicians specializing in emergency medicine on site 24/7. Nurses will be certified in Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support (ACLS) and Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS), with advanced training in trauma, pediatric emergency and neonatal resuscitation. To learn more, please visit

This commitment to quality care is showcased through the excellence Ocala Health has achieved in the spine surgery service line. Ocala Health has established itself as #3 across HCA Healthcare in spine surgeries and is ranked #1 in spine surgeries within the North Florida Division of HCA Healthcare. “This achievement is a demonstration of the patient-focused approach adopted by our multi-disciplinary team in the care of patients in need of spine surgery,” says Praveen Reddy, MD, Neurosurgeon, Ocala Health. “We are very proud to be recognized as a top 100 hospital for spine surgery. This award demonstrates our continued commitment to providing the highest quality care for our patients.”