Episode #157 – Meet Dr Nirav Vakharia, a Practicing Internist Responsible as GM for Babylon Health North America. We Dive into the Metrics to See How Everyone Wins in the Babylonian Future. Seven Aims – Check!

In this episode Ron chats with Dr. Nirav Vakharia, VP/GM of US Operations at Babylon Health. Here, they discuss value-based care, Babylon Health’s mission, the importance of AI in healthcare, access, and more. They also do a deep dive into what makes Babylon Health’s model so special.

Prior to becoming the VP/GM of US Operations at Babylon Health, Dr. Nirav Vakharia held leadership roles in value-based care and quality & safety at the Cleveland Clinic and Partners Healthcare. He remains a practicing primary care physician.

At the Cleveland Clinic, Dr. Vakharia was the Associate Chief Quality Officer overseeing transitions of care, readmissions reduction, and ambulatory quality for the health system. He then became the Associate Chief of Value Based Operations and President of Accountable Care, roles in which he led the development of its population health strategy to improve the clinical and financial outcomes for over 400,000 at-risk lives. Key to this success was the implementation of a team-based population health care model across its 70 primary care practices; scaling its house calls practice for frail and vulnerable seniors; and the creation of numerous tech-enabled home-based programs including ED @ Home, Hospital @ Home, and SNF @ Home.

Dr. Vakharia received his B.S in Biomedical Engineering from Case Western Reserve University and M.D. from Harvard Medical School. He completed training in internal medicine and a chief residency at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, MA. Before entering medicine he worked as a middle school math and science teacher in an underserved public school in Washington, DC.

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Episode #156 – Shawn Strash is the Self-Proclaimed Reformed CEO of 20 Hospitals. Here, He Discusses the Good, Bad, and Ugly that a Leader of a Big Has to See and Implement Daily.

This episode features Shawn Strash, Former CEO of Numerous Hospitals. Here, he discusses what he has learned from his years in healthcare, how COVID-19 has changed the healthcare landscape in America, and more.

Shawn Strash is a seasoned healthcare executive with more than 25 years in the space including: hospital operations, hospital start-ups, best-practice turn-around specialist, hospital and ASC mergers and acquisitions. He has been a top-level executive in publically-traded companies as well as owner of numerous private healthcare operations. He understands the intricate detail of ASC/hospital start-ups, turn-arounds and operations. He is also an ASC/hospital revenue cycle/billing expert. Over his career, Shawn has been CEO of 21 hospitals including two denovo facilites, has had operational responsibility for more than 75 ASCs and has also opened and acquired over three dozen ASCs. He is highly respected in the space.

Shawn has directed a number of turn-arounds where he served as CEO over multiple hospitals nationally. He also provides consulting services for hospital/healthcare systems and numerous clinic based physicians. He is a hospital/ASC consultant for Health Rosetta. Note that Shawn is not your typical “big-box” hospital CEO. Shawn works lean process, leads his team with a conciliatory approach, identifies the problem, works the action plans and lives the mantra: get it done.

As CEO of Landmark Hospitals, Shawn was hired to turn the company around and to add additional service lines. During his time as CEO, Shawn added four additional revenue streams to the Landmark Hospital portfolio including surgery, destination medicine, inpatient rehabilitation and Wound Care. Shawn grew the company from 7 to 9 hospitals. He cut over $1 million in corporate overhead shortly after he started with Landmark. Additionally, he increased profitability by over 340% on a YOY basis. In fact, 2017 was the best year operationally for Landmark Hospitals in over five years. He accomplished this via his measured yet bold leadership style by increasing revenue while at the same time reducing overall expenses. Regarding the implementation of surgical service lines in a Long-term Acute Care Hospital (LTACH): Shawn was told it couldn’t be done/that’s never been done, but that didn’t stop him. In six months, Shawn identified the roadblocks, educated payors, recruited the busiest and best surgeons and with his team executed on a highly successful surgical service line located in an LTACH. In fact, surgical services revenue and bottom-line out-paced typical LTACH revenue and profit. When he left Landmark, annual results reported an additional 104% improvement in profitability over prior year.

Prior to joining Landmark, Shawn was an owner and CEO of Arise Healthcare System in Austin Texas. Arise was comprised of a physician syndicated hospital, three ASC‘s and more than seven outpatient locations with 105 physician partners invested in eleven different entities. Shawn was instrumental in improving processes for Arise Healthcare, a system which performed more than 20,000 surgeries every year but when he started at the helm, was in an overall loss position of over $10,000,000. He was hired and was offered equity in Arise upon achieving the goal of a turnaround to take Arise from that significant loss to positive earnings and to position the company for a lucrative sale which he did ahead of schedule and beyond pricing expectations.

Shawn previously served as Senior Vice-President of Corporate Services, Chief Compliance Officer and as a board member for AMSURG, now Envision. At the time, AMSURG had 10,000 employees and owned and operated over 250 outpatient surgery centers. Shawn had responsibility over six divisions. While at AMSURG, Shawn was instrumental in establishing anesthesia as a revenue stream. He also converted the entirety of the company’s rev-cycle function from a cost center to a profit center. Both of these accomplishments contributed significant EPS yield. Under his leadership and although he was again told it couldn’t be done, Shawn started the Hospital/ASC JV division: he and his team executed numerous profitable hospital/ASC JVs; in fact, he completed four in the new division’s first year.

Additionally, he has served as CEO of a number of physician-owned and general medical acute care hospitals including Paradise Valley Hospital in Phoenix Arizona, Oro Valley Hospital in Tucson Arizona, Redmond Regional Medical Center in Rome Georgia and Palmyra Medical Center in Albany Georgia. Shawn spent 10+ years with HCA initially as director of mergers and acquisitions and then on to operational responsibility for more than a dozen surgery centers and two hospitals in the Eastern Group. It is notable that he originated, developed and operated the only profitable pediatric surgery center in the entire company.

Shawn is originally from Canada. He served in the Canadian Coast Guard as a search and rescue specialist and later Coxswain (Captain) of numerous rescue units. With dual Masters degrees, he is also certified in Healthcare compliance. Married to Norma-Jean for 30 years, together they have raised three children and have two grandchildren.

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Episode #155 – All-In Bundled Pricing Surgery at 10-20% Cost of the Bigs? 300+ Procedures? Infection Rates, Complication Rates, Readmits that Plunge to Nil? Yup, When the Very Best Team Up at the Newest Market Surgery Center like Wellbridge Surgical. Meet Dr. Ron Piniecki it’s Co-Founder.

This episode features Dr. Ron Piniecki, Co-Founder at WellBridge Surgical. Here, he discusses what inspired him to launch WellBridge, being mentored & inspired by Keith Smith, the future of free market surgery centers in the US, the importance of competition in healthcare, and more.

Transplanted from New Orleans, Dr. Piniecki graduated from Indiana University Medical School and practices anesthesiology in Indianapolis, IN. His inspiration to co-found WellBridge was based on his belief that all patients have a fundamental right to understand the care they are receiving and what that service will cost.  Gaining understanding of the pricing methods of the hospitals and the effect that these profit margins have had on patients, families, employers and the healthcare system have galvanized his efforts and desire to make real change in the way that surgical care is delivered.

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Episode #154 – John Canion,NP Round 2. What’s Really Going on in the Most Trusted Profession 20 Years Running.

In this episode Ron chats with John Canion, a NP practicing Emergency Medicine in Texas. Here, they continue their conversation on the current state of Nurse Practitioners in the US, the role and responsibilities of NPs, working in the ER, needing to revamp the NP education system, and more.

John Canion graduated from Nurse Practitioner school at Abilene Christian University in 2005. He is certified as a Family Nurse Practitioner and as an Emergency Nurse Practitioner.  I have worked in fields that include Family Practice, Emergency Medicine, Urgent Care, Hospitalist Medicine, Urgent Care, Associate Professor for Family Practice Nurse Practitioners, and Critical Access Medicine. He has worked closely with national organizations on NP education and just finished a yearlong assignment with the American Association of Nurse Practitioners on their education committee. He gives lectures on many topics related to NP practice including business, contracts, scope of practice, and clinical information.  Over the last year he has been staffing covid relief. He is currently practicing Emergency Medicine in San Angelo, Texas.

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Episode #153 – Meet Robert Palmer, CEO of PotentiaMetrics. Employers Can Now Offer Cancer Patients Wisdom Selecting the Best Treatment Options Based on 20 Years of Data on 2M Cancer Patients.

In this episode Ron chats with Robert Palmer, CEO at PotentiaMetrics. Here, Robert discusses what inspired him to start PotentiaMetrics, and how his firm works by providing trusted and actionable healthcare insights that uncover what works, for whom, under what circumstances, and with what tradeoffs, including economic costs. He also talks about the importance of factoring in personal values when it comes to making or suggesting healthcare decisions. Robert also shares some of their success stories as well as their future plans.

Robert Palmer is the CEO of PotentiaMetrics. He has over 20-years of industrial experience in developing analytic models for healthcare payers and providers, life sciences, professional sports, financial services, private equity, and manufacturing. He is best known for developing models to define individualized clinical and economic outcomes for cardiac surgery, home health care, and cancer. He developed outcomes models used by many of the largest medical technology companies and top academic centers. His work with Sorin Group defined the clinical and economic value of Minimally Invasive Cardiac Surgery. His work with Medtronic defined the reduction of complications and associated costs for using cerebral oximetry in cardiac surgery. He worked as a researcher and consultant at Washington University in St. Louis School of Medicine, where he co-developed models for personalized cancer care. His work has been published in Harvard Health Policy Review and Becker’s Hospital Review. He has received awards and honors from GuideWell Innovation, the American Cancer Society, Predictive Analytics World Conference, and South by Southwest. He was adjunct faculty at Washington University in St. Louis Olin School of Business top-ranked Entrepreneurship Program from 2007-2013. He is the founder and co-founder of several companies. Robert holds an MBA from Washington University, Olin School of Business, and a BS in Business Administration from Regis University. He is a member of the YPO (Young Presidents Organization) and is currently the Education Chair for the Healthcare Network.

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Episode #152 – John Canion Was a NP Instructor and With Great Passion and Insight into the Gaps in Nurse Training That No One is Openly Talking About but Should be. Chock Full of Insights, This Show.

In this episode Ron chats with John Canion, a NP practicing Emergency Medicine in Texas. Here, John discusses the current state of Nurse Practitioners in the US, how the growth in the field has not had enough quality control, and the disconnect between the academic community & clinical practice. He also dives into the gaps of training and in wide variety of other topics impacting nurse practitioners and primary care.

John Canion graduated from Nurse Practitioner school at Abilene Christian University in 2005. He is certified as a Family Nurse Practitioner and as an Emergency Nurse Practitioner.  I have worked in fields that include Family Practice, Emergency Medicine, Urgent Care, Hospitalist Medicine, Urgent Care, Associate Professor for Family Practice Nurse Practitioners, and Critical Access Medicine. He has worked closely with national organizations on NP education and just finished a yearlong assignment with the American Association of Nurse Practitioners on their education committee. He gives lectures on many topics related to NP practice including business, contracts, scope of practice, and clinical information.  Over the last year he has been staffing covid relief. He is currently practicing Emergency Medicine in San Angelo, Texas.

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Episode #151 – CrowdHealth is GoFundMe Meets Uber 2 Way Ratings for Healthcare – A Next Gen Way to Pay. Meet Andy Schoonover – It’s Visionary Founder.

In this episode Ron chats with Andy Schoonover, Founder & CEO of CrowdHealth. Here, he discusses what inspired him to start CrowdHealth, a new way to pay for healthcare with no premiums, no copays, no deductibles. Just one monthly total to get you access to everything they offer their community. The community is paid for by month contributions to the community that are then used to fund the community’s healthcare bills. He also does a deep dive into how CrowdHealth works, the importance of it being straightforward and easy for the patient to use, and more.

After graduating from the University of Virginia, Andy started his career at Host Marriott Corporation (now Host Hotels & Resorts, NYSE: HST) in the Acquisition and Development group and completed transactions valued at approximately $1.5 billion. He then moved to Silicon Valley to attend Stanford Business School where he got that entrepreneurial itch. As his friends headed off to Google, Facebook, and other high flying tech companies after graduation, Andy and Chris Hendriksen, his business school roommate purchased Valued Relationships, Inc (VRI) , a remote patient monitoring company in Dayton, Ohio. Andy became CEO and served in that role for five years. After a fourfold growth in revenues, the majority of VRI was sold to Pamlico Capital in 2014. VRI investors received a gross return of approximately 9x their investment. In 2o21 Andy founded CrowdHealth, a community powered alternative to insurance on a mission alleviate the burdens associated with huge healthcare costs. Today Andy lives in Austin, Texas with his wife Stephanie where they are devoted parents to their daughter Grace’s legacy, younger daughters Ava and Caroline, and their pup, Butler.

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Episode #150 – These Ten Lies in Healthcare are Really the Ten Opportunities. Here is Who and What is Being Fixed on the Fringes in 2022 in Primary Care and by Extension, Healthcare with Ron Barshop, Host of the Show.

Here is who and what is being fixed on the fringes in 2022 in Primary Care with Ron Barshop, Host of the Show. Here is the 2022 edition of the popular yearly “10 Lies” episode of Primary Care Cures.

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Episode # 149 – Omar Matuk-Villazon Launched the First DPC Clinic Inside a Medical School for the 40% of People Underinsured in the Neighborhood. Rounding in Direct Primary Care – Never Easier.

In this episode Ron chats with Omar Matuk-Villazon, Chief Medical Officer at UH College of Medicine. Here Omar discusses, what caused him to start a DPC clinic within the medical school, the importance of encouraging medical students to pursue primary care, the importance of mental health in primary care, telemedicine, and more.

Omar Matuk-Villazon, M.D., M.B.A., is a clinical assistant professor of pediatrics and chief medical officer at the University of Houston College of Medicine. He contributes to clinical practice, education, curriculum development and research.  As the chief medical officer, he is responsible for the oversight of the College of Medicine’s new clinical enterprise, a direct primary care practice, as well as enhancing the patient experience.

He is also the on-site medical director and a practicing pediatrician at the Lone Star Circle of Care Clinic at UH.

Previously, Matuk-Villazon worked as associate medical director and pediatrician at Legacy Community Health. He was also a practicing physician and the managing director of Consultoría en Salud HELCO, a contract research organization based in Mexico City focused on    health economic evaluations. Matuk-Villazon has spent more than a decade developing patient- centered medical models, designing value-based programs, and solving complex problems in the health care industry and academia.

His research is focused on value-based care, telehealth and health care entrepreneurship. He is launching a comprehensive direct primary care model for the uninsured at the College of Medicine and his work focuses on improving primary care practice in the community. He is actively involved with the health care entrepreneurial community as an advisor, consultant, and mentor.

A board-certified pediatrician in Mexico and the United States, Matuk-Villazon is a diplomate of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the Mexican Pediatric Society. He is an active member of the National Hispanic Medical Association and AAP.

He received his medical degree from the Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico in Mexico City, trained in Integrative Medicine & Homeopathy at Homeopatía de Mexico, and completed a Pediatric Residency at the University of Miami-Jackson Memorial Health Center. He was part of Leadership Houston Class XXXIII. Matuk-Villazon also earned a Master of Business Administration degree from Rice University.

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Episode # 148 – Darshan Kulkarni Has a Lot to Say About Pharmacy Trends —In Burnout, Bigs Playing Unfairly, and How PharmDs Work Closely with a PCP. DarshanTalks is a Highly Regarded Podcast and Source for the Pharmacist.

This episode features Darshan Kulkarni, Principal Attorney at Kulkarni Law Firm. Here, Ron and Darshan do a deep dive into the changing pharmacy ecosystem and the pros and cons that come with it. They explore pharmacies having more urgent care clinics in them, what Google and Amazon are doing in the space, some of the pitfalls the nation is facing when it comes to the pharmaceutical industry, and more.

Dr. Kulkarni is the Principal Attorney of the Kulkarni Law Firm and focuses his practice on helping FDA regulated companies successfully bring their products to market. He has over 20 years of experience in providing legal, medical, and regulatory services, and has served as a pharmacist for over a decade—making him uniquely well-positioned to help clients through all stages of the development process. He advises clients on issues varying from FDA regulatory strategy, clinical trial negotiations, manufacturing audits, FDA compliant promotional and non-promotional review, FDA responses, to genericization and other interdependent processes.

Prior to starting the Kulkarni Law Firm, Darshan was the Global Corporate Counsel for an international pharmaceutical holding company, where he provided services including writing licensing and employee contractor agreements, warning letters and SOPs. He was also responsible for developing a quality system for the facility and engaging with the FDA.

In his spare time, Darshan regularly contributes to his pharmacy podcast Gavel & Pestle, and has written for several books on federal regulatory law including multiple editions of Research Compliance Professional’s Handbook.

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