Lee Health Hires New Physician Leaders

Physicians Join Nurse Leaders in Shared Leadership Model

(Fort Myers, Fla. – Sept. 22, 2017) --- Lee Health recently welcomed four new physicians to fill the roles of acute care medical officer (ACMO) at each of its hospitals. The ACMO works with a nurse vice president of patient care services (VPPCS) in a shared leadership model called a dyad. The dyad is focused on collaboration, standardization, quality, safety, reliability and patient experience.

“The dyad leadership model delivers a more synergistic, collegial approach to operations, and allows our physicians to have a stronger leadership role in the processes, procedures and overall management of our health system,” explains Larry Antonucci, M.D., MBA, Lee Health President & CEO. “The ACMO and VPPCS strengthen and complement each other, and lead by example through their own collaboration.”

The hospital dyads include:

  • Wendy Piascik, VPPCS and Harry Alberti, M.D., MBA, ACMO – Cape Coral Hospital
  • Holly Muller, VPPCS and Jonathan Velez, M.D., ACMO – Gulf Coast Medical Center
  • Cindy Brown, VPPCS and Eric Appelgren, M.D., MBA, ACMO – HealthPark Medical Center
  • Jennifer Higgins, VPPCS and Scott Wolf, D.O., MPH, ACMO – Lee Memorial Hospital

Prior to joining Lee Health, Dr. Alberti served as the chief medical officer and vice president for pharmacy, lab and environmental services at Thompson Peak Medical Center, which is part of HonorHealth, in Phoenix. He earned his medical degree and completed a family medicine residency at the University of Puerto Rico Medical School in San Juan, Puerto Rico. He earned his Master of Business Administration at the University of Arizona in Tucson, Ariz. Dr. Alberti is board certified in family medicine by the American Board of Family Physicians and is a member of the American Academy of Family Practice and the American College of Physician Executives.

Dr. Velez previously served as vice president of medical affairs for Hartford HealthCare Corporation Central Region in Hartford, Conn. He earned his medical degree at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine in Philadelphia, and completed an emergency medicine residency at the University of Virginia Health Sciences Center in Charlottesville, Va. He is a Fellow of the American College of Emergency Physicians, a member of the Healthcare Information Management Systems Society and on the Board of Advisors for the Association of Medical Directors of Information Systems.

Prior to joining Lee Health, Dr. Appelgren served as vice president of operations and clinical services for Saint Anthony’s Medical Center in St. Louis. He earned his medical degree at Loyola University Stritch School of Medicine in Chicago. He completed a general surgery internship with the United States Air Force at Kessler Air Force Base in Mississippi, an anesthesiology residency at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, and he earned his Master of Business Administration at the University of Colorado. Dr. Appelgren is a Diplomate of the American Board of Anesthesiology and a member of the American Society of Anesthesiologists. He also is a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives and the American Association for Physician Leadership.


About Lee Health

Since the opening of the first hospital in 1916, Lee Health has been a health care leader in Southwest Florida, constantly evolving to meet the needs of the community. A non-profit, integrated health care services organization, Lee Health is committed to the well-being of every individual served, focused on healthy living and maintaining good health. Staffed by caring people, inspiring health, services are conveniently located throughout the community in four acute care hospitals, two specialty hospitals, outpatient centers, walk-in medical centers, primary care and specialty physician practices and other services across the continuum of care. Learn more at www.LeeHealth.org


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