Maryland-National Capital Homecare Association

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Since 2018, Sydney Palinkas has served as the Community Educator at the ElderSAFE Center, an award-winning program of Charles E. Smith Life Communities. In her role, she builds awareness around the issue of elder abuse through outreach, interactive trainings and coalition building. In addition to training around the DC-metro area, Sydney has presented for the National Domestic Violence Hotline, the National Adult Protective Services Association, and AARP Maryland. Previously, she worked at the National Network to End Domestic Violence as the Transitional Housing / Positively Safe Coordinator. Along with her focus on violence prevention work, Sydney has been focused on serving and advocating for older adults through volunteer work. She has experience working and leading activities in senior centers, long-term care facilities, and independent living homes for older adults. She currently volunteers with Heartland Hospice, Meals on Wheels of Central Maryland, and the Jewish Council on Aging. Sydney is a Licensed Graduate Social Worker in the District of Columbia, with a Bachelor of Arts in Human Services and Sociology from Northeastern University and a Masters in Social Work from Boston University.

David Chandler is the Director of Payer Relations for American Association for Homecare.  David has worked to build relationships with payers across the country and assist HME providers in ensuring their patients have access to quality equipment and care.  He continues to work with state and regional associations throughout the nation to find solutions and fight for regulatory and legislative change. David has worked in the industry since 2003, most recently with Liberty Medical Specialties as Director of Reimbursement & Government Affairs.  He has considerable experience in sales, operations, reimbursement, payer, & government relations. 

Chandler’s service to the HME community also includes a term as President of the Atlantic Coast Medical Equipment Services Association.  He served as Chairman of the Medicare Jurisdiction C Advisory Council and was a member of AAHomecare’s Regulatory Council and State Leaders Council.  Chandler was elected to the North Carolina Board of Pharmacy/ DME Subcommittee in 2016.

With over 25 years of experience, Barbara Citarella  RN, BSN, MS, CHCE, NHDP-BC, is internationally known for her expertise in the areas of disaster preparedness and leadership. She specializes in emergency disaster planning, bioterrorism, health care development and operations. She provides education to law enforcement and government agencies, health care providers, private sector, first responders, national and state associations in all aspects of disaster preparedness. Barbara serves as  a subject matter expert to ASPR TRACIE which stands for  Health and Human Services  Assistant Secretary of Preparedness and Response  Technical Resources, Assistance Center, and Information Exchange. This exchange was created to meet the information and technical assistance needs of  healthcare coalitions, healthcare entities, healthcare providers, emergency managers, public health practitioners, and others working in disaster medicine, healthcare system preparedness, and public health emergency preparedness. .

Barbara was appointed to the National Quality Framework's Healthcare Readiness Committee to create a national framework for response which will be out shortly. She has also been invited to MIT to attend the June meeting on Building Health Equity through Resilient Power.

Jennifer Gibson Osburn is a Registered Nurse with over 26 years of combined staff nurse, clinical management, administrator, and technology experience. She is a certified OASIS specialist and Home Health coder and uses this diverse background to engage attendees across the nation.  Past seminar experience includes presentations for The Joint Commission, CHAP, NAHC, and numerous state home health associations.

As a seasoned Medicare regulatory thought leader, Jennifer regularly trains on PDGM, Conditions of Participation, Emergency Preparedness, Infection Control, QAPI, Documentation, Coding, OASIS, agency operations and management.  Her heart for teaching and supporting home health professionals is the foundation on which she has launched a private home health education practice, Home Centered Insights. She is committed to the success of the home care industry and currently serves TAHCH’s Clinical Practice, Medicare, and Government Affairs committees.

John Kelly has been with U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) for eleven years.  First at the SBA’s Washington, DC Metropolitan Area District Office, serving as a Business Opportunity Specialist for the 8(a) Program.  Where I had approximately 90, 8(a) Certified Firms in my portfolio, that I assisted with their business development needs. Then moving into my current position at SBA’s Headquarters, Office of the National Ombudsman, where I work with small business owners resolve issues with federal government agencies and promote the Office of the National Ombudsman’s mission.  Prior to that, I spent 15 years as a Business Development and Finance Director for the Corporate Office of a national franchisor where I assisted small business owners in the capitalization of their start up or expansion of their small businesses.

John E. Gallagher is Vice President of Government Relations for the VGM Group, Inc. where he is responsible for advocating on behalf of VGM members/DME providers to Congress, the Administration, and federal agencies. Gallagher has also amassed thousands of miles, traveling across the country to educate both the state associations and independent providers on regulatory and government issues. Additionally, Gallagher has worked tenaciously to promote upstanding service within the home medical equipment industry.  He is a board member of both the Healthcare Quality Association for Accreditation (HQAA) and the Fraud Eradication Advisory Team (FEAT).  John received his undergraduate degree from the University of Northern Iowa and a master’s degree in management from the State University of New York – Binghamton.  Prior to his 2002 employment with VGM, John served as a U.S. Army Signal Corp. Officer from 1983 to 1989.  He also held a number of executive positions in the medical equipment industry. 

Bill Dombi, Esq. is the CEO of the National Association for Home Care and Hospice.  Bill specializes in legal, legislative, and regulatory advocacy on behalf of patients and providers of home health and hospice care. With over 37 years of experience in health care law and policy, Bill Dombi has been involved in virtually all legislative and regulatory efforts affecting home care and hospice since 1975, including the expansion of the Medicare home health benefit in 1980, the formation of the hospice benefit in 1983, the institution on Medicare PPS for home health in 2000, and the national health care reform legislation in 2010. With litigation, Dombi was lead counsel in the landmark lawsuit that reformed the Medicare home health services benefit, challenges to HMO home care cutbacks for high-tech home care patients, lawsuits against Medicaid programs for inadequate payment rates, a nationwide class action against then-HCFA for its failure to enforce the federal HMO Act, litigation directed against the "Interim Payment System" for the Medicare home health benefit, and a lawsuit addressing the so-called Medicare “case mix creep adjustments” in 2008-2010.

Brian Steinbach is Of Counsel in the Employment, Labor & Workforce Management practice, in the firm's Washington, DC, office. Mr. Steinbach's experience includes advising clients on and litigating employment, labor, disabilities, non-compete, confidentiality, benefits, wage and hour, and general litigation matters before the courts, arbitrators, and administrative agencies at the federal and state level. He represents and advises clients in Sarbanes-Oxley and other whistleblower litigation and conducting investigations. He has experience in advising and representing health care related entities, restaurants, and other clients on and developing personnel policies and procedures, employee manuals, and separation agreements as well as counseling clients on union-avoidance strategy and in union-organizing campaigns, defending employers in connection with unfair labor practice charges under the National Labor Relations Act, and negotiating collective bargaining agreement. Mr. Steinbach has experience with litigating Court of Appeals cases raising issues under Title VII, the ADEA, ERISA, and the National Labor Relations Act

After law school, Mr. Steinbach clerked for the Hon. Raymond J. Pettine, Chief Judge of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. He then joined the National Labor Relations Board in Washington, DC, as counsel to Board Members Truesdale and (later) Hunter, before transferring to Chicago to serve as a Field Attorney. He later entered private practice in Chicago before moving back to Washington. Mr. Steinbach lectures frequently on various employment law topics for associations, businesses, and other groups.

Margie Hackett is a Transition Guide Nurse Manager at Suburban Hospital, a member of Johns Hopkins Medicine.  In the 34 years she has been employed there, Margie has had several roles in helping patients manage their chronic health issues at home, navigate the health system, understand their medications, and learn self-management. The last 10 years she has been specifically working on transitions of care from the hospital to home setting or skilled nursing facility to prevent readmissions through patient education, enhancement of discharge instructions, improved understanding of Palliative Care/Advanced Care Planning, and improvement of communication with various community resources and services available to patients.  Margie is a member of the hospital’s patient education workgroup, Montgomery County’s Primary Care Coalition HEALTH Partnership, and is actively involved with Nexus Montgomery, a collaborative created by all 6 Montgomery County Hospitals. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing from University of Maryland, is a certificate holder as a Guided Care Nurse from Johns Hopkins Nursing, and is Board Certified in Gerontology by the American Nurses Credentialing Center.

Danna L. Kauffman, Esq. joined Schwartz, Metz & Wise, in 2013 and became a partner in 2017. Throughout her career Danna has worked in various levels of State government and in the private sector. She has established a reputation as a problem solver and consensus builder who can handle complicated issues in a trusted and professional manner. Beginning in 1997, Danna served as Counsel to the then House Environmental Matters Committee, working on complex health care issues, and then spent three years as a senior legislative advisor to Governor Glendening, where she worked on a wide range of issues in the areas of health, environment, civil rights and homeland security. Immediately prior to joining the Firm, Danna served as the Senior Vice President of Public Policy for LifeSpan Network, the leading senior care provider association in Maryland. Raised in Howard County, Maryland, Danna holds an undergraduate degree in Economics from Towson University, where she graduated cum laude. In 1996, she graduated with honors from the University of Maryland School of Law, where she was an editor on the Maryland Law Review. Prior to entering State government service, Danna began her career as a litigation attorney at Smith, Somerville and Case, P.A. Danna resides in Annapolis with her husband and two children.

Dr. Jonathon Ringo is a highly regarded healthcare leader who understands what it’s like to be a patient, too. Diagnosed with rare blood cancer at age six, he saw first-hand the power of compassionate, expert medical care. The experience resulted not only in his amazing survival – a one in 10 chance at the time – but paved the way to new treatments that greatly improved survival rates for future patients with acute myelogenous leukemia (ACL). It also motivated Ringo to become a doctor to care for others the way he had been cared for.

Today, as the CEO of Convergence Telehealth, he leads by example by doing something he feels passionate about: offering empathetic, high-quality care by assembling expert clinicians and using the latest technology to deliver medical care to patients wherever they are. Dr. Ringo, a board-certified OB-GYN, boasts a broad background of professional and personal experience in healthcare. Most recently, he served as the President and Chief Operating Officer of Sinai Hospital in Baltimore, Md., a 500-plus bed hospital and the flagship of the “LifeBridge Health” system. Sinai is Maryland’s largest independent teaching and research hospital. Dr. Ringo also served as senior vice president for LifeBridge Health, which includes four hospitals, more than 20 urgent care centers, retail pharmacies, ambulance and home health services, accountable care organizations, an assisted living center, and more than 800 physicians. As Senior VP, Dr. Ringo led the creation of the health system’s international call centers in the Philippines and Israel and was responsible for the system’s move from fee-for-service to value-based care. The LifeBridge Health Value Based Care Program is one of the most successful Accountable Care Organizations in Maryland because of its outstanding quality scores and impressive financial performance.  
Dr. Ringo was the first Chief Medical Information Officer at LifeBridge Health, where he also was appointed Vice President of Clinical Transformation. In the latter role, he led the system in case management, population health, medical informatics, and ambulatory quality. He focused on closing the gap in the communities’ health disparities while developing centers of excellence, strengthening financial and quality outcomes. Prior to LBH, he led the Population Health Informatics group at Northwell Health.

He earned an undergraduate degree in pre-med at Brandeis University and earned his medical degree from the International University of Health Sciences. He served as the administrative chief resident of Sinai Hospital during his medical training. Dr. Ringo has received many awards and recognition's in research and teaching, including the Excellence in Teaching Award from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in 2010 and 2012, and was recognized as one of the “Physician Leaders of Hospitals & Health Systems to Know” by Becker’s Hospital Review in 2017, 2018 and 2019.

Ada Horsfall, MBA, MHA, MD is the Director of Care Management at Lifematters. She oversees the Care Management program at Lifematters, serving the D.C, Maryland and Virginia metro region, with an additional office in Pennsylvania coming soon.

Ada is a patient-centric business professional with a passion for holistic senior care and management. A member of the Aging Life Care Association (ALCA), Ada is passionate about helping seniors improve their quality of life, maximize their independence, and age in place with the dignity and respect they deserve. With over 13 years experience in the healthcare industry, Ada is committed to enhancing seniors’ experience as they navigate the complex healthcare system. She works collaboratively across various health systems and with diverse teams to support seniors as they age in place.

Over the past 30 years, Daniel M Gold has pioneered, grown and led businesses from startups to mature entities in the healthcare services, pharmaceutical, and technology sectors. Mr. Gold is currently the COO of Lifematters, one of the largest home care companies in the Mid-Atlantic region.  Prior to joining Lifematters, he was the COO and EVP of a homecare platform providing service in 11 states. Mr. Gold has also held leadership positions with several public and private healthcare and technology companies including American Medical Alert, Vitel Net, Living Independently and LCOR Senior Living.

He started his early career working in the assisted living industry as President of LCOR Senior Living and Vice President of Healthcare and Ancillary Services at Sunrise Senior Living. Mr. Gold holds an MBA/JD and is a national recognized speaker on healthcare and technology issues. 

Nykesha Scales has worked with the Medicare Program for 18 years, with the majority of her years of service spent in the Provider Outreach & Education Department.  During her tenure with CGS, Nykesha has also served as a Congressional Liaison, Tier II Customer Service Representative and a Compliance Analyst.  Nykesha received her M.B.A from Liberty University, as well as a bachelor's in Business Management from Guilford College with concentrations in Organizational Communication and Human Resources.  Ms. Scales’ primary responsibilities include conducting training through in-person, teleconference and webinar events. Her primary focus is developing and delivering educational programs and learning tools to assist Medicare-certified home health and hospice providers.

Before joining Home Care Pulse, Erik Madsen was an executive at a global company focused on improving human wellness, where he spent nearly twenty years in roles that spanned marketing, sales, operations, and customer support. Erik joined Home Care Pulse as COO seven years ago and took the reins as CEO in 2018. In addition to experience as a consultant and educator, Erik has been a featured speaker at conferences and events across the country. Erik is a committed mentor who prioritizes the individual development of the people within his organization and his sphere of influence. Outside of work, Erik enjoys exploring the Idaho outdoors, coaching youth baseball, and spending time with his family.

Jamie Caputo is a Seasoned veteran of the HME industry with over 20 years’ experience. He's held various positions in sales and sales management within Software & Technology, Adherence Management, Tele-Health, Resupply Management along with Fulfillment, Consulting, Research and Development, Operations, Retail and Mobility. He’s currently the National Services Sales Manager for Philips Respironics over the past 5 years leading their efforts in remote setup and adherence management.

Katie Wehri has over 25 years of experience in home health and hospice, holding several executive-level positions, with extensive and direct knowledge of industry operations, regulation, accreditation standards, interpretation and compliance, quality assessment, and performance improvement programming and compliance programs. She is the Director of Home Health and Hospice Regulatory Affairs for the National Association for Home Care and Hospice (NAHC) and is educated with a bachelor's degree in health care administration and human resources from the Bowling Green State University in Ohio.

As a national speaker, consultant and facilitator, Amy Lafko leverages over 20 years of healthcare leadership experience, including home care.  She is a certified in DISC, Driving Forces and Emotional Intelligence as well as the 7 Stages of Growth™.  

Amy Lafko founded Cairn Consulting Solutions with the knowledge that you need to grow your people to grow your business.  Amy focuses her work on the employee experience that is derived from skilled leaders and aligned teams.  Whether through team dynamics sessions, development workshops, or consulting, Amy provides expertise to improve the entire lifecycle of your team.  From hiring to engagement, she assists clients in decreasing turnover, increasing productivity and customer satisfaction.  Amy has earned her MSPT from Ithaca College, her MBA from Loyola University of MD.  

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