AMDA Honors Top Physicians During LTC Medicine—2014

March 7, 2014
Perry Gwen Meyers,

Columbia, MD – AMDA – The Society for Post-Acute and Long-Term Care Medicine and the AMDA Foundation announced top award winners during AMDA Long Term Care Medicine – 2014, the organization’s annual conference held in Nashville, TN, last week. 

Lilliana Oakes, MD, CMD, Medical Director of Buena Vida Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in San Antonio, TX, is AMDA’s 2014 Medical Director of the Year (MDOY). Among her many accomplishments, Dr. Oakes established a medical executive committee for attending physicians who have residents in the facility. She also organized quality assurance and psychotropic reduction committees. Additionally, she implemented a palliative care program called “Caring Hearts and Peaceful Pathways,” as well as falls and restraints reduction programs, all of which resulted in better outcomes such as fewer injuries and hospital readmissions.

Dr. Oakes established a community education and outreach program to educate and inform the public about issues such as Alzheimer’s disease and advance care planning. She also secured funds to make a short film about Alzheimer’s that was produced in English and Spanish.

“She takes time with patients and family members, and she never rushes through conversations. She hosts get-togethers for families that need or want more time to talk. She listens to staff and values our opinions. She understands that we are close to patients and often know them best,” said Felecia Washington, EdD, MBA, MSN, Buena Vida’s Director of Nursing. “She is the most involved medical director I’ve ever met. I probably will never meet another physician like her.”

The MDOY award, established in 2007, recognizes medical directors who set an outstanding example of what the physician leader in post-acute/long term care can accomplish with knowledge, experience, passion, and teamwork, as well as the ability to multi-task, stay on top of clinical and quality improvement innovations, and lead facilities in providing quality care.

Also during the meeting, AMDA announced the recipients of its William Dodd Founder’s and James Pattee Excellence in Education awards. Jeffrey Burl, MD, CMD, is the Dodd recipient, and Heidi White, MD, Med, CMD, received the Pattee Award.

Dr. Burl is Director of the Reliant Medical Group’s Division of Geriatrics in Worcester, MA. He is also the director of the clinic’s nursing home and its geriatric nurse practitioner programs. Additionally, he is medical director of Masonic Health Care Systems, a continuing care retirement community that includes a nursing home, rehabilitation center, and hospice services.  He has been on the AMDA Core Curriculum Program faculty since 2004, and he was the Chair of the Core program from 2010-2013. He worked on the Core Curriculum Revision Committee when the program was revamped 10 years ago.

Dr. White is Associate Professor of Medicine at the Duke University School of Medicine and Vice Chief for Clinical Affairs in the Duke Department of Medicine Geriatrics Division in Durham, NC. Additionally, she is Senior Fellow of the Center for the Study of Aging and Human at the Duke University Medical Center. She also is medical director of Croasdaile Village Retirement Community, also in Durham. Dr. White is currently Co-Chair of the AMDA Foundation Futures Program. She is also on a recently formed committee to develop a curriculum supporting AMDA’s new competencies for attending physicians in post-acute/long-term care. Last year she was the Annual Meeting Program Committee Chair. 

Dr. Oakes received her award during the opening general session on Friday, February 28 at the 2014 AMDA Long Term Care Medicine Symposium. She also is featured in a cover article of the March issue of Caring for the Ages magazine. Drs. Burl and White received their awards during the 2014 conference’s Closing General Session on Sunday, March 2.