General Session Highlights

General Session Highlights

Friday, March 23

8:00 AM – 10:30 AM

Keynote Address
We are the Ones: The Future of PA/LTC and our Role in Leading the Change
Cheryl Phillips, MD, CMDR

Throughout the course of the Society, much has been said about the changes in post-acute and long-term care (PA/LTC). But never have we faced such transformative shifts; in payment, in regulations; in public policy and in delivery models. This session will provide a current state of affairs for each of these focus areas, and address both challenges and opportunities for clinicians in PA/LTC. We will discuss the role and power of data that is translated into information. We will address new settings for services, new payment vehicles, and the role of technology in driving these changes. Lastly, we will address how each of us can, and must, help shape PA/LTC with our expertise and with our commitment to improve the care for the individuals we serve. “We are the ones we have been waiting for.”

Cheryl Phillips, MD, CMDR, is the President and CEO of the Special Needs Plans Alliance, a national leadership organization focused on special needs and Medicare-Medicaid plans for vulnerable adults. Prior to this, she served as the Senior Vice President for Public Policy at LeadingAge. She has extensive public policy experience in PA/LTC, including nursing homes, home health, hospice, and PACE. She is a past president of AMDA – The Society for Post-Acute and Long-Term Care Medicine and American Geriatrics Society. She is a fellowship-trained geriatrician with years of hands on clinical and medical director experience.

Saturday, March 24

8:00 AM – 10:30 AM

The Society’s Top Policy Issues 2018
Updates on the top Society activity on policy issues including the following: legislative advocacy, communications with government agencies, updates on the health care reform implementation efforts, and on proposed changes to PA/LTC facilities requirements for participation.
Karl Steinberg, MD, CMD, Chair, Public Policy Committee; David Nace, MD, CMD, Vice Chair, Public Policy Committee; Alex Bardakh, MPP, Director, Public Policy and Advocacy


Who Will Care for me When I am Old and Frail?
Joan Teno, MD, MS

Each day, 10,000 people turn 65. They are faced with a final phase of life that can include multimorbidity, prolonged period of functional impairment, and health care transitions from hospital to PA/LTC settings. Physicians have increasingly focused their practice on one setting of care much like the rapid growth of hospitalists, physicians who focus solely on the care of hospitalized patients. Similar trends are occurring in the PA/LTC sector. In this lecture, the temporal trends in the care of frail older people in the hospital and PA/LTC settings, such as nursing facilities, will be characterized. The implications of these temporal trends and need for future research will be discussed.

Joan Teno, MD, MS, is a health services researcher with more than 25 years of experience conducting research which has impacted end-of-life care in the U.S. She is a board-certified internist with Certificates of Added Qualifications in geriatrics and hospice & palliative medicine. Dr. Teno was a hospice medical director for 18 years and is currently working at the University of Washington on the Palliative Care Consult Service. She is also the project leader of a program project grant, recipient of a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) Health Policy Investigator Award, and an investigator on the Centers for Medicare& Medicaid Services (CMS) contract on creating the Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (CAHPS) Hospice Survey and updating the hospice payment model. In recognition of this body of work, Dr. Teno was part of the study panel of the 2014 Institute of Medicine (IOM) report “Dying in America: Improving Quality and Honoring Individual Preferences Near the End of Life.”

Sunday, March 25

8:30 AM – 11:00 AM

Anne-Marie Filkin Lecture
Thriving Amidst Frailty and Decline
Eleanor McConnell, PhD, RN

Much of the discussion regarding frailty among older adults focuses on how to prevent decline through more targeted assessment and biomedical interventions. This session will present perspectives from European literature on thriving among frail older adults as a means of enhancing outcomes for residents in PA/LTC. Eleanor McConnell, PhD, RN, will emphasize how a thriving perspective aligns with ongoing trends in health care, such as those emphasizing person-centered approaches and increased focus on social determinants of health. Challenges and opportunities faced by PA/LTC staff and their leaders seeking to promote resident thriving will be highlighted, such as balancing biomedical and person-centered approaches to care, and reconsidering quality indicators and leadership models.

Eleanor McConnell, PhD, RN, is Associate Professor and Director of the Geriatric Nursing Center of Excellence in the School of Nursing at Duke University, a Senior Fellow of the Duke Center for the Study of Aging and Human Development, and a Core Investigator at the Department of Veterans Affairs Geriatric Research, Education and Clinical Center (GRECC) in Durham, NC. Her research and clinical scholarship focuses on improving quality of life among older adults with complex chronic illnesses, particularly among those who are frail, and those who suffer from major neurocognitive disorders. She has devoted her career to improving quality of life and quality of care among those residing in LTC, and her work has been recognized through the Ewald Busse Award from the NC Department of Health and Human Services for her impact on state-level LTC policy. Her work is published in leading medical and nursing journals, and is co-editor of the pioneering textbook “Matteson and McConnell’s Gerontological Nursing: Concepts and Practice,” first published by Elsevier in 1988.


Closing Keynote
The Future is Not What it Used to Be! Innovating for an Unpredictable Tomorrow
Arif Nazir, MD, CMD

Successful innovation requires leadership’s commitment to a culture of rapid experimentation, failure, and iteration. In the words of Louis Gerstner, the iconic retired IBM CEO, “culture isn’t just one aspect of the game – it is the game.” Health care organizations that have historically excelled in now outdated physician-centric culture, are faced with the challenge of implementing technological solutions for patient-centered care delivery. Are we, the members of the PA/LTC community, ready to embrace a new culture? Arif Nazir, MD, CMD, relied on innovation to address a real challenge in his facility. Confronted by a dissatisfied patient who described the health care system as worse than the local burger joint, his team transformed the traditional care-delivery model to a new approach: Patients as the CEO of their health. The success of this approach convinced Dr. Nazir of the value of inventive problem solving, not only at work but also in daily life. Dr. Nazir will highlight his experiences that shaped his perspectives on the power of innovation. As the Chair of the Innovations Platform Advisory Council for the Society, he will share his vision to transform the Society culture to lead meaningful health care innovations.

Arif Nazir, MD, CMD, is a Geriatrician and an Associate Professor of Clinical Medicine in University of Louisville. In his current role as the Chief Medical Officer for Signature HealthCare he oversees delivery of innovative clinical programs in more than 125 skilled facilities across ten states. Among many other previous roles, Dr. Nazir provided leadership as the medical director of a unique CMS Innovations project, OPTIMISTIC, that significantly reduced the avoidable hospitalizations of long-stay nursing home patients in 19 Indiana facilities. Dr. Nazir is the Vice President of the Society and also Chairs the Innovation Platform Advisory Committee for the Society.