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2017 Election
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PRESIDENT-ELECT

      



 

 

JEFF H. GERTSCH, MD
Associate Professor of Neurosciences
University of California San Diego School of Medicine

Biography
Dr. Gertsch began significant biomedical research in neurosciences in 1998 after receiving his BS in biochemistry at the University of California San Diego (UCSD), the year before he started medical training. In addition to his general clinical training at the University of Hawaii School of Medicine, he developed parallel lines of interest in neurological aspects of altitude medicine and electrophysiology, eventually securing a neurology residency at the Stanford University hospital where he was introduced to surgical neurophysiology. He went on to fellowship training in surgical neurophysiology at the University of California Los Angeles before securing a faculty appointment in the Department of Neurosciences at UCSD in 2008. He subsequently built and currently directs the Interventional Neurophysiology program at the UCSD Medical Center, in addition to running an active research program in electrophysiology. Dr. Gertsch has served as a board member with the American Society of Neurophysiological Monitoring since 2012 and is the current chair of the Clinical Practice Guideline Revision Committee. He additionally serves as the Medical Director of the Western Society of Electrodiagnostic Technologists. He is currently a funded investigator with the Office of Naval Research in electrophysiology, in addition to industry collaborative research in novel electrophysiological device development.

Education

  • 6/1998: Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry and Cell Biology - University of California - San Diego
  • 5/2003: Medical Doctorate - University of Hawaii
  • 6/2004: Medical Internship - Maricopa Medical Center
  • 6/2007: Neurology Residency - Stanford University
  • 6/2008: Clinical Neurophysiology Fellowship (Surgical Neurophysiology concentration) - University of California Los Angeles 

Professional Affiliations

  • Associate Professor of Neurosciences, UCSD School of Medicine (from 2008)
  • Director, Interventional Neurophysiology Service, UCSD Medical Center (from 2008)
  • Guest Assistant Professor, Department of Biological Science and Technology, National Chiao Tung University, Taiwan (from 2012)
  • Principal Investigator and Primary Subject Matter Expert, Various Contracts - current active project "Body-worn wireless neurophysiological monitoring network (Phase II STTR), Department of Defense (Office of Naval Research/BUMED/DARPA, initial funding from 2009)
  • Board Member, American Society of Neurophysiological Monitoring (from 2012)
  • Medical Director and Board Member, Western Society of Electroneurodiagnostic Technologists (from 2012)
  • Primary Consulting Neurologist, UCSD Free Clinics (from 2010)
  • Other professional roles as board member, investigator, or consultant, past and present


Questions

How do you feel you can contribute to the leadership of ASNM? What strengths, passions, and/or talents do you hold that would benefit ASNM?

I have been involved with the ASNM on the board for several years, and am ready to provide a more direct roll through my unique experiences. As an academic surgical neurophysiologist, I am actively engaged in monitoring as my primary work, but additionally perform scholarly research and teaching, as well as advocacy for our field. I feel I can share the perspectives with a broad range of ASNM members.

With changes in health care service delivery and reimbursement, what and how do you feel you can contribute to keep ASNM moving forward in the right direction?

The current healthcare, financial, and regulatory environment is always changing and becoming increasingly complex. As a dedicated clinical neuromonitorist, I am fully invested in the long-term health and outlook for our field. To this end, I am currently invested in delivering the next generation of our ASNM professional practice guideline, updated to take into account new practice patterns and financial requirements. I am working on the new ASNM technology committee to establish a dialogue with our major hardware providers in setting a direction for the future.

ASNM constantly seeks ideas of how to better serve our membership, be it through education, resources, representation to other professional entities, connections and networking or the means of advancement. What do you think ASNM could offer its members that would provide value?

Education is always the core of a medical society’s offerings and should remain so for the ASNM. In addition, advocacy is an unseen but important area to focus the ASNM’s attention. I am also interested in expanding the ASNM’s web portal and its ability to provide a ‘face’ to the rest of the medical community and to our patients, something our members would value linking with their practice website.

Additional Information

I was honored when asked by an influential colleague to stand as a nominee for society president. The field of surgical neurophysiology & the ASNM together are at a pivotal crossroads, struggling with growing pains typical of any emerging medical subspecialty & additionally fending off significant economic pressures. The society needs an experienced neuromonitorist and good leader with a clear view of our field's past and future direction, if elected I will advocate for you & our field's future.

 


PRESIDENT-ELECT

 

 

 

 

Brett L. Netherton , MS, CNIM, FASNM, FASET
Managing Director
Signal Gear, LLC

Biography

Brett has been very fortunate. After studying amazingly fun stuff in undergrad and grad school, he now enjoys a career that he is very passionate about. Brett has a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering, followed by a master’s degree is exercise physiology. Fascination with spinal pattern generators led Brett to seek a career in neuroscience. He was blessed to find the wonderful field of IOM. After years of working as an IOM tech, Brett is now fortunate to be able to spend his days studying how to design and manufacture electrodes. A good day is when he can spend hours reading scientific literature followed by hours in his electrical and fabrication lab. Signal Gear, the company that Brett recently started, is his fifth company.

Education 

  • BS Electrical Engineering
  • MS Exercise Science

Professional Affiliations

  • ASNM Board Member 2009-2011
  • ASNM Board Member 2012-2016
  • ASNM Vendor Committee Chair 2009-2012
  • ASNM Finance Committee Chair 2011-2013
  • ASET Advanced Technology Taskforce 2010-2012
  • ASET Member 2005-present
  • AANEM Member 2012-present
  • ACNS Member 2012-present

Questions

How do you feel you can contribute to the leadership of ASNM? What strengths, passions, and/or talents do you hold that would benefit ASNM?

Many ASNM members have more education and IOM talent than I do, though I do have great passion for IOM and hold a special loyalty to ASNM.

What could I add? Perhaps the things that have helped a scatterbrained guy like me have some success in business… project management tools, tracking charting systems, and simple goals and deadlines. ASNM is filled with bright, passionate people willing to work to advance the society. These folks can accomplish much. My goal would be to help empower them.

With changes in health care service delivery and reimbursement, what and how do you feel you can contribute to keep ASNM moving forward in the right direction?

While the challenges of changing delivery models and reimbursement are important to ASNM members, I must admit to having no particular expertise in this area. Regarding needs where ASNM should address service delivery models and reimbursement, the most important task in my opinion would be to work with the Board of Directors to identify and empower those in the society with expertise in those areas. They should comprise the team to address the needs appropriately.

ASNM constantly seeks ideas of how to better serve our membership, be it through education, resources, representation to other professional entities, connections and networking or the means of advancement. What do you think ASNM could offer its members that would provide value?

How to add value to the ASNM membership is the most important question facing our society. There are thousands of IOM clinicians out there. Why aren’t they all ASNM members? Have we studied all of the information available to us to tease out information about how to make it easier for all IOM team members to decide to attend our meetings, listen to our webinars, and take advantage of membership? The resources and data to find these answers, innovate and add value are available. Let us do so!

Additional Information

  • I am quite honored to be nominated for President, but please consider several things:
  • I have commercial interests and own an electrode company. Should I be allowed in an ASNM leadership role?
  • I am not currently in clinical practice. Should the ASNM President be in clinical practice?
  • I am not a doctor. Does ASNM need a doctor (MD, PhD, AuD, etc) for president?
  • If you have reservations with me, Jeffrey Gertsch MD is a qualified candidate who would make an excellent ASNM President


Members at Large

 

 

 




Payam Andalib, MD, PhD, MS, CNIM
Regional Director / Quality Assurance Manager
Safe Passage Neuromonitoring

Biography

Dr. Payam Andalib is the Regional Director and Quality Assurance Manager at Safe Passage Neuromonitoring and a Senior Surgical Neurophysiologist. He earned his Medical Diploma from Shaid Beheshti Medical School in Tehran-Iran and his Master’s and Ph.D. degrees in Physiology and Neurobiology with concentrations in Electrophysiology from the University of Connecticut. He has also finished two Postdoctoral Fellowships with concentrations in Electrophysiology at UConn. Payam has over 8-years’ experience in the field of IONM, monitoring more than 1,200 simple and complex spinal, cranial and vascular surgeries and is CNIM certified. His interest in teaching led him to work closely with the faculty at Physiology and Neurobiology Department at the University of Connecticut to develop the graduate Intraoperative Neuromonitoring Certificate program.

Education
Doctor of Medicine (M.D.): August 1997 Shahid Beheshti Medical School, Tehran, Iran
Major: Medicine Master of Science (M.S.) May 2004 University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT
Major: Physiology and Neurobiology Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.): May 2005 University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT
Major: Physiology and Neurobiology 
Postdoctoral Fellow: April 2005 – August 2008 Physiology and Neurobiology Department University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT 
Certified in Neurophysiologic Intraoperative Monitoring (CNIM): September 2009 American Board of Registration of Electroencephalographic and Evoked Potential Technologists (ABERT)


Professional Affiliations 

  • American Society of Neurophysiological Monitoring, 2013-Present
  • The Neurodiagnostic Society, 2009 - Present
  • Iranian Medical Society, 1997 - Present
  • Society of General Physiologists, 2008 - 2009
  • Biophysical Society, 2001 - 2009
  • Society for Neuroscience, 2005 - 2007
  • Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), 2004 – 2006 

Leadership Positions
Career:
Quality Assurance and Risk Management Manager Safe Passage Neuromonitoring, September 2013 – Present
Connecticut Regional Director Safe Passage Neuromonitoring, January 2014 – Present
Director, Emergency Department, Modarres General Hospital, Iran, December 1997-August 1999

Community:
Ashford park Condominium board president, December 2006 - November 2007
Ashford park Condominium board vice president, April 2005 - December 2006
Ashford park Condominium board member, August 2002 - April 2005

Questions:

How do you feel you can contribute to the leadership of ASNM? What strengths, passions, and/or talents do you hold that would benefit ASNM?

Years of experience in Medicine and research in addition to over 8 years of experience in IONM place me in a unique position to help ASNM broaden its outreach to medical and research communities. I am extremely passionate about education in IONM and exploring innovative ways to promote the education. I have many ideas about how ASNM can be instrumental in raising awareness about IONM and create a coalition of the experts in the field to seek ways to promote the field and its utilization.

With changes in health care service delivery and reimbursement, what and how do you feel you can contribute to keep ASNM moving forward in the right direction?

The first step in this regard is to create a strong campaign to approach law makers in Washington and insurance companies’ decision makers and raise awareness about the IONM field. I believe the approach can be much more effective if ASNM can bring a strong group of IONM supporters from the medical world (surgeons and neurologists) together with a group of experts in the IONM field (neurophysiologists) to present a case regarding the importance of IONM backed by existing database as evidence.

ASNM constantly seeks ideas of how to better serve our membership, be it through education, resources, representation to other professional entities, connections and networking or the means of advancement. What do you think ASNM could offer its members that would provide value?

I believe ASNM can be a source of change by initiating an effort to collect supportive data for effectiveness of IONM in regards to preventative value, positive predictive value, etc. This can be achieved by identifying the appropriate topics by the ASNM board and requesting members to participate in contributing data in regards to those specific topics. Over time, a comprehensive national library of IONM data will be created and can be an integral part of providing proof of IONM effectiveness.

Additional Information
The method of delivery of education will shape up the future of IONM in my opinion. Healthcare fields like Medicine and Nursing have clear paths to graduation: attending an academic program with pre-determined courses including certain hours of clinical training. However, for IONM, there are no standard paths. ASNM can take a leading role in supporting formal standardized academic IONM education and training. This will be a major step towards uniform and high level education in the IONM field.


 

 








Gene K. Balzer, PhD, FASNM
Chief Executive Officer
Allied Managed Processes, LLC

Questions

How do you feel you can contribute to the leadership of ASNM? What strengths, passions, and/or talents do you hold that would benefit ASNM?

First and foremost, I am a diligent worker with absolute passion for ASNM (as one of the remaining founding members), likewise with that background and legacy I believe it is vitally important to transition the organization to the next generation of IONM providers, those shaping the organization beyond the traditional operating room to include the entire field of neurophysiological monitoring in patient care.  I ask for your support for this last term in ASNM leadership, a term I will focus my energy on successful supporting the transition, and those with the skills, capacity and desire to lead the next generation of ASNM.

With changes in health care service delivery and reimbursement, what and how do you feel you can contribute to keep ASNM moving forward in the right direction?

I believe I bring two contributions to the Board in this area:  1st, with over 15 years of direct hospital and health system executive experience, I viewpoint of the landscape of health care metrics and economics from a much broader perspective than only IONM.  2nd, with over 10 years of IONM executive experience, I provide a viewpoint of the broad base of IONM service delivery models providers, academic/integrated practices, large private practice and regionalized private practices, whereby IONM technical and professional providers. Additionally, as a primary resource of governmental program reimbursement, I have a depth of historic knowledge the reimbursement paradigms.  

ASNM constantly seeks ideas of how to better serve our membership, be it through education, resources, representation to other professional entities, connections and networking or the means of advancement. What do you think ASNM could offer its members that would provide value?

I believe the value proposition of ASNM is multi-dimensional. While the organization cannot be all things to all people, the organization may therefore excel in specific areas and partners (the interconnections and networking) to fulfill the overall Mission.  It is a delicate balance, but vigilant focus in each dimension and the strategies set forth brings the greatest value. For example, if all the energy is exerted on education (e.g. conferences and webinars) and little energy is exerted in intra-society relations, than ASNM functions as an educational island, not an integrated participant meeting all members’ diverse needs.

 


 







Willy Boucharel, MS, CNIM, DABNM
Surgical Neurophysiologist - Biomedical Engineer
Ambulatory Practice Director
Children's Hospital Colorado

Biography

Willy Boucharel is the Ambulatory Pratice Director at Children’s Hospital of Colorado. He is also a Clinical Neurophysiologist and Biomedical Engineer

Education

  • Diplomate from the American Board of Neurophysiological Monitoring 2004, 2014
  • Certification Examination in Neurophysiologic Intraoperative Monitoring 2002, 2012
  • Master of Science in Biomedical Technologies 2001 Associate’s Degree in Mathematics and Physics 1996 

Professional Affiliations

  • Childrens Hospital Association - member since 2012
  • ASET member since 2008
  • ASNM member since 2004


Questions

How do you feel you can contribute to the leadership of ASNM? What strengths, passions, and/or talents do you hold that would benefit ASNM?

Strong engineering background and interest in new technologies. Good understanding of hospital leadership dynamics and upcoming changes in healthcare environment and value-based reimbursement system

With changes in health care service delivery and reimbursement, what and how do you feel you can contribute to keep ASNM moving forward in the right direction?

Insight from hospital administrator prospective with a global understanding of how other medical and surgical practices are adjusting to upcoming healthcare changes.

ASNM constantly seeks ideas of how to better serve our membership, be it through education, resources, representation to other professional entities, connections and networking or the means of advancement. What do you think ASNM could offer its members that would provide value?

Annual independent review and assessment of equipment and technologies.
Intensify the development of accredited educating programs and investigate independent licensing of some levels of profession.


 








Matthew Alan Eccher, MD
Assistant Professor
SpecialtyCare

Biography

I attended public school in a middle-sized city in central Maine, from kindergarten straight up through senior year of high school. I then had the great good fortune to be admitted to Harvard, where I learned exactly how brilliant truly brilliant people are, and exactly how much the laser-focused can accomplish. I also learned I am neither of those things – but did well enough to get into medical school, which has allowed me to pay the bills. Remaining something of an idealist -- or maybe just a geek -- I chose Neurology as my field. It is clearly geekiness and not idealism that has led me to subspecialize in those fields that apply EEG and evoked potentials to clinical medicine. Most recently, my professional practice has been devoted nearly exlusively to intraoperative monitoring. “Devoted,” of course, is better reserved for my regard for my young family, who I’m now thrilled to have growing up in a Cleveland that has finally broken its long sports funk.

Education
Harvard University – AB, Psychology, cum laude, 1994
University of Cincinnati College of Medicine – MD, 1999
Penn State University – MS, Public Health Sciences, 2009

Professional Affiliations  
American Society of Neurophysiologic Monitoring
American Clinical Neurophysiology Society
American Association for Physician Leadership
American Academy of Neurology

Questions:

How do you feel you can contribute to the leadership of ASNM? What strengths, passions, and/or talents do you hold that would benefit ASNM?

In recent years, I have developed interests in quality improvement and cost-effectiveness approaches to healthcare; to date, this has mostly been applied in neurology and epilepsy care. I am interested in bringing these to bear on the challenges that face the field of IONM in the U.S. presently. I recognize that patience and persuasiveness, not confrontation or passive-aggression, are the necessary means by which to accomplish work in organizations, and that will be how I comport myself.

With changes in health care service delivery and reimbursement, what and how do you feel you can contribute to keep ASNM moving forward in the right direction?

Recent legal-administrative developments in American medicine are largely born of the recognition that we as a country have not been getting what we’ve been paying for out of our healthcare system. Innovative cooperative effort must be developed for us as the profession of IONM to demonstrate our utility. My own opinion is that we should do all that we can to partner with our surgeon colleagues to clarify as best as possible which types of cases merit our involvement.

ASNM constantly seeks ideas of how to better serve our membership, be it through education, resources, representation to other professional entities, connections and networking or the means of advancement. What do you think ASNM could offer its members that would provide value?

Our bedrock commitment should remain maintaining first-rate quality in regional meetings, webinars, and the Annual Meeting. It should be possible to template the execution of a meeting agenda so that each meeting’s hosts can build on the work of past years. The next most important thing is developing the interprofessional relationships that will permit clarification of best, most cost-effective practices of IONM.

Additional Information
It is my intent to use the agenda of the 2017 meeting I am co-hosting in Cleveland to catalyze surgical intersocietal relationships and investigations. I believe my joining the Board concurrently will significantly facilitate the progress we can make going into this meeting and thereafter. I anticipate greater effectiveness approaching representatives of surgical Societies able to present myself as an ASNM Board member than I would encounter presenting myself as just some worker in this field.








Li G. Huang PhD, DABNM, CNIM
Senior Surgical Neurophysiologist
Safe Passage Neuromonitoring

Biography
After graduating from the Ph.D program I began working in IONM and earned the CNIM and DABNM. Five presentations at ASNM for research.

Education
Ph.D. in Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences from University of Louisvlle, KY. 2015
Fellowship in Clinical Neurophysiology from Surgical Monitoring Associate, PA, 2006

Professional Affiliations

ASET 2006
ASNM 2006

Questions

How do you feel you can contribute to the leadership of ASNM? What strengths, passions, and/or talents do you hold that would benefit ASNM?

1. Strong education and training background
2. Have passion in intraoperative Neuromonitoring
3. Proven track of excellent work
4. Presented at ASNM annual conference 5 times

With changes in health care service delivery and reimbursement, what and how do you feel you can contribute to keep ASNM moving forward in the right direction?
Integrating intraoperative monitoring research with surgery and rehab, finding common ground.

ASNM constantly seeks ideas of how to better serve our membership, be it through education, resources, representation to other professional entities, connections and networking or the means of advancement. What do you think ASNM could offer its members that would provide value?

Education and Research Opportunities










Diana Cornelia Koutinas, BS, CNIM, R.EPT
Intraoperative Neurophysiologist
Revolution Monitoring

Biography
Began IOM 2004, trained with Biotronic, worked with Dr.Nosnik TX, Northwest Neuro WA, Hanover Med NY, Evokes Inc OH, H&S TX, currently working at Revolution Monitoring

Education

B.S. Biology Syracuse University 2003
Neurodiagnostic Training Program at Biotronic, 2004

Professional Affiliations 
ASNM, ASET, Texas Neurodiagnostic Society

Questions

How do you feel you can contribute to the leadership of ASNM? What strengths, passions, and/or talents do you hold that would benefit ASNM?

I have extra time to dedicate. I am Type A/organized, and pay attention to detail! I live with honesty and hard work, and all former employers love me! I genuinely care ab IOM, get along w. all people

With changes in health care service delivery and reimbursement, what and how do you feel you can contribute to keep ASNM moving forward in the right direction?

Education within field, other med. professions, & public. Presence at surgeon based conferences. Encourage more research publications. More aggressive in lawmaking/lobbying. State licensure for IOM.

ASNM constantly seeks ideas of how to better serve our membership, be it through education, resources, representation to other professional entities, connections and networking or the means of advancement. What do you think ASNM could offer its members that would provide value?

More involved discussion board for unrestricted flow of ideas. Education for CNIMs on billing process. Small fraction of CMEs for related conferences ie. NASS, etc. for personal growth.

Additional Information

I am also a personal trainer & Muay Thai/MMA fighter at 35 years old, formerly 345.5 lbs, so my work ethic extends beyond IOM! I am disciplined and dedicate my life to health of the body for myself and others.


 








James S. Zuccaro, DC, DABNM, CNIM
Director of Intraoperative Monitoring
Shriners Hospital for Children-Philadelphia

Biography
Since 2011, I have been serving as the Director of Intraoperative Monitoring at Shriners Hospital for Children. I was brought in to develop this program from the ground up including staff, policies, protocols, etc. After a period of 3 years, due to the success of this program, our corporate board has determined that all the high risk cases will be brought to Philadelphia. Additionally, based on the Philadelphia model, we have developed procedural guidelines for intraoperative monitoring in all 22 Shriners hospitals. We are also actively involved in research having been formally granted IRB approval. We are currently working on 4 projects. We are also developing an animal lab for neuromonitoring with approved grant funding. These projects will help to provide evidence based research for neuromonitoring.

Prior to my work at Shriners Hospitals for Children, I have worked for both vendor groups and hospital based programs. From this experience I have gained invaluable knowledge in different practice models and environments. Prior to my career in Intraoperative monitoring, I managed 2 multidisiplinary outpatient clinics that included neurodiagnostic testing. In addition, I served as an insurance consultant for medical claims. This has given me invaluable knowledge to coding and editing processes, as well as determining medical necessity.

Education
New York Chiropractic College-Doctor of Chiropractic
Canisius College-Bachelor of Science in Biology

Professional Affiliations 
ASNM

Questions

How do you feel you can contribute to the leadership of ASNM? What strengths, passions, and/or talents do you hold that would benefit ASNM?

My work experience in both contract and hospital based positions has fostered a unique knowledge on how to work with numerous disciplines, policies and corporate entities. I have worked with various insurance companies in establishing practice and reimbursement guidelines based on scientific literature, thus I can offer some new and unique perspectives to the leadership of the ASNM. I hope given the opportunity, to use my unique skill set and knowledge to serve the membership of the ASNM.

With changes in health care service delivery and reimbursement, what and how do you feel you can contribute to keep ASNM moving forward in the right direction?

One of my goals is to establish communication between the various professional groups and aid in the formation of common guidelines and goals that can be jointly sponsored. These position statements will aid to foster clear cut goals, guidelines, and reimbursement models. Finally, our goals may be achieved through working together with other professional societies that are involved in the field of Neuromonitoring.

ASNM constantly seeks ideas of how to better serve our membership, be it through education, resources, representation to other professional entities, connections and networking or the means of advancement. What do you think ASNM could offer its members that would provide value?

I would like to develop and implement both a political action committee (PAC), as well as a public marketing committee. This effort needs to involve all professional societies in the field of Neuromonitoring. This will provide value to the profession through educating the public and provide legislative support for reimbursement issues. Third, we as a society lack a professional educational model, residency, and unified credentialing entity.

Additional Information
Insurance companies are using data driven analysis to determine reimbursement and this data will be the future reimbursement model. We need to establish a strong foundation on education, training, and evidence based research. From this foundation, we can achieve our reimbursement and professional goals, as well as attract young professionals in the field to join our society. I shall use my knowledge, expertise, skills, and hard work to benefit the growth of the society and the profession.