Career Pulse

West Brookfield Practice Welcomes Fitzpatrick to Team

WEST BROOKFIELD — West Brookfield Family Practice has announced the addition of Dr. Robert John Fitzpatrick as a full-time physician in adult medicine.

Fitzpatrick is currently the associate medical director for Johnson Medical Specialists, P.C. in Enfield, Conn. In this capacity, Dr. Fitzpatrick has served as on-site occupational medicine consultant at multiple corporations, as well as a hospital-based occupational medicine clinical director. Occupational medicine is the branch of medicine dealing with the study, prevention, and treatment of workplace injuries and occupational diseases and with the promotion of optimal health and safety in the workplace.

“We are excited to welcome Dr. Fitzpatrick back to this region to provide quality care to families,” said Dr. Jeffrey Jones of West Brookfield Family Practice. “Many people may remember Dr. Fitzpatrick when he had a busy internal medicine practice at Baystate Mary Lane Hospital in Ware from 1994 to 1997.”

Fitzpatrick is a member of the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine and the American College of Physician Executives. He received his medical degree from the University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine in Biddeford, Maine. He also received a master’s degree in Public Health from the UMass School of Public Health in Amherst. He is board-certified in internal medicine and occupational medicine.

Liptzin Co-authors Article in American Journal of Psychiatry

SPRINGFIELD — Dr. Benjamin Liptzin, chairman of the Department of Psychiatry at Baystate Medical Center, and professor and deputy chair of the Department of Psychiatry at Tufts University School of Medicine, is the lead author of an article titled “The Future of Psychiatric Services in General Hospitals” in the October 2007 issue of the American Journal of Psychiatry, the official journal of the American Psychiatric Association.

Liptzin, along with co-authors Dr. Gary L. Gottlieb, president of the Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and Dr. Paul Summergrad, chair of the Department of Psychiatry at Tufts, note in their article that inadequate insurance payments for services provided by psychiatric units in general hospitals have led to closings, downsizing, or off-campus transfer of inpatient psychiatric units. However, they assert, these units are essential for treatment of coexisting medical and psychiatric conditions, appropriate care of psychiatric patients in the emergency room, and education of medical trainees.

“Psychiatric services are under siege in this country, and unless there is change, especially providing adequate reimbursements, then the future of psychiatric services in general hospitals is worrisome,” said Liptzin, voicing his concerns which led to the article.

In addition to better reimbursement by private insurers, the authors’ list of proposals includes new revenue sources for departments of psychiatry, as well partnerships between hospitals and community services to ensure efficient psychiatric care.

Carson and Brahmavar Join Franklin Medical Center ED

GREENFIELD — The Emergency Department at Baystate Franklin Medical Center recently expanded its team with the addition of two new physicians, Dr. Ameet Brahmavar and Dr. Renée Carson. Both come to BFMC following completion of their residencies in Emergency Medicine at Baystate Medical Center in Springfield.

“The relationships they established at Baystate Medical Center during their training carry over as they continue to work with our colleagues there, consulting on complex cases and providing patients with access to all the resources and expertise of our area’s major trauma center,” said Dr. Jacques Blanchet, medical director of Emergency Services at Baystate Franklin.

A graduate of Amherst College, Brahmavar completed his medical training at Tufts University School of Medicine before returning to the Pioneer Valley for his residency at Baystate.

Carson completed her undergraduate studies at California State University at Long Beach, her medical training at the Universidad Autonoma de Guadalajara in Mexico, and the Fifth Pathway Program at St. Vincent’s Medical Center in Bridgeport, Conn., before going on to specialize in Emergency Medicine at Baystate Medical Center.

Fitch Appointed Interim President at Baystate Franklin

GREENFIELD — Carl Fitch Sr., a health care executive with 35 years of experience, recently began serving as interim president of Baystate Franklin Medical Center.

Fitch served as president and CEO for a number of hospitals, both large and small, before making his career shift to interim work. His most recent permanent leadership position was president and CEO of Desert Springs Hospital Medical Center in Las Vegas, where he helped achieve substantial progress through financial and operational improvements.

At Baystate Franklin, Fitch will be leading the day-to-day operations while Baystate Health completes its search for a permanent president, a process expected to be completed by mid-winter. Fitch will work directly with the hospital’s leadership team and medical staff to focus on continuing development of clinical programs, facility development, process improvement initiatives, and addressing the financial challenges that come with declining reimbursement for care delivery.

“I am pleased to welcome Carl to our community and health system,” said Trish Hannon, senior vice president of Health Care Operations for Baystate Health, who has been serving as interim president at Franklin since May. “We have a challenging year ahead, and I look forward to working with him and the hospital’s executive team to lay the foundation for future growth.”

Junnila Joins Practice at Baystate Ob/Gyn Group

SPRINGFIELD — Dr. Debra Junnila has joined the Baystate Ob/Gyn Group. Her approach to medicine and skills, particularly in laparoscopic surgery, is expected to complement the comprehensive services already offered by the practice.

“In this Internet age, I feel my role as a clinician is not just to educate women, but to help them sift through the abundance of available information in order for women make informed decisions about their health,” Junnila said. “I believe active participation is an important part of optimizing the relationship between a patient and her physician. I also appreciate these relationships and feel I benefit from them as I strive to become a better physician.”

Junnila earned her medical degree from the University of Washington. She completed her residence in Obstetrics and Gynecology at Baystate Medical Center, where she earned awards for her laparoscopic surgical skills, as well as mentoring and inspiring resident physicians.

Edelberg-Cardillo Tapped to Head Keystone Commons

LUDLOW — Beth Edelberg-Cardillo has been named executive director of Keystone Commons, a new, 90-unit, independent and assisted living community being developed at 460 West St. in Ludlow.

Scheduled to open in early 2008, Keystone Commons will feature three distinct senior living ‘neighborhoods’: independent living, assisted living, and a secure memory care wing. Each neighborhood will be designed specifically for the lifestyle of its residents and will feature its own common areas and dining facilities.

Since 2005, Edelberg-Cardillo has been marketing director for Keystone Woods in Springfield, Keystone Commons’ sister community.

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