The 8th Interdisciplinary and Interfaith Conference About Palliative and End of Life Care        November 30, 2017

Thomas V. Caprio, MD,MPH, MS, CMD, HMDC, FACP, AGSF
Associate Professor of Medicine, University of Rochester

White Plains Hospital

Christopher P. Comfort, MD
Medical Director, Calvary Hospital

Mary L. Dunne, MD
Supportive Care and Palliative Medicine, Vassar Brothers Medical Center

Colleen Fleming-Damon, PhDc, APRN-BC, ACHPN-BC
 Director of Education and Training, MJHS Institute for Innovation in Palliative Care

Susan Gerbino PhD, LCSW
Clinical Professor and Director, Zelda Foster Studies Program in Palliative and End of Life Care, New York University Silver School of Social Work

Tony Lewis
CEO at Cobble Hill Health Center 

Frances T McCarthy, RN
Nurse Coordinator, Neonatal Comfort Care Program

Kenneth Meeker, LMSW
Social Worker, Palliative Care Service, Montefiore Medical Center

Elvira Parravicini, MD
Director, Neonatal Comfort Care Program New York-Presbyterian Columbia University Medical Center

Solimar Santiago, SW
Social Worker, Neonatal Comfort Care Program 

Deidre Sekulic, LCSW
Assistant Director of Social Work, Montefiore Medical Center

Ann Wyatt
Manager Palliative and Residential Care, Caring Kind, The Heart of Alzheimers Caregiving

Thomas Caprio, MD, MPH, MS, CMD, HMDC, FACP, AGSF is an Associate Professor of Medicine/Geriatrics, Dentistry, Clinical Nursing, and Public Health Sciences at the University of Rochester (UR) Medical Center in Rochester, New York.  He is the Chief Medical Officer of UR Medicine Home Care and the Medical Director for the Visiting Nurse Hospice & Palliative Care.  He serves as director of the geriatric medicine fellowship training program, director of the UR geriatric assessment clinic, and director of the Finger Lakes Geriatric Education Center.  He oversees the federally-funded Geriatric Workforce Enhancement Program which provides education and training related to geriatrics, palliative care, and dementia care for health care professionals, rural primary care providers, academic faculty, and family caregivers.  Dr. Caprio received his undergraduate degree from Nazareth College of Rochester, his MD from the State University of New York at Buffalo, his MPH from the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry, and his MS in Health Professions Education from the University of Rochester Warner Graduate School of Education.  He is a fellow of the American College of Physicians and a fellow of the American Geriatrics Society.
Eugene Cauvin, DNP, FNP-BC, ACHPN, CPE started his nursing career in 2001. In 2008, Dr. Cauvin specialized in pain medicine and palliative care as a nurse practitioner fellow under the tutelage of Dr. Russell Portenoy, MD, then Chief Medical Officer of the Department of Pain Medicine & Palliative Care at Beth Israel Medical Center in New York City. Previously, Dr. Cauvin served as medical faculty and as a team member of the Palliative Care Team at New York University's Langone Medical Center. Now a specialist at White Plains Hospital, he provides expert treatment of pain and other symptom management, co-facilitating family team meetings, and informing and guiding difficult and complex treatment regimens. He is board certified in Hospice and Palliative Care (ACHPN), Family Health and as an Educator in Pain Medicine.
Christopher Comfort, MD joined Calvary Hospital in 1999. As Medical Director, he oversees all patient care at the 200-bed Bronx Campus, the 25 bed Brooklyn Satellite, the 10 bed Dawn Greene Hospice, and Calvary Hospice patients cared for in the home setting. Dr Comfort is Board Certified in Internal Medicine and Geriatrics. In 1985, Dr Comfort was the recipient of the Leo Davidoff Award for Teaching Excellence. He is active in the Albert Einstein College of Medicine Mentorship Program. He has served as a consultant to major insurance companies and has advised numerous developing palliative care programs. Dr Comfort is a frequent speaker at programs for community groups, medical panels and in many other areas of the medical profession.
Colleen Fleming-Damon, PhDc, APRN-BC, ACHPN, F.T. is Director of Education and Training at the MJHS Institute for Innovation in Palliative Care, providing leadership for the interdisciplinary training programs in medicine, nursing, pharmacy, social work and complementary therapies, as well as providing education and training for MJHS Hospice and Palliative Care staff. She received her BSN from the State University of New York at New Paltz, an MSN from Hunter College, and is a PhD candidate at Adelphi University. Ms. Fleming-Damon is ANCC Board Certified as an Adult Nurse Practitioner, and NBCHPN Board Certified in Palliative Care. She holds a Post-Masters Certificate in Thanatology, and received designation of Fellow in Thanatology by the Association of Death Educators and Counselors (ADEC). Ms. Fleming-Damon is an Adjunct Professor /Clinical Instructor in Palliative Care for Graduate NP Students at Mount Saint Mary College, and an Adjunct Professor at Adelphi University for the RN to BSN Program. She has more than 15 years of teaching experience. She was a founding member of the Vassar Brothers Medical Center Palliative Care Program, and practiced as a palliative nurse practitioner there for 12 years. She has over 30 years’ experience in the field of hospice and palliative care.

Dr. Susan Gerbino, Clinical Professor, NYU Silver School of Social Work, directs the Zelda Foster Studies Program in Palliative and End-of-Life Care  (PELC), which includes training and mentoring across the career trajectory from MSW student to advanced PELC professional.  She has worked in PELC for forty years and has a private practice working with people with life-limiting illnesses and the bereaved. She received the 2014 Career Achievement Award from the Project on Death in America and the Social Work Hospice and Palliative Care Network, the 2014 Distinguished Teaching Award from the NYU Silver School of Social Work and the 2015 Quality of Life Award from the American Cancer Society and the Association of Oncology Social Work. 
Fran McCarthy has been a nurse for over 30 years.  She was a bedside NICU nurse for 28 years, manager of the NICU and Pediatrics at St. Vincent’s Medical Center in Manhattan for 2 years and is currently the Clinical Coordinator of the Neonatal Comfort Care Program at New York Presbyterian Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital, working under the direction of Dr. Elvira Parravicini.  Fran received her BSN from Fairleigh Dickinson University and her Master of Science as a Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner from Columbia University in 1998. She has taught about bereavement care and support to new staff in the NICU core course and has lectured extensively about Neonatal Comfort Care nationally and abroad.  In her current role, Fran is responsible for attending prenatal consults, coordinating interdisciplinary team support, being present at deliveries, educating and assisting staff, providing follow-up support to families and research.  Fran completed the RTS Perinatal Bereavement training as well as RTS Coordinator training.  She is certified in Perinatal Loss Care.

Bio coming soon

Ken Meeker, LMSW, has been a Palliative Care Social Worker at Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx, NY, since 2012.  In addition to providing psychosocial support to patients and families affected by chronic and life-limiting illnesses, Ken presents a series of didactics as part of the Montefiore Palliative Care Physician Fellowship Program.  Ken also conducts continuing education presentations on palliative care topics at Fordham University.  Ken is a member of SWHPN, AAHPM, ADEC, and NASW.
Dr. Elvira Parravicini was the founder and is currently the medical director of the Neonatal Comfort Care program at Columbia University Medical Center. This is a multidisciplinary team, supporting infants with life-limiting or complex medical conditions and potential adverse prognosis. In 1993 she was appointed Medical Director of a project of AVSI (an Italian NGO) supported by the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs at the St. Kizito Clinic in Lagos, Nigeria. In 1994 she moved to the United States, where she completed her Pediatric residency at New York University in 1997 and her Neonatal fellowship at Columbia University in 2001. Since, she has been working as attending neonatologist at New York Presbyterian Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital and in 2016 became Associate Professor of Pediatrics at Columbia University. Dr. Parravicini has worked for many years on kidney development with focus on urine NGAL (Neutrophil Gelatinase Associated Lipocalin) as an early biomarker of acute renal failure and sepsis in very low birth weight infants. 
Solimar Santiago-Warner is an LCSW and the social worker for the Neonatal Comfort Care Program. Mrs. Santiago-Warner graduated from Connecticut College with a degree in Human Development. She received her MSW from Boston College with a concentration in Children Youth and Families. She also completed a post graduate certificate program in Palliative and End of Life- Care at NYU. Mrs. Santiago-Warner is also a certified counselor in perinatal loss. Mrs. Santiago-Warner first began her social work career working with developmentally delayed and medically fragile adults. She then went on to work in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit at Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital. After working five years in the PICU, she decided to take a break and went on to work with undocumented youth providing mental health services and then an elementary school providing play therapy to children. Mrs. Santiago- Warner returned back to the children’s hospital as the neonatal comfort care social worker. In her role she helps families navigate through the journey of dealing and coping with the life limiting diagnosis of their baby. She does this by providing counseling, psycho-education, case management and advocacy.
Deirdre Sekulic has worked as a social worker for almost twenty years. Deirdre has been employed with Montefiore Health System for the past ten years, managing Montefiore’s Housing at Risk Program and Respite Program. Deirdre’s background is in medical and oncology social work and she also supervisees the Montefiore oncology and palliative care social workers. Deirdre has presented on the links between chronic illnesses and housing instability at numerous national conferences. Deirdre also is a founding member of The Coalition for Housing and Health that affects policy change for the medically homeless. In her role with the Housing at Risk program and the Respite Program, Deirdre and her team are working on linking unstably housed patients with medical issues to housing and other community interventions. Deirdre holds a Masters in Social Work from the Silberman School of Social Work and a Bachelor of Sociology from the Dublin Institute of Technology, College of Social Sciences.
Ann Wyatt, MSW is currently the Manager for Palliative and Residential Care at Caringkind (formerly the Alzheimer’s Association, NYC Chapter), working to promote innovative, comprehensive palliative care programs for people with advanced dementia. Earlier, she helped to develop Independence Care System, a managed long term care plan for younger people with disabilities, one of the first in the country. Prior to that, she was Associate Director of the Office of Long Term Care, New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation (where among other things she helped to oversee OBRA implementation for HHC’s nearly 3,000 skilled nursing beds). Earlier, as the initial Planning Director for the Village Nursing Home AIDS Project, she helped develop the first AIDS adult day health program in the country.  She is currently a founding Board member of Ibasho (an organization which works internationally to help create socially integrated, sustainable aging communities), of Music and Memory, Inc. (the iPod project), and of Sprat Artistic ensemble. She is also a Board member of CIAD (Coalition for the Institutionalized Aged and Disabled) and of Isabella Geriatric Center. Ms. Wyatt has been on the Adjunct Faculty in the Milano Graduate School of the New School. Her publications include three book chapters (in AIDS and Long Term Care, HIV/AIDS and the Older Adult, and Managing the Long-Term Care Facility), and articles in Quality Review Bulletin; Long-Term Living; American Rehabilitation; Health and Social Work; and, Pride Institute Journal. 

Mary L. Dunne, MD, is the Director of Supportive Care Medicine for Health-Quest, a four hospital health care system based in Poughkeepsie, NY. She is board-certified in Emergency Medicine and Hospice and Palliative Medicine.