Advisory Council

Learn more about the members of the Patients Improving Research in Diagnosis (PAIRED) Advisory Council.
Robert El-Kareh

Robert El-Kareh, MD, MPH

Robert El-Kareh, MD, MPH, is a board-certified internal medicine physician who specializes in caring for hospitalized patients. As a hospitalist, Dr. El- Kareh is assigned to patients at the time of admission and provides care only during their hospital stay. He does not see patients at outpatient clinics and is not available for appointments. Upon a patient’s discharge, Dr. El-Kareh communicates with their regular physician to ensure quality care.

Wendy Hayum-Gross

Wendy Hayum-Gross, LCPC NCC, MSEd

Wendy Hayum-Gross, LCPC NCC, is a licensed clinical professional counselor. She received her undergraduate degree from Western Illinois University and her MSEd in counseling from Northern Illinois University. Her clinical training included both the NIU Counseling and Development Center and a management role at the NIU Career Planning and Placement Offices. Ms. Hayum-Gross began her career working in an employee assistance program (EAP) in Winfield where she counseled couples, individuals, and families and managed educational outreach programs for companies and employees.

Carole Hemmelgarn

Carole Hemmelgarn, MS

Carole Hemmelgarn has served as a Quality, Safety and Leadership faculty member for the last 6 years and has worked in health care for over 30 years. She is a member of multiple associations including: Patient and Family Engagement committee for Solutions for Patient Safety; Patient and Family Advisory Council for Quality and Safety at MedStar Health; Patient Safety Committee and Target Zero at Children’s Hospital Colorado; Board of Director Collaborative for Accountability and Improvements. She is an active faculty member for Academy for Emerging Leaders in Patient Safety: The Telluride Experience.

Kerm Henriksen

Kerm Henriksen, PhD

Kerm Henriksen is an experimental psychologist by academic training and currently serves as a Senior Advisor, Human Factors and Patient Safety, with the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). Starting in 2001, Dr. Henriksen directed the Agency’s Patient Safety Research Coordinating Center which served as the central coordinating hub and repository for a large and diverse portfolio of funded patient safety grants.

C. Daniel Mullins

C. Daniel Mullins, PhD

C. Daniel Mullins, PhD, is a Professor and Chair of the Pharmaceutical Health Services Research Department at the University of Maryland School of Pharmacy. He directs the University of Maryland PATient-centered Involvement in Evaluating effectiveNess of TreatmentS (PATIENTS) Program, which received a University of Maryland Baltimore Champion of Excellence Award.

Cal Sheridan

Cal Sheridan

Cal Sheridan has become a well-known figurehead who experienced a patient safety event as a newborn. He has been featured in TeamSTEPPS, Chasing Zero, “Prevent This” and other patient safety trainings in an effort to create a safer healthcare system and most recently offered the keynote presentation titled ”#ItsWhatsInYou, at the annual Maryland Patient Safety Center Conference.

Maria L. Ugarte-Ramos

Maria L. Ugarte-Ramos, MA

Maria L. Ugarte-Ramos, M.A. is a social worker and founder of the FAMA Bilingual Center for Family Caregivers (FAMA Center), an online non-profit organization dedicated to improving and maintaining the health of family caregivers through information and resources. She earned a Master of Arts Degree in Social Service Administration and Certification in Health Administration and Policy from the University of Chicago.

Beth Daley Ullem

Beth Daley Ullem, MBA

Beth Daley Ullem is a nationally-recognized governance expert and patient advocate for safety and quality in health care. Beth works with hospital leadership teams, boards and healthcare industry leaders to develop programs that improve the quality of patient care and better enable Boards to provide oversight of quality and safety. As a patient advocate, she works to advance patient-centric care and make care outcomes transparent and accessible to consumers.

John Westfall

John Westfall, MD, MPH

John Westfall, MD, MPH, has devoted his career to improving health care in underserved rural and urban communities. He received his medical degree and MPH from the University of Kansas, and completed his family medicine residency at Rose Family Medicine in Denver. As the founder and director of the High Plains Research Network, he has developed strong links with community physicians, hospital administrators, and community members throughout rural and frontier eastern Colorado.

Peggy Zuckerman

Peggy Zuckerman

After months of treatment of non-existent stomach ulcer, I was diagnosed with Stage IV kidney cancer. My recovery propelled to help similar patients. I became an “expert patient,” translating research and how to seek their options. Being a teacher and interested in literacy prepared me to reach many patients. Since many had been misdiagnosed, I focused on diagnostic errors and research findings. Gratified that SIDM was teaching doctors how to avoid such errors, I have advocated for patients to play an active role in diagnosis.

Meet the Patient Partners

Learn more about the group of patient advocates driving our efforts to engage patients in research to improve diagnosis.

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