ASTS Advanced Transplant Provider Bio Corner  

Summer 2020

Ashley_Seawright

Name: Ashley Heath Seawright, DNP, ACNP-BC
Title: Instructor, Department of Surgery;
Executive Director of Advanced Practice Providers
Institution: University of Mississippi Medical Center
Years in current position: 13 years

How many faculty and ATP colleagues are on your team?:

3 Transplant Nephrologist
4 Transplant Surgeons
1 Hepatologist with 2 starting this month
3 Abdominal transplant APPs

Patient population:

Abdominal Transplant (Kidney, Pancreas, Liver) and HPB Surgery 

Brief Job description:

Oh boy… one of my nephrologist last week called me the Swiss army knife which made me laugh but also made me happy. I cover whatever needs to be covered.  I have done every aspect of transplant including OR (although my surgeons are likely glad no longer!). I have post-transplant clinics for all organs listed above 5 days a week to include one out-reach clinic currently. I do cover inpatient services as needed. I also work on programmatic needs as the clinical director. 

How has being an ATP impacted your institution? 

I am the longest active member of our transplant team… Not to be confused with oldest! I have seen so many programmatic changes over the past 13 years I should write a book. I have been an active participant in the rebirth of our kidney program taking a center from doing only 10 a year to almost 200 in addition to starting pancreas and liver programs. I also started our first QAPI programs while I was working on my doctorate at Hopkins under the direction of my medical and surgical leaders.

One of the beauties though is being able to know the institution interworking’s well enough to be able to help get things done for our program. I hope my organization would say that I have shared the beauty of Transplant teamwork across the organization. I think that is one of our strengths.

How has being a member of ASTS impacted your practice?

I have such a great story about ASTS! I was a stary-eyed new NP that got permission to go to WTC in Toronto in 2008. I was totally a deer in headlights overwhelmed by all the smart people and yet facinated by the comrodary. I met this energetic and fiesty girl from Maine named Deb Hoch at a social hour with the executive board. One room was for fellows and students and the other was for NPs and PAs.  The purpose of this gathering was to inspire NPs and PAs within the field of transplant. Dr. Klintmalm and Dr. Abecassis talked to us for hours about my research interest and goals. At that time, I had applied to the first DNP program at Hopkins and was interested in living donation. These three people did not know me at all but were supportive and took the time to give advance and career direction. During this evening, Deb convinced them to start a committee for us. I was not even a member of ASTS and according to the current bylaws couldn’t be. They changed the bylaws and allowed me to join.  The rest was history!

ASTS has given me the opportunity to meet others in my field, share ideas, and replicate best practices either via committees or like minded interests. I have been able to be the geeky transplant person and find a home to do that.

What’s the most interesting thing about you? 

This is hard. How far back in years can I go?? I am actually shy but none of my transplant friends believe that. I love to travel with my wonderful husband and find new places to explore. I love British history and my husband says I could teach for Oxford University. Maybe that will be my next job. I also enjoy watching basketball (go Celtics!). I have two kids, Heath (15) and Sarah Bradford (17) who are both extremely athletic unlike myself.

What’s the most impactful thing to you about being an ATP?

I have the ability to impact so many in a resource deprived state and give them a new chance at life. In addition, I have always loved working with the residents and students and teaching them the beauty of transplant. I am very blessed to be one small part of a wonderful team at UMMC.

Spring 2020

Sarumi

Name: Heidi Sarumi, MMS, PA-C
Title: Senior Physician Assistant 
Institution: University of Minnesota Medical Center
Director of Transplant: William Payne, MD
Years in current position: 10 years

How many faculty and ATP colleagues are on your team?:

7 Transplant Surgeons
6 Adult Inpatient ATPs
1 Outpatient ATP
1 Pediatric ATP

Patient population:

Adult pancreas, liver, kidney and total pancreatectomy and autologous islet cell transplant.

Brief Job description:

I work with a multi-disciplinary team responsible for the management of the inpatient transplant surgery service which mainly includes post-operative care and medical admissions related to transplantation. This includes admissions, discharges, medical management and collaborating with consulting teams. We are also a resource for the education of residents and new fellows. 

How has being an ATP impacted your institution? 

We have an amazing group of ATPs that have worked at our institution for greater than 10 years. This group has impacted our institution greatly by having consistent and experienced care providers available to our patients despite the demanding clinical and operating room schedules of our surgeons.

I have also championed quality control projects leading to changes in the immunosuppression protocol at our institution.

How has being a member of ASTS impacted your practice?

Being a newer member to ASTS, I was very impressed after attending the winter symposium this year. The information presented was clinically applicable and beneficial to my practice. I was honored to be chosen for the ATP award for 2020 especially after meeting so many impressive ATPs that are involved with ASTS. It was beneficial to network with this group to learn about how they function at different institutions. I look forward to working more with this group in the future.

What’s the most interesting thing about you? 

Typically the most interesting thing about me is asking about my most recent trip! My family and I love to immerse ourselves in different cultures by travel. My favorite place I have been in the last year is Japan.

What’s the most impactful thing to you about being an ATP?

The most impactful thing about being an ATP will always be caring for our patients and making a difference in their care. It is also gratifying to be able to work at an academic institution where I am constantly learning from our surgeons, consulting providers and my colleagues while being encouraged to grow in my career.

Fall 2019/Winter 2020

Humberto_Monge

Name: Humberto Monge, PA-C, MPAS
Title: Senior Physician Assistant, Adult & Pediatric Solid Organ Transplant Program 
Institution: Stanford University
Director of Transplant: Carlos Esquivel, MD, PhD
Years in current position: 25 years

How many faculty and ATP colleagues are on your team?:

7 Transplant Surgeons
5 Surgical ATPs 

Patient population:

Adult and pediatric patients

Brief Job description:

  • Assists in the management of pediatric and adult small bowel, liver transplant, and general surgery patients in the ICU, ward, and outpatient setting
  • Precepts and mentors junior ATPs
  • Lectures and precepts PA students
  • First and second assists in the OR

How has being an ATP impacted your institution? 

In 1995, I was the first in-hospital APP hired and credentialed at both Stanford Hospital and Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford, and it was quite a challenge getting approval from the medical board to be credentialed. In less than 25 years, we now have over 500 APPs working at Stanford Hospital, Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital, and their respective satellite clinics throughout the Bay Area, along with the Palo Alto VA. Also, we have APPs in administrative positions and we have an Interdisciplinary Practice Committee of the Medical Board that is specifically for reviewing, hiring, and approving practice guidelines for APPs, along with an APP Council that promotes APP advancement. 

How has being a member of ASTS impacted your practice?

With new and updated advances in surgical technique, immunosupression, and medical management that have been presented in the meetings have improved  the way we practice.

Also, ASTS has made great strides in embracing and and including ATPs and recognizing ATPs for their achievements. I was honored in being the inaugural recipient of the ASTS Advanced Transplant Provider Award in 2011. 

What’s the most interesting thing about you? 

I am proud to say that I served in the Navy for 27 years. I enlisted as a sailor, rose through the ranks as a Hospital Corpsman to Senior Chief, and became a Mustang, which means that I was an enlisted sailor that became an officer and retired as a Lieutenant Commander. I am a Persian Gulf and Iraq War veteran and a ShellBack, which means I crossed the equator onboard the aircraft carrier USS Midway (now a floating museum in San Diego) and on the supply ship USS Acadia.

What’s the most impactful thing to you about being an ATP?

  • I provide not just bedside care to critically ill patients, but I take the time to know them and their families. This allows me to know them better and helps me have a better bedside manner.
  • The surgeons trust me and ask my advice and assistance on difficult cases.
  • We, the surgeons, fellows, and ATPs work as a team.

Summer 2019

thumbnail (14)Name: Eliana Z. Agudelo, PA-C
Title: Senior PA, Division of Liver Transplant
Institution: University of California, San Francisco
Years in current position: I have worked in Transplant Hepatology and Liver Transplant at UCSF for 15 years. I am currently a post liver transplant provider and have been in this role for 11 years. 

How many faculty and ATP colleagues are on your team?:

In Liver Transplant we work with nine surgeons and collaborate with eight transplant hepatologists. There are currently thirteen ATPs in the Division of Liver Transplant (pediatric, inpatient, outpatient, and pre LT). This number does not include kidney, pancreas, and heart/lung ATPs. There are about 30 ATPs working at UCSF Transplant. 

Patient population:

Post liver transplant patients, including LDLT and SLK patients.

Brief Job description:

I started my career in liver transplant in 2007. As an Outpatient Liver Transplant PA, I am responsible for the care of liver transplant patients starting at the time of discharge. The liver transplant ATPs provide the first line care of the patient by managing medical issues, coordinating care with referring providers, interacting with community providers, and consulting with collaborating physicians as needed. We provide long-term follow-up care of the post-transplant patients, which includes diagnosis, treatment, and management of post liver transplant complications, immunosuppressive management, ongoing clinical assessment, preventive care, and patient education. As a post liver transplant ATP, I also participate in outreach clinics, which allows for bringing care and education to locations that are hours away from the medical center. My position allows me to be a resource to other health care team members and to the community regarding the special concerns of liver transplant patients and their families. As a requirement for my position, I participate in the development of policies, procedures, and protocols and participate in continual quality improvement.   

It is gratifying to be part of an extraordinary interdisciplinary team and an honor to develop patient relationships that have spanned for over a decade now. 

How long have you been a member of ASTS?

10 years. I became a member when Dr. Roberts was ASTS President. 

How has the ASTS impacted your practice?

As a member of ASTS, I started attending meetings and later became a member of the ATP committee. This participation has brought forth opportunities for leadership development and educational growth. ASTS has impacted my clinical practice by providing ongoing opportunities to learn. The modules and meetings present clinically relevant information that impacts my clinical practice. Through involvement in ASTS, I have participated in expanding ATP recognition and awareness in the transplant community. I have been fortunate to work with an exceptional committee of ATPs in developing the ATP Certificate Program and job description, expanding membership, and planning our Winter Symposium sessions. 

In the next 5 years, what kinds of opportunities for ATPs would you like to see at your institution?

I hope to see ongoing programs and opportunities at the institutional and national level that continue to promote the growth of the ATP professional development. The expansion of leadership, educational, and clinical roles for ATPs is needed to promote professional satisfaction and retention, and therefore allow for exceptional patient care and contribute to the success of the transplant center. My hope is that in the next five years, both UCSF and ASTS will continue to increase opportunities for ATP growth and advancement.

Spring 2019

professional pic Hoy_AName: Haley Hoy PhD, NP
Title: Nurse Practitioner
Institution: Vanderbilt Medical Center/ University of Alabama Huntsville
Years in current position: 17 years

How many faculty and ATP colleagues are on your team?:

On the lung transplant team, we have four ATPs. In the transplant center as a whole, we have over fifty faculty and twenty-two ATPs.

Patient population:

Lung transplantation

Brief Job description:

I have worked as a nurse practitioner for twenty-two years, the last seventeen of which have been in lung transplantation. For the first six years, I worked as an inpatient and outpatient nurse practitioner in both the pre-transplant and post-transplant arenas. The job description included the evaluation of new candidates for lung transplantation, inpatient rounds, outpatient urgent and annual clinic visits as well research and patient/staff education. As the program has grown, these tasks have been divided among multiple ATPs and additional team members. The following ten years I ran an NP-led waitlist clinic for lung transplant patients who were listed, and now I primarily work as a nurse practitioner in transplant outreach clinics in an effort to bring tertiary care services to underserved populations. I have been fortunate throughout my work in transplantation to work with an interdisciplinary team that functions with mutual respect and excellent communication.

How long have you been a member of ASTS?

I have been a member of ASTS for seven years.

How has the ASTS impacted your practice?

ASTS membership has enhanced my practice in many ways. I have been exposed to practitioners functioning as ATPs in different transplant organ groups, bringing to my conscious awareness the commonalities and differences of our individual successes and struggles.  The ATP educational opportunities within ASTS, both module-based and live conferences, have provided clinically relevant information that I have then brought back to my center for implementation into practice. Finally, ASTS has afforded me multiple opportunities for professional growth. I participated in the development of the ATP certificate program, had to opportunity to chair a very active ATP committee, and have had the pleasure of working with a dynamic committee that has significantly increased ATP involvement in ASTS.

In the next 5 years, what kinds of opportunities for ATPs would you like to see at your institution? Within ASTS?

Both at my institution and within ASTS I would like to see further opportunities for professional development and research grant opportunities for ATPs.