Subject Matter Experts

One of the most critical aspects of successful functioning of this regional healthcare coalition system in emergency response is trusting relationships; the steady growth in breadth and depth of these coalition relationships has been key to the success of the GA model. Factors such as developing caches of medical and non-medical supplies, as well as other healthcare and non-healthcare resources are also important as is ready access to highly specialized clinicians and medical facilities with nationally and internationally recognized expertise. These are coordinated on a daily basis, not just in emergencies.

Organizational Subject Matter Experts

The Department of Emergency Medicine at the Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University is comprised of Adult and Pediatric Emergency facilities and a Level-1 Trauma Center. AUMC is also the regional coordinating center for region G. The department also holds the Center of Operational Medicine (COM), which focuses on providing emergency medical care in prehospital, austere, and unconventional environments through education, training, research, and operational support. Augusta University Medical Center also supports other hospitals in rural Georgia that are limited in their ability to care for emergency critical conditions through their Tele-Critical Care Program. 

Augusta Subject Matter Experts

  • Amy Shultz, MBA, Department Administrator 
  • Ann Marie Kuchinski, PhD, Emergency Medicine  
  • Carol Lee Pogue, BA, Administrative Service Director  
  • Houlton Boomer 
  • Joe Webber, MFR, CEPaR Director 
  • John Ryan, CEPaR Coordinator  
  • Lindsey P. Anthony, MPA, Chief of Disaster and Hospital Emergency Management 
  • Matt Lyon, MD, Emergency Medicine, & Pediatric Emergency Medicine, Telemedicine Director, Executive Director of Ultrasound Education, Vice Chairman for Academic Programs & Research for Emergency Medicine,Tele-Critical Care Initiative Lead  
  • Natalie Lane, MD, Emergency Medicine, & Pediatric Emergency Medicine, Medical Director & Service Chief for the Children’s Hospital of Georgia Emergency Department 
  • Phillip Coule, MD, Emergency Medicine, EVP Health Affairs & CMO AUMC, Associate Dean for Clinical Affairs, Chief Patient Safety Officer, Co-Directo of the Center for Operational Medicine 
  • Robert W. Gibson, PhD, Emergency Medicine and Hospitalist Services

The Department of Emergency Medicine at Emory University School of Medicine is the primary awardee of the ASPR RDHRS program. The Department of Emergency Medicine is comprised of five patient care centers: Emory University Hospital-Clifton (EUH), Emory University Hospital-Midtown (EUHM), Emory Johns Creek Hospital (EJCH), the Atlanta VA Medical Center and Grady Memorial Hospital. Grady is Atlanta's Level-1 trauma center and regional coordinating hospital for region D. The department also is home to the sections of prehospital and disaster management, emergency ultrasound, medical toxicology, observation medicine and various training programs. Through focus on the acute care continuum and innovative technology, the department is a leader in tele-EMS and tele-observation medicine.  

Emory Subject Matter Experts

  • Alexander Isakov, MD, MPH – Emergency Medicine, Director of Prehospital and Disaster Medicine, Executive Director for Office of Critical Event Preparedness and Response (CEPAR) 
  • Angela Adams, MPH AEMT, Planning and Exercise Manager CEPAR 
  • Brookes Moore, MD, Emergency Medicine, Associate Medical Director Grady Memorial Hospital  
  • Colleen Kraft, MD, Pathology & Infectious Disease, Associate Chief Medical Officer Emory Hospital 
  • Dan Wu, MD, Emergency Medicine, Chief of Grady in Emergency Medicine & Chief Medical Information Officer 
  • Gavin Harris, MD, Critical Care, Pulmonary Allergy, & Infectious Disease 
  • Greg Esper, MD MBA, Neurology, Vice Chair of Clinical Affairs, Associate Chief Medica Officer Emory Healthcare 
  • Keith Wages, Emergency Medical Services, Public Health, Emergency Management Lead  
  • Michael Carr, MD, Emergency Medicine, Tele-Paramedicine/EMS Initiative Lead 
  • Michael Ross, MD, Emergency Medicine, Chief of Service in Observation Medicine, Medical Director of Chest Pain Center Emory Hospital, Tele-Observation/CDU medicine Initiative Lead 
  • Sam Shartar, MSN, RN, CEN, FAAN, NRP, PCEM, Director of Operations & Senior Administrator CEPAR 
  • Senem Hinson, MPH, Emergency Medicine and Emergency Department Business Operations Lead  
  • Sharon Vanairsdale, DNP, APRN, ACNS-BC, NP-C, CEN, FAEN, FAAN, Program Director of Serious Communicable Diseases Unit at Emory Hospital 
  • Ziad Kazzi, MD, RITN Executive Committee Member, Emergency Medicine physician, Medical Toxicologist, Member of NCRP, Associate Medical Director Georgia Poison Center, Associate Medical Director SRDRS

Through the Division of Health Protection, GaDPH has a successful collaboration of Healthcare Coalitions through their Healthcare Preparedness Program. The current membership list comprises 3,300 organizations across the 14 GA HCCs including:  
  • Acute Care Hospitals (Core HCC Member)
  • Behavioral health services and organizations
  • Community Emergency Response Team and Medical Reserve Corps
  • Dialysis centers and regional Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS)-funded end-stage renal disease networks
  • Emergency management agencies (Core HCC Member)
  • EMS (including inter-facility and other non-EMS patient transport systems; Core HCC Member)
  • Federal facilities (e.g., U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Centers, Indian Health Service facilities, military treatment facilities)
  • Home health agencies (including home and community-based services)
  • Infrastructure companies (e.g., utility and communication companies)
  • Jurisdictional partners, including cities, counties, and tribes
  • Local chapters of health care professional organizations (e.g., medical society, professional society, hospital association)
  • Local public safety agencies (e.g., law enforcement and fire services)
  • Medical and device manufacturers and distributors
  • Non-governmental organizations (e.g., American Red Cross, voluntary organizations active in disaster, amateur radio operators, etc.)
  • Other (e.g., assisted living, childcare services, dental clinics, hospice, social work services, etc.)
  • Outpatient health care delivery (e.g., ambulatory care, clinics, community and tribal health centers, Federally Qualified Health Centers, urgent care centers, free standing emergency rooms, stand-alone surgery centers)
  • Primary care providers, including pediatric and women’s health care providers
  • Public health agencies (Core HCC Member)
  • Schools and universities, including academic medical centers
  • Skilled nursing, nursing, and long-term care facilities
  • Specialty patient referral centers (e.g., pediatric, burn, trauma, and psychiatric centers)
  • Support service providers (e.g., clinical laboratories, pharmacies, radiology, blood banks, poison control centers)

GaDPH Subject Matter Experts

  • Kelly Nadeau, RN, MN, EMHP – Georgia DPH- Healthcare Preparedness Program Director 
  • Leah Hoffacker, MPS, EMHP - Public Health Emergency Preparedness Program Director
  • Sean Jenkins, Public Health Informatician, CDC Foundation  

The Georgia Poison Center (GPC) is a 24-hour poison emergency treatment information service, providing assistance and expertise in the medical diagnosis and management of human and animal poisonings. The Center provides free, timely advice and information to parents, child care providers, pharmacists, nurses, and doctors and plays a significant role in reducing the cost of treatment and the severity of poisonings where time is of the essence.

The Center is also a training site for healthcare professionals and serves the state by coordinating outreach and education programs to increase awareness of poison prevention and first-aid. The GPC is housed at the Grady Health System and operates under the supervision of the Department of Pediatrics of Emory University School of Medicine. The Center is staffed with a dedicated group of highly trained professionals including physicians, toxicologists, registered nurses, registered pharmacists, health educators and computer specialists.

Designated as the official State poison center, GPC is the only center in Georgia and is certified and accredited as a Regional Poison Center by the American Association of Poison Control Centers (AAPCC). The AAPCC is the governing body and runs the centralized database for poison centers nationwide. The AAPCC compiles toxic exposure data in cooperation with poison centers and develops the national standards and certification process that ensure the quality of poison emergency services. UGA Individual Subject Matter Experts

GPC Subject Matter Experts

  • Ziad Kazzi, MD, RITN Executive Committee Member, Emergency Medicine physician, Medical Toxicologist, Member of NCRP, Associate Medical Director Georgia Poison Center, Associate Medical Director SRDRS

Grady Health System plays a key role in Region D as the regional coordinating hospital and level-1 trauma hospital for metro Atlanta. Oversight of the state-wide Georgia Coordinating Center (GCC) has been recently delegated to Grady from the Georgia Department of Public Health. The GCC provides direct ground support for EMS personnel transporting patients by providing increased situational awareness for EMS crews regarding current hospital capacity and diversion/saturation status. EMS personnel can make a better-informed decision regarding the transport of the patient based on patient condition, ambulance location and EMS agency destination guidelines.

Grady Health System Subject Matter Experts

  • Brookes Moore, MD, Emergency Medicine, Associate Medical Director Grady Memorial Hospital
  • Lori Wood, MBA, MSEM, EMHP, Vice President, System Emergency Management

The National Disaster Life Support Foundation (NDLSF) oversees the National Disaster Life Support (NDLS) courses, a series of educational programs to better prepare health care professionals, emergency response personnel, and also the community, for disaster response and mass casualty events. The NDLS courses are comprehensive, all-hazards, competency-based, standardized, and multi-disciplinary.  As of 2022, there are over 130 NDLS Training Centers around the globe, with 8,000+ students receiving NDLS Certifications annually.

NDSF Subject Matter Experts

  • John Williams, MBA, Executive Director

The Institute for Disaster Management (IDM) is a nonprofit institution within UGA’s College of Public Health. Our team is comprised of disaster management professionals with a diverse set of educational and practical backgrounds. Our teams work on multiple projects with different groups and organizations in the public health and emergency management fields. On these projects, we develop, implement, and deliver customized disaster education, training, and planning. Our projects have ranged from assisting long-term care facilities, healthcare preparedness, and Ebola training and exercises.

UGA Subject Matter Experts

  • Curtis Harris, PhD – IDM Director, Associate Professor; SRDRS Executive Director
  • James Patrick O’Neal, MD – Clinical Professor
  • Kelli McCarthy, MPS, CEM-GA, EMHP – Clinical Assistant Professor
  • Austin Dobbs, MA – Program Coordinator
  • Alyssa Ragan, MPH – Emergency Preparedness Manager
  • Jim Zerylnick, RN, EMT-P, EMHP, CEM-GA – Clinical Operations Manager

Radiation Experts

  • Jim Hardeman, MSNE
  • Ziad Kazzi, MD, RITN Executive Committee Member, Emergency Medicine physician, Medical Toxicologist, Member of NCRP, Associate Medical Director Georgia Poison Center, Associate Medical Director SRDRS
  • Robert C. Whitcomb Jr., PhD, CHP

Many examples abound of the successful interaction of these relationships and sharing of physical resources in recent emergencies, such as the coastal coalitions working diligently on hurricane-based coastal evacuation while inland regions work to coordinate coastal healthcare receiving events. Metro Atlanta partners lead the state and nation on management of patients with high consequence infectious diseases.