URAC Names 2010 Health Care Stars! Award Winners at Annual Quality Summit and Awards Program

Oct 13, 2010, 17:56 ET from URAC

Health Care Professionals Named for Consumer Empowerment and Protection Work

WASHINGTON, Oct. 13 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- URAC, a leading health care accreditation organization, recognized its 2010 HealthCare Stars! Awards winners. Honored this year were Michael Testa, CPhT, Deborah Weaver, RN, BSN, and Frank Whitchurch, RPh. URAC's Health Care Stars! Award honors those who have demonstrated a commitment to the welfare of health care consumers through saving and improving lives, preventing adverse health outcomes, and other positive changes. The awards were presented during URAC's 2010 Annual Quality Summit & Awards Program, October 5-7 in Chicago, Illinois.

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"The Health Care Stars! Awards recognize individual health care professionals who deliver on the mission of protecting and empowering consumers and promoting quality care through their daily work," said Alan P. Spielman, president and CEO of URAC. "These individuals are truly the 'unsung heroes' of health care management, serving as role models for how to make a real difference in the lives of health care consumers."

This year's Health Care Star! Award winners are:

  • Michael Testa, CPht, Senior Manager, Program Integrity for Express Scripts was named a winner in the category of Consumer Protection.  Mr. Testa was recognized for his dedication in identifying a fraud case using in geographical query he developed. Through his efforts a controlled substance ring involving a pharmacy, physician, and others was discovered. The program is now incorporated into the systems monthly processes to identify similar patterns in data for future cases. As a result of Michael's efforts, patients have a safer provider network.
  • Deborah Weaver, RN, BSN, Transplant Case Manager for CIGNA was named a winner in the Consumer Empowerment category.  Ms. Weaver was recognized for her passionate dedication to her patients and showing the true value of a case manager. In one special example, Deborah worked with a new mom and 6-week old infant through a series of treatments working to avoid an unnecessary transplant. Deborah researched multi-state facilities, managing transfer to a specialized facility, facilitated post discharge needs with in-network providers, and worked with clinical providers for outpatient therapies.
  • Frank Whitchurch, RPh, Pharmacist in Charge with Prescription Solutions was named a winner in the Consumer Protection category.  Mr. Whitchurch was recognized for his work on an unused prescription donation program in Kansas. He lobbied for a state law and has become a true champion of the program allowing mail service pharmacies to donate unused medications to some 36 safety net clinics and Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHC) in more than 30 cities throughout Kansas. Frank's passion for connecting people with today's modern pharmacy makes a difference in improving consumers quality of life and health.

URAC's 2010 Health Care Stars! Awards were open to any individual who works for the more than 500 organizations that have earned or are in the process of earning URAC accreditation. The Awards were judged by a panel of health care industry experts including URAC advisory committee members, board members and key leaders from accredited organizations. The panel reviewed all of the nominations, looking for specific accomplishments and clear results that the nominee had made a positive impact on the health of the consumers they serve.

About URAC

URAC, an independent, nonprofit organization, is well-known as a leader in promoting health care quality through its accreditation, education and measurement programs. URAC offers a wide range of quality benchmarking programs and services that keep pace with the rapid changes in the health care system, and provide a symbol of excellence for organizations to validate their commitment to quality and accountability. Through its broad-based governance structure and an inclusive standards development process, URAC ensures that all stakeholders are represented in establishing meaningful quality measures for the entire health care industry. For more information, visit www.urac.org.