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cherylbrandi@comcast.net

BACKGROUND:

Actively practicing nurse practitioner at the Roskamp Institute. Navy nurse corps veteran with over 23 years of active duty service; retired in 1996 at rank of Commander (05). Former professor of nursing. Served as director of nursing, quality management coordinator, clinician. Hold doctorate in nursing and several master degrees.

QUESTIONS

Do you support having clinicians on the board?  Please explain your answer.

Every hospital board needs at least one clinician. Clinicians, such as nurses, have first hand knowledge of the healthcare system from the bottom up. They are able to explain health care complexities to lay people. They understand issues of cost and quality from serving on the front lines of health care. They are advocates for patients and families. As healthcare moves from volume-based to value-based compensation, who is better suited to understand value than a clinician? Without clinicians, a hospital system would not exist. I believe that clinician representation on hospital boards should be a mandatory practice.

How would you propose expanding mental health services to Sarasota’s uninsured?

Sarasota Memorial Hospital should take a lead role in expanding community mental health services. I believe the first step is to assemble a task force of key community stakeholders, with representation to include clinicians, therapists, social workers, veterans, law enforcement officials, addiction experts, and non-profit organization representatives (to name a few), with a goal of needs assessment, resource evaluation, priority setting, and plan formulation. Second, SMH could work with community foundations in procuring grants for behavioral health clinics staffed by volunteer professionals. Third, I will make sure that mental health continues to be a topic in board strategic planning discussions.