2018 Annual HIT Conference - Speaker Bios

Sajid Ahmed

WISE Healthcare

Sajid Ahmed is a true innovator and pioneer in healthcare information systems. He has unparalleled experience in all aspects of applying computer technology and web-based applications to deliver the highest quality of medical care to patients, facilitate collaboration among multiple and diverse medical care providers and systems, and increase the efficiency of healthcare environments. He is also a highly respected innovation consultant, and frequently lectures about entrepreneurism and information technology for healthcare environments.

Currently serving as an advisor to the CIIO at Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Hospital (MLK) in South Los Angeles, Mr. Ahmed was formerly MLK’s chief information and innovation officer. Mr. Ahmed is leading the hospital’s new $70 million health information technology initiative, and launching an innovation hub on the 42-acre MLK Medical Center Campus.

Mr. Ahmed’s prior experience also includes serving as director of health information technology and innovation for L.A. Care Health Plan, the nation’s largest public plan, serving more than one million Los Angeles County residents through free or low-cost health insurance programs. He was responsible for coordinating, managing and integrating healthcare information technology and eHealth initiatives among multiple users and partners. This includes all medical care providers, community organizations, government agencies, vendors, and other health information technologies. He served as vice chair of the organization’s Technical Advisory Committee. One of his most significant contributions to L.A. Care is the creation of HITEC-LA (Health Information Technology Regional Extension Center for Los Angeles County) for electronic health record adoption and implementation for providers throughout L.A. County.

Mr. Ahmed created and launched eConsult in partnership with the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services before leaving L.A. Care. eConsult is an innovative telehealth system that allows for virtual consultations and collaboration with specialists. As eConsult expands throughout California and accumulates thousands of end users, it is becoming a national model for the standard for care coordination and access to specialty care in the U.S.

Prior to his work on eConsult, Mr. Ahmed was the visionary behind SelfMD™; he developed Artificial Intelligence tools including, emulating logical inferences of cognition and intuition theory, and was instrumental in getting the U.S. Military Medical Command to adopt advanced diagnostic technologies and electronic health records systems. He also served as co-chair on health IT committees for California’s Health and Human Services Agency, helping to draft the state’s $38.8 million Health Information Technology strategic plan.

Mr. Ahmed has lectured at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) Fielding School of Public Health, and as a guest lecturer at the California Institute of Technology (CalTech), University of Southern California (USC) and CalState LA. USC honored him for his teaching at the USC Lloyd Greif Center for Entrepreneurial Studies and also was a finalist for the Advanced Business League (ABL) Innovative Leadership Award for Healthcare. In 2016, the Los Angeles Business Journal lauded Sajid as “CIO/CTO of the Year” across all industries in the Greater Los Angeles Area. Currently, he is an Advisory Board member of the California Health eQuality Initiative based at the University of California, Davis.

Anthony Begando

Professional Credentials Exchange, LLC

Anthony builds and develops high functioning companies, internal operations, and creates solutions to very complex problems. He has developed and led numerous ventures ranging from healthcare software companies, consulting firms, outsourcing operations, and tech-enabled service businesses. Throughout his career, he has had the opportunity to serve clients ranging from the military, Fortune 500 firms, major health systems, middle-market ventures, growth-stage firms, and ground-zero start-ups. Anthony has spent the last 17 years developing solutions simplifying and automating practitioner administration.

Sumeet Bhatia

Founder and CEO

Sumeet Bhatia is the Founder and CEO of Aiva, the voice assistant built to improve both patient and caregiver satisfaction. Sumeet has over 10 years of experience delivering enterprise software-as-a-service to the nation's best healthcare institutions. Most recently, he was co-founder and Chief Technology Officer at TigerText, the leading provider of clinical communication solutions for the healthcare industry. Sumeet received his BS in Computer Science and Engineering from UCLA.

Neeraj Bhavani

Founder & CEO

Neeraj S. Bhavani founded Tagnos, Inc. in 2005 and serves as Chief Executive Officer. He has over 17 years of experience in Strategy and IT consulting with experience in Healthcare, Databases and Wireless. He founded Tagnos in 2005 and built it from the ground-up, which involved corporate development, strategic planning and product management. He oversees the strategic vision of it and has been instrumental in developing and managing alliances and distribution channels through US, UK, India and Singapore markets. He is a recognized patent holder with several inventions in wireless healthcare and workflow space - both devices and IT solutions. He is passionate about bringing change through implementation of lean manufacturing and other industrial engineering concepts to the healthcare processes.

Ash Damle

Founder & CEO

As the Founder and CEO of Lumiata, Ash Damle drives the company’s mission of predicting individual health risks with artificial intelligence. At Lumiata, Ash has pioneered a first-of-kind medical knowledge graph based on current scientific research and clinical practice. The Lumiata knowledge graph combines multi-sourced health data with medical knowledge, analyzes the complex relationships between them, and provides precise, clinically-relevant, interpretable analytics. 

Ash is a technologist and data scientist deeply rooted in the application of big data to health and its intersection with design, and has worked with organizations in the United States, China, UK, Canada, Australia, France, Germany, India and Japan. Over the last 15 years, he has researched, built and applied AI technologies with leading institutions and organizations, including the UCLA AI and Robotics Lab, MIT’s AI Lab, the MIT Media Lab, the US Navy and NASA. Ash graduated from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in both Computer Science and Mathematics, has published numerous papers, and has received patents in real-time unstructured semantic analysis. 

Dennis Deapen, DrPH

Professor of Preventive Medicine, Keck School of Medicine
University of Southern California

Dennis Deapen, DrPH is Professor of Preventive Medicine at the University of Southern California Keck School of Medicine. He has been Director of the Los Angeles Cancer Surveillance Program (CSP), the population-based cancer registry for Los Angeles County since 1988. The CSP functions in the USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center and is also a member of the California Cancer Registry and the National Cancer Institute’s Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results (SEER) Program. He is also Associate Director of Cancer Prevention and Control for the USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center and serves on the Steering Committee of the adolescent and young adult cancer program AYA@USC.

Dr. Deapen received a Master of Public Health (epidemiology) degree from Loma Linda University and Doctor of Public Health (epidemiology) degree from the University of California Los Angeles. He has been an epidemiologist since 1977 conducting research in etiology, prevention and survivorship of cancer as well as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and Parkinson disease. He has created or led large, long-term cohort studies of cancer risk including the first and longest (34 year) study of women undergoing augmentation mammoplasty.

He is a founding investigator of the 133,000 member California Teachers Study, the 17,000 twin pair International Twin Study and Director of the Childhood Oncology Group’s national Long-term Follow-up Center. He has been author or co-author of over 160 peer-reviewed publications, reviews, editorials and book chapters. He served as President of North American Association of Central Cancer Registries as well as many years on the Board of Directors and as a member of the Executive Committee of the International Association of Cancer Registries of the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC). He has developed and introduced methodologic advances for population-based cancer surveillance systems and registry-based research.  He has served in multiple roles as a consultant to the US Food and Drug Administration, National Cancer Institute, National Program of Central Cancer Registries, North American Association of Central Cancer Registries, California Lupus Registry and multiple cancer registry based linkage studies.  He currently serves as a member of the National Death Index Board of Advisors and the National Breast Implant Registry Steering Committee of the Plastic Surgery Foundation in conjunction with the FDA.

Dan Exley, MMI, FABC

Founder & President
Exley Informatics

Dan Exley is Founder and President of Exley Informatics, advising clients in the development and execution of strategies related to Healthcare IT Strategy, Digital Solutions, Medical Informatics, Information Architecture, Business Intelligence, Analytics, Process Improvement, and Data Governance. Exley Informatics helps organizations innovate and optimize their operations to achieve superior results across clinical, financial, and experience domains. Dan has been a leader in healthcare analytics and informatics since 2002. He was responsible for major aspects of the first enterprise-wide Epic install and subsequent optimization at NorthShore University Health System. Later he built the Analytics and Big Data practice at MemorialCare Health System in Southern California as it transitioned from a group of acute-care facilities to an integrated delivery system providing population health to over one million patients every year. He has a proven track record of designing and implementing novel solutions and leading teams to create positive impact for patients, providers, and organizations.

A lifelong learner, Dan was one of the developers of the Medical Informatics Certificate program at National-Louis University in Chicago, was program coordinator for an ONC HIT Workforce Development program, has been a regular lecturer at the USC Marshall School of Business, and developed the MemorialCare Analytics Fellowship program. Most recently he was co-developer and instructor of the CSU Fullerton Healthcare Analytics certificate program. Dan holds a master’s degree in Medical Informatics from Northwestern University, and is a Fellow of The Advisory Board Company.

Andy Krackov

Vice President for Data Strategy

Andy Krackov, the Vice President for Data Strategy at Velir, has developed a specialty as a data content strategist who can translate data to multiple audiences, in order to inform policymaking, raise public awareness of issues, empower communities, and achieve other meaningful social change.

Over the years, he has fine-tuned his understanding of what works to achieve impact with data through his background in communication, philanthropy and the startup sector via the data storytelling platform, LiveStories, where he most recently was Vice President for Partnerships and Strategy.

He has served on national and state boards related to data; speaks at leading conferences about effective use of data, and has written for multiple publications on the topic. He began his work as a journalist at U.S. News & World Report, and has a bachelor’s degree in history from Washington University, as well as a master’s degree in communication theory from Stanford University.

Dr. Paul A. Markham, MBA

President & CEO
V3 Health Strategy

Dr Paul A. Markham is a global healthcare business & academic strategist and natural transformational leader. He is a trusted advisor in influencing and shaping the future of Healthcare IT, with a Doctorate focused on Leadership efficacy in Medicine, and is always at the cutting edge of technology trends. Dr Markham is known as a pioneer in driving change in healthcare. A pioneer in blockchain and the application of artificial intelligence as it applies to care automation and precision medicine. A creative whole-brain thinker, who combines analytical logic with innovative ideas, most recently machine / deep learning and artificial intelligence and commercial platform ethos in healthcare.  Dr. Markham has a record of accomplishment working as a change agent in the healthcare realm. Entering healthcare organizations or firms to energize focus and re-align corporate strategy, resulting in sustainable acceleration of revenue, reduction in cost and growth of profits. His consultative approach applies a mixture of strategic foresight and holistic insight and constant collaboration, while incorporating different ideas and insights. Prior, Dr. Markham reinvigorated numerous healthcare growth companies and spent a decade creating, driving and marketing enterprise solutions at GE Healthcare. Dr. Markham is a Dual US/Australian Citizen and holds degrees in Electronics Engineering EE, BBus Marketing & Management from University of Technology Sydney UTS, with an MBA Leadership, coupled with a Doctorate in Healthcare Leadership from the University of Newcastle.

Hela Mor

Principal & Founder
H2M Healthcare Consulting, Inc.

Hela M. Mor, MPP, principal and founder of H2M Healthcare Consulting, Inc. has over 13 years of managed care experience in government-sponsored and private health coverage. Her focus is on health policy and developing, implementing and operating strategic projects, programs and initiatives for payers and providers that result in high quality cost effective care. She specializes in Medicaid, Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP), Medicare, uninsured and value-based care including development and operations of Accountable Care Organizations (ACO).

Hela has first-hand experience implementing and operating ACOs. As a Director of ACO Operations at a large Southern CA medical group/IPA Hela successfully oversaw application, implementation and operations of CMS Medicare ACO programs serving the Medicare Fee-for-Service population and commercial ACO programs with health plans serving the PPO population.

Hela has extensive project/program management experience. She formerly led a PMO department at a large Medical Group/IPA where she oversaw a team of program and project managers supporting enterprise-wide strategic projects. She has managed a variety of innovative projects and programs at publicly operated health plans and for-profit medical groups in the areas of value-based care, quality improvement, disease management, children's health coverage, patient and provider engagement and community outreach and retention, serving different patient populations.

Hela earned her Master's degree in Public Policy from UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs and her Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from UC San Diego. She is a graduate of various leadership programs including the HCP Leadership Institute and Coro Health Leadership Program.

Dipti Patel-Misra, Ph.D., MBA, PCC

Chief Data & Analytics Officer

Dipti Patel-Misra, PhD, MBA, leads Vituity’s data analytics team. She has a 20-year track record of success in designing and implementing data strategies for the healthcare sector and was named to Becker’s Hospital Review’s 2017 list of Women to Know in MedTech. Dipti specializes in simplifying complex issues to drive the strategic objectives of our enterprise. She is passionate about disrupting healthcare leading to improved healthcare outcomes and empowering leaders to engage and change the healthcare landscape. She earned her PhD in chemistry from Johns Hopkins University and an MBA from the University of North Carolina (UNC). She also holds a Professional Certified Coach (PCC) credential from the International Coach Federation. Dipti sits on the board of the North Carolina Hospital Association Quality Center and was the Health Informatics Board Chair from 2014-2016. At UNC Charlotte she led the effort to build an innovation lab at the university via an industry-academia partnership.

Sanjay Patil

Chairman & Founder
CareConnectors, Inc.

Dr. Sanjay Patil is a Cardiologist, Technologist, and Entrepreneur who has also developed expertise in international telehealth and in Value-Based Care programs. Having practiced medicine at several of America’s top institutions and founded three successful healthcare technology companies, he is deeply experienced in the application of technology to the complexities of healthcare. Dr. Patil is passionate about the value of data and specializes in the design, implementation and use of advanced integration and analytics.

Sanjay founded and is currently CEO of the CareConnectors Group, a Southern California based healthcare information technology and managed care holding company that specializes in data integration and system interoperability coupled with innovative delivery of clinical services focused on quality and timely disease burden assessment and treatment.

Prior to founding CareConnectors, Sanjay served simultaneously as CMIO and Chief Transformation Officer of the Mercy Health Select ACO in Cincinnati, OH. In these concurrent roles, he managed data governance, aggregation, and analytics for an MSSP ACO and oversaw enterprise-wide EHR implementation, while also overseeing acquisition and integration of Kaiser Ohio physicians and operations into the Mercy Physician network.

Before joining Mercy Health Select, Sanjay was Informatics Director for Mercy Medical Associates, a network of primary care and specialty physicians delivering care 60+ locations in the Cincinnati area. Sanjay oversaw an enterprise EHR implementation and optimized Mercy’s business intelligence platforms.

Sanjay served as a founder, CEO, board member, and practicing physician at Cardiology Associates, PSC from 1998 to 2010, and from 2004 through 2010, carried the additional responsibility of Cardiovascular Service Line Director for St. Elizabeth Healthcare. After growing Cardiology Associates from 8 physicians to 23, and developing additional nuclear, echo, and vascular programs which brought more than $17M to the Cardiology Associates’ bottom line, he negotiated the sale of the practice to St Elizabeth Healthcare, including sale of assets and physician employment agreements with 5-year income guarantees and retention bonuses.

Sanjay earned his BS in Biology and Computer Science from UC Irvine and his Doctor of Medicine degree from MR Medical College in Gulbarga, India. He performed a residency, and subsequently served as Chief Resident at Sinai Hospital in Detroit, MI, while earning an MS in Clinical Research Design & Biostatics at the University of Michigan. Sanjay completed a Cardiology Fellowship at Beth Israel Deaconess/Harvard Medical School in Boston. He is Board Certified in Cardiovascular Medicine and licensed in KY and with pending licensure  in CA.

Tom Stitt

Managing Director
CareConnectors, Inc.

Tom's work focus is on early stage funding and initial market adoption for startups and restarts as a business unit leader, sole contributor, or consultant. He has experience in logistics, interactive media, and health care market segments. He often serves as an interim or permanent leader of business units that are in transition. He has led business development, product and project teams addressing healthcare, embedded software (e.g. set-top boxes, gas pumps) and 3D visualization market segments in the US, EMEA and Asia-Pacific.

Tom is currently the Managing Director of Care Connectors Group where he is responsible for business strategy, new market development, mergers/acquisitions, non-clinical/administrative operations and investor relations/funding. His background in marketing and communications makes him a key contributor to business development efforts for the group and for its affiliates.

Prio to joining CareConnectors, Tom had an extended career in technology startups operating in the United States and throughout the Asia-Pacific region. A serial entrepreneur, Tom has founded, co-founded, invested in, or driven funding acquisition for startups in the logistics, healthcare and consumer electronics segments, including a technology for folding and nesting empty shipping containers to reduce empty shipping container back-haul costs, an interactive 3D mathematical visualization product for simulation and animation, an open-source internet-on-television consumer device, a broadcast video-on-demand advertising, marketing and merchandising platform for leading performing artists and an interactive media network for healthcare organizations served through satellite TV set-top box software.


Ernest Valente, ​Ph.D. 

Vice President, Network Analytics
Optum Advisory Services

Ernest Valente, Ph.D. has diverse experience in healthcare cost and quality measurement, healthcare analytics, health services research, and health policy research. Prior to joining Optum, Ernie served as the Vice President of Health Economics at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Minnesota and as the Vice President, Medical Informatics at Blue Shield of California. In those roles, Ernie led his team in healthcare cost and quality measurement for value-based payment contracts, customer reporting, and regulatory reporting. His team additionally evaluated the effectiveness of health interventions that were designed to improve healthcare quality and efficiency. These evaluations typically involved complex analysis of the health plan's claims and administrative data, ancillary clinical services data, and publicly available administrative datasets. Ernie was responsible for ensuring that these studies used appropriate technical methods and that the results accurately addressed the study objectives. Ernie also served on several external quality and efficiency measurement expert panels during his time at Blue Cross and Blue Shield, and he participated in several statewide quality and efficiency measurement collaboratives. Ernie took his M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

May Wang, PhD

Chief Technology Officer and Co-founder

Dr. May Wang is Chief Technology Officer (CTO) and Co-founder of ZingBox, a Gartner Cool Vendor in the Internet of Things (IoT) Security. May was previously the Head of Asia Pac Research and a Principal Architect in Cisco CTO office driving new technology initiatives. Her algorithms have been deployed in Cisco’s best-selling products.  May is on advisory board of several VC firms and tech companies.  

May has been the recipient of numerous awards including Silicon Valley Women of Influence 2017 and several Stevie Awards.  She received her Ph.D. from Stanford University in Electrical Engineering.