Innovations in Healthcare Delivery Systems Symposium

Sponsored by: Lehigh University HSE in collaboration with Lehigh Valley Business Coalition on Healthcare

The need for professionals in the healthcare field is strong and growing due to the aging population and national crisis of rapidly increasing healthcare costs. The Healthcare Systems Engineering (HSE) and Industrial & Systems Engineering (ISE) symposium will discuss the challenges in the field and how the HSE master’s degree program can help solve these problems. A panel of professionals in the healthcare industry will be discussing their thoughts on the field and answering questions.

Date & Location
Date: April 23, 2014
Time: 4:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Location: Wood Dining Room, Iacocca Hall
Lehigh's Mountaintop Campus - Directions

Cost: Free

To register, please click here. For planning purpose we ask that you complete registration online by April 18, 2014 Dinner will be served.



Panel 1 - Quality of Healthcare Delivery

  • Andrew Bloschichak, M.D., MBA - Senior Medical Director, Provider Strategy and Integration, Highmark, Inc.
  • Donna Sabol, RN, MSN, - Vice President and Chief Quality Officer, St. Luke’s University Health Network
  • Denise Harr, M.D - Medical Director at Capital BlueCross
  • Mark Wendling, M.D. - Family Physician, Lehigh Valley Health Network


Panel 2 - Informatics and Technology in Healthcare Delivery

  • Deb Halkins - Director, Management Engineering
  • Tom Huntzinger - Vice President, Emerson, Reid & Company
  • Henry F. Korth - Professor of Computer Science and Engineering, Lehigh University
  • Dale Lucht - Senior Executive, Lehigh Valley Hospital and Health Network
  • Mostafa Wali - Senior Director, Risk Management Center of Excellence, Global Pharmacovigilance & Epidemiology Sanofi


Andrew Bloschichak, M.D., MBA
Senior Medical Director, Provider Strategy and Integration, Highmark, Inc.

Andrew Bloschichak, M.D., MBA, currently serves as Highmark’s Senior Medical Director of Provider Strategy and Integration.  In this role, Dr. Bloschichak is the lead physician for Highmark’s clinical team focused on provider strategies to include PCMH, ACA/ACO efforts, bundled payments, and all Pay-for-Value and alternative payment programs. Dr. Bloschichak previously served as the vice president and medical director for Highmark Medicare Services (HMS). During his tenure with HMS, Dr. Bloschichak’s duties and responsibilities included the development of all Medicare policies on coverage and pricing and providing clinical expertise and oversight for Medicare’s program integrity, medical review and informatics activities. A Central Pennsylvania native and graduate of Hahnemann Medical College, Dr. Bloschichak began his medical career as a solo, private practicing family physician in his hometown of Frackville, Pa.   Dr. Bloschichak joined Highmark’s predecessor company Pennsylvania Blue Shield in 1994.  He is a member of the Pennsylvania Academy of Family Physicians, the American Academy of Family Physicians, the Pennsylvania Medical Society, the Dauphin County Medical Society, and the AMA. In addition, he is a member of the PAFP Legislative Affairs Commission, American Board of Medical Quality, the Pennsylvania Medical Society’s Medical Director Forum, and a board member of the Pennsylvania Health Care Quality Alliance and the Kidney Foundation of Central PA.   Dr. Bloschichak also holds an MBA Program at Mount Saint Mary’s College.

Dr. Tamás Terlaky

Dr. Tamás Terlaky is the George N. and Soteria Kledaras Endowed Chair Professor, and Department Chair of Industrial and Systems Engineering, Lehigh University, Bethlehem, PA, USA.

His education includes M.Sc. Mathematics (1979, Eötvös University, Budapest), Ph.D. Operations Research (1981, Eötvös University, Budapest) , CSc (1985) and DSc (2005) from the Hungarian Academy of Sciences.  Prior to his appointment at Lehigh University he taught at Eötvös University, Budapest, Hungary; Delft University of Technology, Delft, The Netherlands; McMaster University, ON, Canada.  At McMaster he also served as the founding Director of the School of Computational Engineering and Science.

Professor Terlaky has published four books, edited over ten books and journal special issues and published over 160 research papers.  Topics include theoretical and algorithmic foundations of operations research (e.g., invention of the criss-cross method), design and analysis of large classes of interior point methods, computational optimization, worst case examples of the central path, nuclear reactor core reloading optimization, oil refinery and VLSI design optimization and robust radiation therapy treatment optimization.
Professor Terlaky is Founding Editor-in-Chief of the journal, Optimization and Engineering.  He has served as associate editor of seven journals and has served as conference chair, conference organizer, and distinguished invited speaker at conferences all over the world.  He is general Chair of the INFORMS 2015 Annual Meeting, a former Chair of INFORMS' Optimization Society, Chair of the Continuous Optimization Steering Committee of the Mathematical Programming Society and Fellow of the Fields Institute, Canada.  He has received the MITACS Mentorship Award for his distinguished graduate student supervisory record.  His research interests include high-performance optimization methods, optimization modeling and optimization problem solving in engineering sciences.


Deb Halkins - Director of Management Engineering
Lehigh Valley Health Network

As Director of Management Engineering at Lehigh Valley Health Network (LVHN), Deborah develops recommendations to produce operational improvements and increase cost effectiveness of hospital activities by applying industrial engineering and business management techniques to problem-solving efforts.  Her department is also responsible for several hospital-wide programs, including the operational benchmarking effort, the internally developed “Balanced Scorecard” management tool, and the related “Labor Budget Worksheet” budgeting tool.  Her department also utilizes simulation software to answer “what if” questions. Prior to the construction of the Kasych inpatient facility, she and her team were involved in the Network’s “Growing Organizational Capacity” project which focused on improving resource utilization, efficiencies, and throughput to handle increased bed demand with existing capacity.  Lean concepts, touch time studies, statistical analysis, process audits, forecasting, modeling, and a capacity dashboard were utilized.  In 2007, she was part of a core team that introduced the Network to Toyota Production System (TPS)/lean concepts as a system for standardizing continuous improvement efforts throughout the Network.

Deborah earned a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering from The Pennsylvania State University, a Master of Science in Industrial Engineering and a Master of Business Administration, both from Lehigh University. She was a member of the Inaugural Undergraduate Advisory Board for the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering at Lehigh University, serving from October, 2006, to August, 2010.
She was a board member for the local chapter of the Institute of Industrial Engineers (IIE).  In 1993, she traveled to China, PRC, with the Citizen Ambassador Program’s Materials Management Delegation to talk with businesses and government groups.  She has an IIE-certified lean green belt.  Deborah served as a faculty member for LVHN’s internal “Practice Management College” and has co-authored 3 published articles related to her collaborative work at Lehigh Valley Health Network.

Prior to joining Lehigh Valley Health Network in 1999, Deborah spent over 20 years in manufacturing, gaining experiences in several industries, including steel operations, scientific research, food processing, and industrial gases where she held positions in industrial engineering, production management, maintenance & materials management, and purchasing.  Her manufacturing experiences include line management, methods and productivity improvement, plant layout, production logistics, MRP systems, estimating, master scheduling, routing, budgeting, capacity planning, quality control, statistical analysis, and touch time studies.

Denise Harr - Medical Director, Capital BlueCross

Dr. Denise Harr is a Medical Director at Capital BlueCross with primary involvement in Capital BlueCross’ accountable care arrangements (ACAs) and other value-based reimbursement models.  Additionally, she provides clinical guidance to the sales team and is an external presence with customers and clients.

Dr. Harr joined Capital BlueCross in May 2012, after spending fifteen years as a clinician in an active primary care practice in Central Pennsylvania.  Most of those clinical years were spent as a physician partner in a multi-specialty group.  During the last several years of her clinical practice, she was a member of an ACA which had been newly established in the area.  Her firsthand experience in an accountable care relationship provided the foundation for her work at Capital BlueCross.

At Capital BlueCross, Dr. Harr provides clinical leadership to the multidisciplinary team that supports the ACAs.  Through her work, she regularly interacts with the quality department in maintaining the ACA quality program, an essential component of the accountable care model. Her clinical experience helps guide the clinical team in their care management activities. Analyzing data along with members of the analytics and reporting staff allows for the identification of actionable areas of opportunity that can then be leveraged to effect practice change.  Focus remains, in all of these activities, on medical value, aiming for cost-effective, high quality care delivery, while improving the patient experience of care.

Dr. Harr is a graduate of Hood College in Frederick, Maryland, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Biochemistry.  She earned her Medical Degree at the Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine.  She is board certified in family medicine.



Tom Huntzinger
Vice President
Emerson, Reid & Company

Tom has nearly 20 years of experience in the Healthcare Industry. He has worked in healthcare administration, reinsurance, sales, marketing and consulting during that time.
Emerson, Reid & Company the largest group health insurance General Agency in the Northeastern US. Tom works with health insurance agents in Eastern Pennsylvania as a liaison between agents and health insurance carriers.
Tom has served on the Healthcare Legislative Committee of the Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce for over eight years, and has been the Chair for more than two years. He also serves as a member of the Chamber’s Public Policy Committee and Board of Governors.
Tom recently presented the position of the GLVCOC relating to Health Insurance Exchanges at the Forum sponsored by the Commissioner of the Department of Insurance.

Henry Korth
Professor of Computer Science and Engineering
Lehigh University

Henry F. Korth is Professor of Computer Science and Engineering at Lehigh University. From 2003 to 2009, he served as chair of the Department of Computer Science and Engineering during a period of rapid development of the newly created (2001) department.  His publications include three books, one of which, Database Systems Concepts, is in its sixth edition; over 100 journal articles, conference publications and other technical papers; and twelve book chapters. Korth also holds eight patents.

Before his arrival at Lehigh, Korth held positions of leadership with Lucent Technology’s Bell Laboratories in Murray Hill, N.J. As Director of Database Principles Research, he led teams of Ph.D. researchers in investigating XML data management, web-based data, main-memory database systems, real-time systems, parallel systems and other topics.  At Lucent, Korth was a founding member of the Joint Development and Delivery Center, which managed the rapid transition of Bell Labs prototypes into marketplace products. He was a member of two teams that received the Bell Labs President’s Silver Award, in 1998 for the QTM™ aggregation engine and in 1999 for the DataBlitz™ main-memory storage manager. Korth also led the creation of two other Lucent products: the Interprenet™ IP Usage Suite, and the WebLightning™ Web Accelerator.

Before joining Lucent, Korth served as vice president of Panasonic Technologies and director of the Matsushita Information Technology Laboratory, the leading computer systems research laboratory for Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. In this position, Korth conducted research in multidatabase systems, mobile computing, database user interfaces and multimedia information systems.  Korth is a Fellow of the Association for Computing Machinery,  (ACM) and a Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE,). At the 1995 International Conference on Very Large Data Bases, a paper he co-authored titled “A Model of CAD Transactions” was chosen as “Most Influential Paper from the Proceedings of Ten Years Ago.” Korth has served on the editorial boards of several computing journals, ACM Transactions on Database Systems and the VLDB Journal.  From 1983 to 1992, Korth served on the faculty of the Department of Computer Sciences at the University of Texas at Austin, where he attained the rank of associate professor with tenure.  Prior to that, he was a research staff member at the IBM T. J. Watson Research Center.

Hank holds Ph.D., M.A., and M.S.E degrees from Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey, in computer science, and an A.B degree in mathematics from Williams College, Williamstown, Massachusetts.

Dale Lucht

Dale Lucht is a senior executive with a track record of achieving business objectives through the application of lean practices at the tool, strategic and cultural levels of an organization. Dale is the Director SPPI (Lean Transformation and Management Engineering) for Lehigh Valley Health Network (LVHN), a network of hospitals and physician clinics employing over 1,000 physicians and 10,000 employees. Dale has a B.S. Industrial Engineering from Iowa State University and an MBA from Drake University.

Hisham Nabaa

Mr. Nabaa was appointed Professor of Practice in Industrial and Systems Engineering and Director of the Healthcare Systems Engineering Program in May 2011. As a new director, Hisham was responsible for developing and launching the HSE program. Presently, he works with Lehigh faculty to coordinate research projects between the healthcare delivery organizations and HSE, teaching new healthcare systems courses, and organizing and supervising student projects in the program’s capstone course.  He also establishes relationships with industry leaders, such as Mayo Clinic, Bayada Home Health Care, Highmark, Capital BlueCross, Welch Allyn, FDA and other government agencies.  In addition, Hisham establishes and works with the HSE Industry Advisory Council providing direction for the program.

Mr. Nabaa earned a Master’s of Science degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Wilkes University in1996, focusing on digital image processing and robotics. He has served as manager of design/test engineering at PRIMUS Technologies, and as director of MIS for Mercy Health Partners Wilkes-Barre. More recently, he served as Director of Engineering Operations and Strategy for Wilkes University’s division of Engineering & Physics. His skills and experience include systems consulting, client relations, healthcare IT, streamline programs, reducing processing time, and producing creative management reporting tools.

Donna Sabol, RN, MSN,
Vice President and Chief Quality Officer
St. Luke’s University Health Network

Ms. Sabol’s responsibilities include successful integration and performance of the network performance improvement structure and activities inclusive of medical staff PI functions; development of strategies to improve clinical, service and financial outcomes; staff and management PI education; establishment of accurate data measurement and analysis.

She provides leadership to the Board, senior operations team, medical staff and nursing to design and implement operational strategies to achieve organizational strategic objectives.

Ms. Sabol has held a variety of management and administrative positions in her 35 years of health care experience.

Currently she has direct responsibility for management of the Network Quality Resources Department, Infection Control Department, Data Abstraction Department, Clinical Risk Management, Patient Safety Department, Documentation and Coding Department and the Clinical Trials Department.  Ms. Sabol also functions as a project manager for key organizational projects.

Under Ms Sabol’s leadership, St. Luke’s has achieved a number of national and state awards as well as significant financial awards in several national pay-for-performance initiatives.

Mostafa Wali - Senior Director
Risk Management Center of Excellence
Global Pharmacovigilance & Epidemiology Sanofi

Dr. Mostafa Wali is a Senior Director in the Risk Management Center of Excellence at Sanofi where he is responsible for providing leadership and expertise on global risk management strategies. He began his career in the pharmaceutical industry in 2005 as a post-doctoral fellow at Johnson & Johnson Pharmaceutical Research and Development. Following the fellowship, he joined Sanofi-Pasteur as a Product Safety Officer where he was instrumental in the development of several vaccines in the flu franchise. In 2009, Dr. Wali played a critical role in the development, approval, and launch of the monovalent H1N1 vaccine to address the influenza pandemic. He transitioned to Sanofi in 2010 as a Risk Management Officer and currently supports multiple therapeutic areas and a variety of products, including biologics and advanced therapy medicinal products. Dr. Wali has a passion for risk management and serves as the Global Pharmacovigilance & Epidemiology Post-Doctoral Fellowship Program Director.

Mark Wendling
Family Physician
Lehigh Valley Health Network

Dr. Mark Wendling is a graduate of the Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine and after a residency in Family Medicine at St. Margaret Memorial Hospital, Pittsburgh, has been a practicing family physician at Lehigh Valley Health Network since 1997. His practice, Valley Family Medical Center, is located in Emmaus, PA.

In addition to being the current Chair of the Lehigh Valley Physician Group, Dr. Wendling is also the Associate Medical Director of Performance Improvement at the Lehigh Valley Physician Group.

Dr. Wendling serves in an administrative role as Medical Director of the Lehigh Valley Physician Hospital Organization / Valley Preferred.


• 3:50pm: Registration

• 4:15pm: Welcome Hisham Nabaa, Director Healthcare Systems Engineering, Lehigh University

• 4:30pm: Opening Remarks Dr. Tamás Terlaky, Department Chair of Industrial and Systems Engineering, Lehigh University

• 5:00pm: Panel #1 “Quality of Healthcare Delivery” Panel

• 5:45pm: Panel #2 “Informatics and Technology in Healthcare Delivery” Panel

• 6:30pm: Closing Remarks Hisham Nabaa, Director Healthcare Systems Engineering program, Lehigh University

Contact Information
Linda Wismer
Healthcare Systems Engineering

Abby Barlok
Industrial and Systems Engineering