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Faculty

Angela Branche, MD

University of Rochester NIH Vaccine Treatment and Evaluation Unit

Angela Branche is an assistant professor at the University of Rochester, School of Medicine. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Biology at the University of Pennsylvania and Doctorate in Medicine at American University of the Caribbean. She completed residency in Internal Medicine at NYU Lutheran in Brooklyn, NY and infectious disease fellowship at the University of Rochester. She currently has a clinical inpatient practice comprised of both general infectious diseases and HIV medicine patients as a New York State designated HIV/AIDS provider. She is the Co-Director of the University of Rochester NIH Vaccine Treatment and Evaluation unit. Her current research includes the study of the pathogenesis and immune response to pandemic SARS Coronavirus 2 infections and clinical interventional trials for the development of COVID19 therapeutic agents and vaccines. She is a member of the Infectious Disease Society of America and the NIH Human Cohorts Steering Committee and NIH IDCRC Emerging Infectious Expert Working Group. Dr. Branche has published several peer-reviewed articles, reviews and book chapters related to respiratory viral pathogens in adults.

Disclosures:

Other – Grant Funding from: Merck, Pfizer, Janssen

Suzanne K. Freitag, MD

Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary

Suzanne K. Freitag is the Director of the Ophthalmic Plastic Surgery Service and Co-Director of the multi-disciplinary Center for Thyroid Eye Disease and Orbital Surgery at Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary. She is an Associate Professor of Ophthalmology at Harvard Medical School. Additionllly, she has published over 120 peer reviewed articles, 4 textbooks, and is the Editor-in-Chief of Orbit, the International Journal on Orbital Disorders, Oculoplastic and Lacrimal Surgery.

Disclosures:

Royalties: Thieme, Springer
Consultant: Horizon Therapeutics, Poriferous, WL Gore & Associates
Advisory Board: Horizon Therapeutics

Linda Grinnell-Merrick, NP-BC

Linda Grinnell-Merrick, NP-BC

University of Rochester Medical Center

Linda Grinnell-Merrick currently resides in New York where she works as the lead nurse practitioner in the Division of Allergy, Immunology, and Rheumatology at the University of Rochester Medical Center. She studied at the University of Rochester, has experience in surgery, dialysis, and solid organ transplant. Linda has been practicing rheumatology since 2012 where she found her true passion. She joined the board of the Rheumatology Nurses Society in 2013 as the Chapter Chair and founded the first RNS chapter in Upstate NY. She was President of the RNS from 2017 to 2019 and is currently the Immediate Past President. She is passionate and enjoys educating nurses, APP’s, and all health care providers so patients can be provided with the highest quality care possible.

Disclosures:

Speakers Bureau: Jannsen, Amgen, Novartis, AbbVie, Sanofi
Consultant: Jannsen, Novartis, AbbVie, Sanofi, UCB, Pfizer

Laura P. Kimble, PhD, RN, FNP-C, CNE, FAHA, FAAN

Laura Kimble, PhD, RN, FNP-C, CNE, FAHA, FAAN

School of Nursing, Emory University

Laura P. Kimble currently resides in Georgia, where she works as a Clinical Professor and the Assistant Dean of Clinical Advancement at Emory University’s School of Nursing. She has been in this position since 2017 and has been in rheumatology since 2019. Laura studied at the University of Rochester in Rochester, New York, where she obtained her PhD in nursing. The Rheumatology Nurses Society is excited to have her join the board as the Research Chair, where she will be able to help expand the resources and education the RNS provides. Laura enjoys mentoring in the field of rheumatology, and in her off time, reading and listening to music.

Disclosures:

Nothing to disclose
Elizabeth Kirchner, DNP

Elizabeth Kirchner, DNP

Cleveland Clinic Foundation

Betsy Kirchner is a board-certified Family Nurse Practitioner. She earned her undergraduate degree in English Literature and Medieval Studies from Ohio Wesleyan University, her Master of Science in Nursing from Case Western Reserve University, and her Doctor of Nursing Practice from The Ohio State University. Betsy has worked at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation since 2000 in the Department of Rheumatic and Immunologic Diseases. She provides care for patients with rheumatoid arthritis, vasculitis, lupus, and psoriatic arthritis as well as other autoimmune inflammatory diseases. She is board-certified in Rheumatology Nursing, and is co-President of RhAPP (Rheumatology Advanced Practice Providers). Betsy has published several articles and book chapters and has spoken at select national and international meetings. Her work-related areas of interest include vaccines, immune related adverse events from checkpoint inhibitors, and the effects of nutrition, activity and stress on the immune system.

Disclosures:

Nothing to disclose

Gordon K. Lam, MD, FACR

Arthritis and Osteoporosis Consultants of the Carolinas

Gordon Lam is the Medical Director of Clinical and Translational Research for the Arthritis and Osteoporosis Consultants of the Carolinas. He obtained his undergraduate degree in Molecular Biology from Princeton University and his medical degree from the Duke University School of Medicine, where he also completed his internal medicine residency. He served his rheumatology fellowship at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and was an invited House Officer at the University of Oxford. Dr. Lam completed a research fellowship at the National Institutes of Health. Additionally, Dr. Lam is board-certified in internal medicine and rheumatology, and he is a fellow of the American College of Rheumatology. He has participated in clinical studies for rheumatoid arthritis, Sjogren’s syndrome, gout, spondylarthritis, and HIV. Dr. Lam has numerous peer-reviewed publications, book chapters, and abstracts.

Disclosures:

Nothing to disclose

Kamrin Macki, NP

Altru Health Systems

Kamrin Macki is a nurse practitioner with Altru Health Systems in Grand Forks, ND. She has specialized in both inpatient and outpatient Gastroenterology and Hepatology since 2001. Although her practice encompasses general gastroenterology, the majority of her independent practice is inflammatory bowel disease, liver failure/cirrhosis management, and chronic liver diseases. She is adjunct faculty at the University of North Dakota for the School of Medicine and gives GI guest lectures for the medical students and nurse practitioner students. In her clinic, there is always room for students. Rarely does a month go by without medical students, family practice residents, nurse practitioners or physician assistants completing Gastroenterology rotations with her. When she is not at work, she enjoys spending time with her family and friends, traveling, running, racing triathlons, and organizing an annual Run For Your Buns colon cancer awareness race.

Disclosures:

Nothing to disclose

Karen McKerihan, MSN, NP-C

Karen McKerihan, MSN, NP-C

Articularis Healthcare

Karen McKerihan currently resides in Charleston, South Carolina where she works as the Director of Infusion Services at Articularis Healthcare. She studied at the University of Tennessee, Walden University, and graduated Magna Cum Laude. Karen worked as an RN in women’s care and pain management since 1991. She has worked as an FNP in rheumatology since 2016 and for the past 2 years has been the Director of Infusion Services for Articularis Healthcare. She is a member of the AANP, ARP, INS, and the RNS. She grew up as a missionary kid in India, speaks Hindi, and in her spare time plays the bagpipes for the Charleston Pipe Band.

Disclosures:

Nothing to disclose

Cathy Patty-Resk, MSN, RN-BC, CPNP-PC

Cathy Patty-Resk, MSN, RN-BC, CPNP-PC

Wayne Pediatrics

Cathy Patty-Resk currently resides in Michigan where she works as a nurse practitioner at Wayne Pediatrics. She studied nursing at Wayne State University and has been practicing rheumatology since 2009. Cathy is recognized as a board-certified pediatric nurse practitioner, board-certified rheumatology nurse, President of the RNS, and an active member of the advocacy committee. She has served as the co-editor of and a contributor to the Core Curriculum for Rheumatology Nursing. Cathy currently serves as a founding executive board member of The Alliance for Transparent & Affordable Prescriptions (ATAP) and an advisory board member to The Pediatric Rheumatology Collaborative Study Group (PRCSG). She enjoys teaching pediatric rheumatology to her nurse practitioner students, getting them actively involved in real legislative advocacy, and continues serving as a mentor assisting with ongoing professional development and leadership.

Disclosures:

Nothing to disclose

Teri Puhalsky, BSN, RN, CRNI

Teri Puhalsky, BSN, RN, CRNI

Medstar Orthopedic Institute

Teri Puhalsky currently resides in Maryland where she works as an Infusion RN at Medstar Orthopedic Institute. She studied nursing at Excelsior College School of Nursing and has been practicing rheumatology since 2007. Teri received the Outstanding Clinical Performance Award as an LPN, obtained her CRNI in 2012, and is a member of Sigma Theta Tau International-PhiPi Chapter. She strives for positive patient outcomes and firmly believes that collaboration with the healthcare team is critical for chronic disease management. With a patient-focused and evidence-based nursing practice, she knows all patients can receive quality, safe, and effective care.

Disclosures:

Nothing to disclose

Veronica Richardson, MSN, ANP-C, DCNP

University of Pennsylvania Perelman Center for Advanced Medicine

Veronica Richardson is a dermatology certified nurse practitioner who currently practices in the Department of Medical Dermatology at the University of Pennsylvania’s Perelman Center for Advanced Medicine in Philadelphia, PA. She obtained her undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing. Her NP career began on a fast paced inpatient hospitalist medicine service, where she gained invaluable experience caring and managing acutely ill patients and was lovingly dubbed “The rash queen” by her peers. In 2011 she left rounding the busy halls of the hospital to take on a new challenge of being the first Advanced Practice Provider in the Department of Dermatology at the University of Pennsylvania. For the past 10 years Veronica has been caring for patients with a wide variety of dermatologic conditions from simple to complex. She has a special interest in caring for patients with Psoriasis as well as a passion for educating Advanced Practice Providers about Dermatology. In 2017 she combined her interests in education and Psoriasis and was invited to sit on the medical advisory board of the National Psoriasis Foundation, where she is the Chairperson of the Advanced Practice Providers Psoriasis Education Program. Outside of work she enjoys spending time with her husband, running, snowboarding, and traveling.

Disclosures:

Nothing to disclose

RNS Live Virtual Events

Giveaway Rules, Terms & Conditions

Live Attendee Prizes
Throughout our live event, the RNS will be raffling off a variety of prizes. You must be present during the live event when the raffle is occuring to claim a prize. In addition to our raffles, the RNS will be giving away a select number of grand prizes. Raffles are chosen at random while grand prizes will be given away to those who qualify in the following areas: Highest Engagement Overall, Most Educational Questions Asked, and the “Find Elvis” Raffle. Grand prize winners will be announced during the Farewell Reception at the end of the event. Winners must be present during the reception to claim a prize. Additional details on how to play and qualify will be provided during the live event broadcast. See also, Terms & Conditions listed below.

Referral Contest
In order for the entry to count, your referral must (a) include your first and last name in the referral field on their registration form, and (b) complete the evaluation at the end of the event or OnDemand portion of the event. Winner will be contacted via email by May 30, 2021.

Terms & Conditions

  • You must be 18 years or older to claim a prize.
  • You must be registered and attend the event to win (NOTE: OnDemand participants who did not attend the live event are still eligible to win the referral contest).
  • Winners must verify their shipping address by contacting events@rnsnurse.org before prizes will be distributed

Session Description

Transitioning your Lupus Patient from Pediatric to Adult Care

Transfer of care from pediatrics to adults can be difficult for patients, especially for patients diagnosed with lupus, a disease with a high rate of comorbidity. In this session, we will address comorbid manifestations in lupus, and how to best prepare our patients for their transition to adult providers.

Session Description

Pregnancy and Women’s Health in Psoriatic Arthritis (PsA)

In this session you will learn about how Psoriatic Arthritis (PsA) impacts your pregnant patients and the latest American College of Rheumatology guidelines.

Session Description

Treating Interstitial Lung Disease (ILD) in Sarcoidosis

Interstitial lung disease (ILD), sarcoidosis is lesser known in the specialty of rheumatology and requires a multidisciplinary approach to treatment. This session will provide the pathophysiology and disease process in interstitial lung disease, as well as treatment and support considerations in interstitial lung disease patients with sarcoidosis.

Session Description

An Integrative and Alternative Approach to Rheumatology Patient Care

In this session, we will take a look at an integrative approach to patient care, combining complementary and alternative treatments in addition to medical therapies commonly applied in rheumatology.

Session Description

An Overview of Vasculitis for the Nurse and Advanced Practice Provider

Vasculitis can range from mild to life threatening symptoms, so it is important as providers to know where your patient falls on the spectrum. This session will cover a global overarching review of the disease, including detection, manifestations, and treatments.

Session Description

What Antiphospholipid Syndrome (APS) Looks Like in the Rheumatology Patient

In this session, we will be walking through diagnosis to care for our patients with antiphospholipid syndrome (APS). We will be discussing pathophysiology, immunology, differential diagnosis, clinical presentation, and treatment of antiphospholipid syndrome.

Session Description

A Deeper Dive into Spondylitis with You and Your Patient

Though patients may not pay attention to codes that their healthcare providers jot down, nurses and advanced practice providers know just how important that clerical detail can be. In this session, we will break down what the recent ICD-10 classification of non-radiographic axial spondyloarthritis (nr-axSpA) means for you as a provider and the future treatment of non-radiographic axial spondyloarthritis.

Session Description

Updates on Guidelines in Treating Your Gout Patients

Gout is the most common form of inflammatory arthritis seen in rheumatology patients, and the American College of Rheumatology (ACR) released in 2020 new Guidelines for the Management of Gout. In this learning session we will be exploring the these updated treatment guidelines as well as recent and pipeline treatments so we can best serve our patients with the most current research released.

Session Description

Where Are We Now? A Look Back Through COVID-19 as of Fall 2020

It’s been nearly one year since COVID-19 was first identified as an infectious disease. Through the evolution and spread of the disease, we have learned a lot about what works and what we should avoid. In this session, we will talk about the most recent updates to treatment options for patients, particularly those with rheumatic diseases.

Session Description

Differentiating Between Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome and Other Hypermobility Syndromes

Take an assiduous look at the complexities between Ehlers-Danlos syndromes (EDS) and other hypermobility syndrome (HMS) as we discuss clinical manifestations, the diagnostic workup, and what long term outcomes are for the hypermobility syndrome and Ehlers-Danlos syndromes patient.

Session Description

How Genetics Will Impact the Future of Rheumatology

In this session, we will introduce translational genetics and genomics through the lenses of rheumatic diseases, such as Behcet’s Disease, Stills Disease, and Systemic Onset Juvenial Idiopathic Arthritis (SoJIA).

Session Description

Immunology in Rheumatoid Arthritis

In this session, we will discuss the application of the fundamentals of immunology in patients with rheumatoid arthritis.

Session Description

Understanding Thyroid Eye Disease and How it Relates to Rheumatology

Thyroid eye disease is often linked with other comorbidities, including many autoimmune diseases. In this session, learn how thyroid eye disease presents itself in patients with other rheumatic conditions.

Session Description

Of Mice and Men: DMOAD Therapy for the Osteoarthritic Knee

This session will focus on the common findings, challenges, and targets of therapy including the use of disease modifying osteoarthrits drugs (DMOADS) in patients with osteoarthritic knees.

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Session Description

An Overview of Interstitial Lung Disease (ILD), Ehler's Danlos Syndrome (EDS), and Polymyalgia Rheumatica (PMR)

A rapid fire approach to understanding Interstitial Lung Disease (ILD), Ehler’s Danlos Syndrome (EDS), and Polymyalgia Rheumatica (PMR).

Session Description

An Overview of Vasculitis for the Nurse and Advanced Practice Provider

Vasculitis can range from mild to life threatening symptoms, so it is important as providers to know where your patient falls on the spectrum. This session will cover a global overarching review of the disease, including detection, manifestations, and treatments.

Session Description

The Role and Impact of Infusible Therapies on Your Practice

In this session, learners will develop an understanding of the role and impact of infusion therapies and it’s impact in clinical rheumatology practice.

Session Description

The Progression of Lupus and Research

In this session, we will explore the history and progression of lupus and research in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and lupus nephritis (LN).

Session Description

Pregnancy and Women's Health in Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) presents differently throughout a woman’s journey into motherhood. From disease activity improvements to flare ups, learn what rheumatoid arthritis looks like from conception to post-partum, and how best to support mothers throughout the process.

Session Description

An Interdisciplinary Approach to Rheumatic Diseases

In this panel presentation, you will hear from multiple specialities regarding the best practices on treating rheumatic diseases.

Session Description

Navigating the COVID-19 Vaccines with Your Patients

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced healthcare providers to learn and adapt in an unprecedented environment, including accommodating our patients with the new vaccines on the market. In this session, we will discuss what the vaccine means for our practices, and how it could affect those with rheumatologic and other autoimmune diseases.

Session Description

Clinical Perspectives of Psoriatic Arthritis (PsA) Through the Eyes of Dermatology and Rheumatology

Psoriatic Arthritis (PsA) is one of the most common rheumatologic diseases we see in patients, and dermatologists are in a unique position to recognize early signs of PsA. In this co-presentation, we will hear from both a rheumatology and dermatology provider in recognizing these signs, and how the two practices can work together to provide the best patient care.