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COVID-19: What We Learned: Staffing/People Resources

March 3, 2021 @ 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm

Approved for 1.5 ACHE Face-to-Face Credits

Emergency management requires precise identification and allocation of staff to align capabilities and capacity with the need to effectively deliver care for the community. The COVID-19 outbreak caused a substantial shift in the availability of staff and resources, and the accessibility of timely delivery of care. In response to the evolving needs, organizations have shifted staff in a variety of ways to ensure they were able to effectively screen, triage and care for patients. This panel will provide strategies and tactics of how their organizations adjusted their staffing structure to ensure that the most appropriate level of care is delivered during a medical surge such as the COVID-19.

Date:  Wednesday, March 3
Time:  12-1:30pm

Moderator: Jim Wiederhold

President and Founder
Wiederhold & Associates


Gia Milo-Slagle
Director of Product Management and Development

Ajith Pai, PharmD, FACHE
Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Cleburne

Shawn Salter
Chief Administrative Officer
CHRISTUS EMS & Flight For Life

Shelly Welch, MBA, BSN, RN, NEA-BC
Chief Nursing Officer
CHRISTUS Mother Frances Hospital-Tyler, CHRISTUS Louis and Peaches Owens Heart Hospital, & CHRISTUS Mother Frances Hospital-South Tyler

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Speakers Bios:


As a 30-year veteran in Healthcare Technology, Gia Milo-Slagle has held numerous positions during her tenure with HealthStream, formerly at McKesson and most recently, as part of the acquisition into HealthStream, all specializing in Workforce Productivity Management and Staffing Optimization.

As the Director of Product Management and Development within the Capacity suite, she leads the design, development and research efforts for our market leading ANSOS ™ Staff Scheduling and ANSOS Time and Attendance solutions.

With over 300+ facilities within the U.S., Canada and Australia/New Zealand, our development is highly customer-driven, with the sole focus on clinical relevance.

Gia chairs the Customer Steering Committee and manages the Reference Program for the Workforce teams and participates in Customer-led events, User Groups and Forums.

Gia has her Bachelors’ Degree in Business Management from California Coast University. Most recently, Gia served on the ANA vendor panel with a focus on Acuity and Workforce Optimization.

Prior to her career in the Healthcare sector, Gia held previous positions in Technology, beginning in 1986 with Digital Equipment/HP and IBM in their Business Office Information Systems (BOIS) Division, within Market Development and Sales Training.


Ajith Pai, PharmD, FACHE, has served as President of Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Cleburne since 2018.

In the role of president, Ajith oversees day to day operations, works to advance physician engagement and promote effective employee, governance, and community relations. Ajith is responsible for ensuring the achievement of the hospital’s goals for patient safety, clinical and non-clinical quality, operational performance and patient, physician, and employee engagement.

In Washington Monthly’s 2020 inaugural list of Top 20 Best Hospitals for America, Texas Health Cleburne ranked #18 based on patient outcomes, civic leadership, and value of care. Texas Health Cleburne is part of the non-profit health system Texas Health Resources (THR) based in North Texas and is annually recognized as a national leader for engagement and workplace culture. THR ranked #1 nationally in Fortune magazine’s Great Place to Work list for Health Care & Biopharma in 2018, 2019, and 2020.

Ajith began his career with Texas Health Resources, at Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital HEB in 1999 as a certified pharmacy technician. In 2011, he became the director of Pharmacy at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Kaufman where he oversaw the day to day operations and championed safe, quality-driven care through the implementation of best practices and improved clinical monitoring. In 2014, his leadership continued as he served as the professional and support services officer, administratively overseeing the non-nursing departments and working closely within the Texas Health Kaufman executive leadership team to meet system and entity goals.

Ajith received his Doctorate of Pharmacy (PharmD) from Texas Tech School of Pharmacy and a Master’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Texas at Dallas. Additionally, he is a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives (FACHE).

Ajith enjoys spending time with his family which includes his wife of 13 years, Myriam, their five-year-old daughter, Elyse, and their recently welcomed son Nikhil. He’s also an avid runner and has participated in more than 15 marathons throughout the country and remains involved in the community through memberships on various committees. Ajith is a member of the Texas Health Huguley Community Board, Texas Health Surgery Center Cleburne Board of Managers, Texas Health Supply Chain Services Board, and is a past Director of the City of Cleburne Chamber of Commerce. Additionally, Ajith is proud to serve as the 2020 chairperson of the ACHE Asian Healthcare Leaders Forum, is the current Chair of the ACHE North Texas chapter Advancement Committee, is an inaugural member of the UNTHSC MHA Executives in Residence initiative, is a 2019 Texas Hospital Association (THA) Leadership Fellow graduate, a THA HOSPAC Board member, and is a past graduate of Leadership North Texas.


Shawn Salter is currently the Chief Administrative Officer of CHRISTUS EMS & Flight For Life, a 501(c)3 charitable organization which serves the emergency healthcare and transportation needs of citizens and hospitals throughout northeast Texas. Mr. Salter has more than 35-years of healthcare experience as a Paramedic and Registered Nurse having previously served as a clinician with both rural and urban EMS systems, Surgical ICU Nurse and as a critical-care Flight Nurse. As an administrator, he has held the positions of EMS Executive Director of Llano County EMS, Chief Operating Officer and, later, CEO of San Antonio AirLIFE, and as Regional Vice-President with Air Methods Corporation. Shawn previously served two-terms as the Region IV Director with the Association of Air Medical Services (AAMS) where he served on their Executive Committee and as Chair of the Standards Committee. Shawn has been an active participant in local, regional, state and national organizations to improve the safety and delivery of emergency care during transport. He currently serves as the President of the Texas Association of Air Medical Services (TAAMS) and as an appointee of Texas Governor Greg Abbott on his Governor’s EMS & Trauma Advisory Council. Shawn is a native Texan and is married to his beautiful wife, Tiffany, and they are the proud parents of one daughter named Abigail.


Shelly Welch, MBA, BSN, RN, NEA-BC is the Chief Nursing Officer for CHRISTUS Mother Frances Hospital-Tyler, CHRISTUS Louis and Peaches Owens Heart Hospital, and CHRISTUS Mother Frances Hospital-South Tyler.

She has over 25 years of leadership and nursing experience with her prior position as Chief Clinical Officer of North Oaks Health System and Chief Nursing Officer at CHRISTUS St. Patrick Hospital. She has responsibility for nursing and clinical services, patient experience, professional development and accreditation across the health system for both acute and outpatient service areas.

Shelly received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing Degree from McNeese State University in Lake Charles, Louisiana. She received her Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Regis University in Denver, Colorado. She also holds a Nurse Executive Advanced-Board Certification.


Jim Wiederhold is the President and Founder of Wiederhold & Associates.

For the past 27 years, Jim has assisted over 1,800 Vice President, Senior Vice President and C-level executives to successfully transition to the next level with enhanced skills and behaviors. Working with so many executives over this span of years has afforded Jim the unique insight into how the industry has evolved and changed and how executives need to adapt in order to continue their success. That experience, coupled with his experience in a broad spectrum of industries, including banking, insurance, healthcare, retail and manufacturing, has helped Jim build a successful company.

Jim and his team of dedicated professionals provide customized programs designed with each client’s particular needs in mind. From career coaching, onboarding, network expansion, external and internal transition to Emotional Intelligence and Executive Coaching, with an emphasis on a partnership approach. The focus of Jim’s programs is to achieve balance between business and personal goals/desires as well as share honest and constructive feedback that so many leaders want but aren’t getting.

Jim has a B.A. in Economics from Colby College in Waterville, Maine and has done graduate work at Adelphia University. He has authored numerous articles on transition and is certified in the Hogan assessment as well as The Leadership Profile 360. Outside of work, Jim enjoys his family, staying and living healthy, and constantly learning on a personal and professional level. Jim believes that successful people are all in some level of transition leading to transformation all the time.

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