Councils - Nursing, Health Science, and Allied Health

Scientific Council on Nursing, Health Science & Allied Health


The ISHLT Nursing, Health Science and Allied Health Council mission is to enhance the quality of life and care of patients, families and caregivers impacted by advanced heart or lung disease, transplantation, and/or mechanical support. We will achieve this through research, education, clinical excellence and multidisciplinary collaboration.  The NHSAH Council will encourage and stimulate thinking, while supporting evidence-based research to promote new therapeutic strategies.


Council membership is open to all ISHLT members. Joining is easy. Simply login to the ISHLT Members Only Website where you can update your membership profile and join any of the 12 Scientific Councils.

Wednesday, April 11, 2018, 7:15-8:15 AM
Room: Uranie/Caliope
Location: Acropolis Congrès Centre, Nice, France
ISHLT 38th Annual Meeting and Scientific Sessions


Issues focusing on Nursing, Health Science & Allied Health:

September 2017
January 2017
October 2016
January 2016
December 2015
September 2015
February 2015
November 2014
June 2014: NHSAH Council Report 2013-2014
January 2014
September 2013
May 2013: NHSAH Council Report - Year in Review
January 2013
January 2012

(Parentheses after name indicates year rotating off Board)

Pamela Combs, PhD, RN (2022)
University of Chicago
Chicago, IL, USA

Dr. Pamela Combs is a Research Coordinator at the University of Chicago, Cardiothoracic Surgery. She began her career as an ICU nurse in Joliet, Illinois and has worked in various roles focused on cardiology from Assistant Nursing Professor to Director of a Heart Failure/VAD program. She earned her Masters in Nursing Education at Bellarmine University and PhD in Nursing Research at the University of Louisville. She serves on the board of ASAIO and spearheads the Social Worker Workforce for the International Consortium for Clinicians (ICCAC). Pam mentors young scientists interested in the file of heart failure, transplants, and VADs.

Caron Burch RN, MSN, FNP, CCTC (2024)
University of California, San Francisco
San Francisco, CA, USA

Caron is presently Manager of the Pediatric Heart Failure and Heart Transplant Program at UCSF Benioff Childrenís Hospital in San Francisco. Since 2011, Caron has continued to work for The Joint Commission as a Reviewer for the Disease Specific Care - Ventricular Assist Device Destination Therapy Certification Program.  Caron has worked at Stanford Health Care as Nurse Manager of the Heart-Lung and Lung Transplant Program.  Previous to February 2013, Caron worked at UCLA Ronald Reagan Medical Center in Los Angeles, California and prior to her departure was Nurse Manager for the Adult and Pediatric Heart and Lung Transplant and Mechanical Circulatory Support Programs. She was responsible for the administrative and regulatory management over all programs while also maintaining an active clinical transplant coordinator role within the pediatric heart transplant program. Over the 19 years while at UCLA she held various roles within the transplant program, Cardiothoracic Surgery Department and the UCLA School of Nursing as an ACNP Program Lecturer.

Kevin Carney, MSN, CRNP, CCTC (2020)
Temple University
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA

Kevin is a Nurse Practitioner and Manager with The Department of Pulmonary Medicine and Thoracic Surgery at Temple University Hospital.  He has multiple publications in the fields of Nursing, Lung Transplant and Infectious Disease, and has served on numerous committees with the American Board for Transplant Certification, United Network for Organ Sharing and Centers for Disease Control.

Kathleen L. Grady, PhD, RN, FAAN (2019)
Northwestern University
Chicago, IL, USA

Bio coming soon...

Angela W. Velleca, RN, BSN, CCTC (2021)
Cedars Sinai Heart Institute
Los Angeles, CA, USA

Angie has been part of the transplant nursing management team with the Cedars-Sinai Smidt Heart Institute for the last 8 years. She has over 23 years of experience in Heart-Lung Transplant Coordination. Angie received her bachelor of science in nursing from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill and began her training in the Cardiothoracic Surgical ICU at Duke University. She continued her career in Cardiothoracic Surgery ICU at UCLA working with adult as well as pediatric congenital heart disease populations eventually moving into the role of transplant coordinator in 1995. Currently, Angie is responsible for program and protocol development and participation in the committees associated with such development which include pre-transplant, in-hospital, outpatient, and donor management. She is highly involved in the innovative research development for heart transplant patients.† She has been co-author of numerous papers that have been presented at the International Society of Heart and Lung Transplantation or published in the Journal of Heart and Lung Transplantation. Angie is also co-author of the heart transplant chapter of the "Core Curriculum for Transplant Nurses" published in 2017.

Louise M. Fuller, PT
Alfred Hospital
Melbourne, AUSTRALIA

Louise Fuller is a senior clinical physiotherapist working in transplant services at The Alfred Hospital in Melbourne, Australia. She is in charge of the rehabilitation gym program for heart and lung transplant recipients and co-ordinates the exercise rehabilitation for VAD patients. She also works in the outpatient clinics providing physiotherapy services for both recent and long term heart and lung recipients.  Currently, she is a PhD candidate researching rehabilitation following lung transplantation.  Louise has presented her research at local, national and international forums.

Colleen Juricek (2020)
University of Chicago Medical Center
Chicago, IL, USA

Colleen Juricek is a Ventricular Assist Device Coordinator at University of Chicago since 2012, Lead Coordinator since 2013. She received her Bachelorís Degree in 2009 from University of Saint Francis and MSN in Education in 2012 from Olivet University. Her career began as a CTICU nurse at Loyola University followed by 2 years as a Critical Care Educator at Presence St. Joes hospital in Joliet, Il before moving into the VAD coordinator role at the University of Chicago.

Kirsten Diegel, RD, LDN (2020)
Temple University Hospital
Philadelphia, PA, USA

Kirsten is a Clinical Dietitian at Temple University Hospital and has worked with the lung transplant team since her starting at Temple 5 years ago. She completed her undergraduate degree in dietetics at University of Delaware, her dietetic internship through ARAMARK and is a few credits away from completing a Masterís of Science in Nutrition through the College of Saint Elizabeth. Kirsten recently passed her Certified Nutrition Support Clinician Exam.

Jill Giordano, MA, MSW, LCSW (2020)
Newark Beth Israel Medical Center
Newark, NJ, USA

Jill I. Giordano, MA, MSW, LCSW, is the Lead Transplant Social Worker at Newark Beth Israel Medical Centerís Heart Failure Treatment and Transplant Program. She holds a BA in Psychology from the University of Tennessee, an MA in Womenís and Gender Studies from Roosevelt University as well as an MSW from Fordham University.† She has spent the last 7 years of her career focusing in the area of advanced heart failure.

Monica Horn, RN, CCRN, CCTC (2020)
Children's Hospital Los Angeles
Los Angeles, CA, USA

Monica Horn is a Heart Transplant/VAD/PH Coordinator II, Lead at Childrenís Hospital Los Angeles. Previously a pediatric critical care RN, she became a cardiothoracic transplant coordinator in 1994, working with lung/heart-lung/lobar lung transplant,  heart transplant, pulmonary hypertension and ventricular assist device patients while participating in multiple research publications regarding these populations throughout this time. Recent interests have included multidisciplinary collaboration in care of pediatric ventricular assist device patients and patients referred for heart transplantation who have had multiple previous palliative congenital heart surgeries.

Edith Boyes, MSN, FNP-BC, CHFN (2020)
Loyola University Medical Center
Chicago, IL, USA

Edith Boyes is an Advanced Heart Failure and Transplant Nurse Practitioner at Loyola University Medical Center in Maywood, Illinois. She received her BSN and MSN-FNP from Loyola University Chicago in 2010 and 2016, respectively. Her clinical specialty includes Advanced Heart Failure, Cardiac Transplantation, and Mechanical Circulatory Support. Edith previously worked as a VAD Coordinator for 4 years prior to becoming a nurse practitioner. Her research interests include VAD patient mortality and readmission.

Colleen K McIlvennan (2019)
University of Colorado
Denver, CO, USA

Colleen McIlvennan is an Assistant Professor of Medicine in the Division of Cardiology at the University of Colorado. She currently splits her time between clinical duties as the Lead Nurse Practitioner in the Section of Advanced Heart and Transplantation and research activities within the Adult and Child Consortium for Outcomes Research and Delivery Science. Dr. McIlvennan received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree at Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and then completed her Master of Science Ė Adult Nurse Practitioner and Doctor of Nursing Practice degrees at the University of Colorado. Her research interests include patients with left ventricular assist devices and their caregivers.

Jennifer A. Beckman, MSN-FNP, RN, CHFN (2019)
University of Washington
Seattle, WA, USA

Jennifer Beckman MSN, ARNP, CHFN, is a Nurse Practitioner with the Advanced heart failure, MCS and Cardiac Transplantation program at University of Washington Medical Center, in Seattle, Washington, where she also holds a faculty appointment as a teaching associate. Her clinical specialty is Mechanical Circulatory Support, Advanced Heart Failure and Cardiac Transplantation. Jennifer is also a Clinical Assistant Professor at Marquette University in Milwaukee, precepting physician assistant students. She completed her Masters of Science in Nursing degree and Family Nurse Practitioner training at Alverno College in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and is certified by the American Association of Heart Failure Nurses. She currently co-chairs the Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner Council and sits on the Nurse Executive Council at UWMC. Jennifer has served on the Board of Directors for the International Consortium of Circulatory Assistant Clinicians and also served a Presidential term. Her research interests include VAD patient outcomes optimization.

Jodie Lantz, CNS (2020)
Children's Health
Richardson, TX, USA

Jodie is a Clinical Nurse Specialist at Childrenís Health Dallas, Texas. She began her work in the pediatric cardiac ICU, then after a few years of travel nursing, found herself back in Dallas and worked as the clinical educator for the cardiac ICU while she finished graduate school. She completed both her Bachelors in Nursing and Masters in Nursing at Texas Christian University, and shortly after graduation with her masters, became the VAD Clinical Nurse Specialist at Childrenís Health Dallas. She helped develop the Pediatric Task Force within the International Consortium of Circulatory Assist Clinicians (ICCAC), and is now the current ICCAC President.

Rachel M Crackett, MSc (2019)
Freeman Hospital
Newcastle Upon Tyne, UNITED KINGDOM

Rachel Crackett RGN, MSc, NP has been a  Nurse Specialist in the Northern Pulmonary Vascular Unit at Freeman Hospital in Newcastle for over 14 years.  She has worked within the cardiothoracic department at Freeman for over 20 years with experience in surgery, medicine, transplantation and research. During this time she completed a Masterís degree in Nursing Science (Research Methods) and the Nursing Practitioner RCN Award. She has been integral in the development of the pulmonary hypertension service both locally and nationally and currently represents the northern senate with the National Commissioning Reference Group which advises on national policy. Rachel has presented and had abstracts accepted at local, national and international meetings.

Nicole Davis, BSN, MPH, CCTC (2020)
Tampa General Hospital
Tampa, FL, USA

Nicole Davis has been a lung transplant coordinator at Tampa General Hospital for the past 3 years. Prior to that she worked as a transplant nurse clinician for 5 years. She received her BSN and MPH from East Carolina University. Her focus is currently on process improvement within the pre and post lung transplant clinics at Tampa General Hospital.

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