Published on June 03, 2022

Patient surveys highlight “excellent” Essentia Health providers, facilities

Each year, Essentia Health contracts with Professional Research Consultants (PRC) to randomly survey patients about their experiences in our hospitals and clinics. PRC uses results from these surveys to rank Essentia physicians, staff and facilities within its national database of health care organizations. The 2022 awards are based on patient surveys conducted throughout 2021.

The Excellence in Healthcare Awards recognize organizations and individuals who achieve excellence throughout the year by improving patient experiences, health care-employee management and/or physician alignment and engagement based on surveys of their patients.

In Essentia’s East Market, which encompasses Northeastern and Central Minnesota, as well as Northwest Wisconsin, nine providers received PRC’s Top Performer Award, meaning they scored at the 100th percentile for overall quality of care. Top Performers include:

  • Dr. Patricia Segler, OB/GYN, Essentia Health-Baxter Specialty Clinic
  • Jessica Hinkley, APRN, CNP, breast health, oncology, Essentia Health-St. Joseph’s Medical Center
  • Shana Bertin, PA-C, diabetes and endocrinology, Essentia Health-Duluth Clinic Second Street Building
  • Conrad Ross, PA-C, gastroenterology, Essentia Health-Duluth Clinic First Street Building
  • Dr. Michael Mollerus, cardiac electrophysiology, Essentia Health-St. Mary’s Medical Center
  • Lauren Carolan, APRN, CNP, neurology, Essentia Health-Duluth Clinic Third Street Building
  • Colleen Evans, DO, gynecologic oncology, Essentia Health-Duluth Clinic First Street Building
  • Dr. Ana Fernandez-Pokorny, rheumatology, Essentia Health-Duluth Clinic Third Street Building
  • Dr. Erin Grimsby, physiatry, Essentia Health-Duluth Clinic Third Street Building

In Essentia’s West Market, which encompasses Eastern North Dakota and Western Minnesota, five providers received PRC’s Top Performer Award, including:

  • Jana Sundeen, APRN, CNP, family medicine, Essentia Health St. Mary’s-Pelican Rapids Clinic
  • Dr. Stefanie Gefroh, OB/GYN, Essentia Health-32nd Avenue Clinic
  • Dr. Caitlin Pandolfo, OB/GYN, Essentia Health-32nd Avenue Clinic
  • Teresa Formo, APRN, CNP, family medicine, Essentia Health-Jamestown Clinic
  • Dr. Bangalore Vijayalakshmi, physiatry, Essentia Health-South University Clinic

Additional honors were awarded to the following in the East Market:

5-Star Award: Scoring in the top 10% (at or above the 90th percentile) of the PRC national client database for percentage of patients who rate the overall quality of care by the clinic/facility or unit/provider as “excellent.”

  • Jessica Nybakken, APRN, CNP, breast health, oncology, Essentia Health-St. Joseph’s Medical Center
  • Dr. Kathy Wimmer, family medicine, Essentia Health St. Joseph’s-Pillager Clinic
  • Dr. Anne Normand, orthopedic surgery, Essentia Health-Duluth Clinic Third Street Building
  • Jennifer Kober, APRN, CNP, cardiology, Essentia Health-Virginia Clinic
  • Dr. Jan Baldwin, family medicine, Essentia Health-Hibbing Clinic
  • Dr. Kalkidan Bishu, interventional cardiology, Essentia Health-St. Mary’s Medical Center
  • Mary Starkman, APRN, CNP, cardiology, Essentia Health-St. Mary’s Medical Center
  • Dr. Sara Lokstad, family medicine, Essentia Health St. Joseph’s-Crosslake Clinic
  • Dr. Thomas Heinitz, family medicine, Essentia Health-Proctor Clinic
  • Kelly Spray, APRN, CNP, family medicine, Essentia Health St. Joseph’s-Pequot Lakes Clinic
  • Christina Thell, APRN, CNP, general surgery, Essentia Health St. Joseph’s-Brainerd Clinic
  • Dr. Sarah Osborne, family medicine, Essentia Health St. Joseph’s-Brainerd Clinic
  • Dr. Beret Casey, diabetes and endocrinology, Essentia Health-Ashland Clinic
  • Dr. Daniel Nikcevich, hematology/oncology, Essentia Health-Duluth Clinic First Street Building
  • Dr. Luiz Fernando Leonavicius Guimaraes Franco, diabetes and endocrinology, Essentia Health-Duluth Clinic Second Street Building
  • Dr. Nicole Seacotte, OB/GYN, Essentia Health-Duluth Clinic First Street Building
  • Dr. Susan Ash, dermatology, Essentia Health-Duluth Clinic Third Street Building
  • Dr. Daniel Johnson, internal medicine, Essentia Health St. Joseph’s-Baxter Clinic
  • Dr. Kevin Riess, general surgery, Essentia Health-Virginia Clinic
  • Emily Opacich, APRN, CNP, sleep medicine, Essentia Health-Lakewalk Clinic
  • Dr. Kelly Greenleaf, OB/GYN, Essentia Health-Duluth Clinic First Street Building
  • Tasha Waage, APRN, CNP, family medicine, Essentia Health-Grand Rapids Clinic
  • Dr. Bradley Kuzel, orthopedic surgery, Essentia Health-Duluth Clinic Third Street Building
  • Erika Carrier, PA-C, internal medicine, Essentia Health-Ashland Clinic
  • Dr. Christopher Metz, orthopedic surgery, Essentia Health St. Joseph’s-Orthopedics Clinic
  • Brianne Sable, PA-C, internal medicine, Essentia Health-Ashland Clinic
  • Dr. Gary Kindt, pulmonary medicine, Essentia Health-Duluth Clinic Third Street Building
  • Dr. Ingrid Nisswandt-Larsen, family medicine, Essentia Health-Lakeside Clinic
  • Dr. Betsy Schwartz, family medicine, Essentia Health-Lakewalk Clinic
  • Margaret York-Jesme, APRN, CNP, family medicine, Essentia Health-Ely Clinic
  • Dr. Wade Lillegard, orthopedics, Essentia Health-Duluth Clinic Third Street Building
  • Dr. Robert McDonald, family medicine, Essentia Health-Lakeside Clinic
  • Christie Erickson, APRN, CNP, family medicine, Essentia Health-Hermantown Clinic
  • Dr. Jennifer Mahling-Stadum, family medicine, Essentia Health St. Joseph’s-Brainerd Clinic
  • Dr. James Conniff, family medicine, Essentia Health-Lakewalk Clinic
  • Annette Bartel, DPM, podiatric surgery, Essentia Health St. Joseph’s-Brainerd Clinic
  • Dr. Jeremiah Eisenschenk, hospitalist services and weight loss, Essentia Health St. Joseph’s-Brainerd Clinic
  • Erin Monahan, PA-C, dermatology, Essentia Health-Duluth Clinic Third Street Building
  • Dr. Janus Butcher, orthopedics, Essentia Health-Duluth Clinic Third Street Building
  • Andrew Bader, DO, family medicine, Essentia Health St. Joseph’s-Baxter Clinic
  • Kristin Lusian, DO, family medicine, Essentia Health-West Duluth Clinic
  • Dr. Andrew Chiu, cardiology, Essentia Health-St. Mary’s Medical Center
  • Dr. Danyelle Fenner, hospitalist services, Essentia Health-St. Mary’s Medical Center
  • Anne Skwira-Brown, APRN, CNP, Essentia Health-Duluth Clinic First Street Building
  • Dr. Heidi Malling, hospitalist services, Essentia Health-St. Joseph’s Medical Center

The following East Market facilities/teams also received a 5-Star Award in Overall Quality of Care:

  • Northwest Wisconsin Cancer Center, Infusion Center
  • Essentia Health-Duluth Clinic, Breast Center
  • Essentia Health-Duluth Clinic, radiation oncology
  • Essentia Health St. Joseph’s-Brainerd Clinic, outpatient radiology
  • Esko Fitness Center/Esko Physical Therapy
  • Essentia Health-Hibbing Clinic, outpatient therapy

Additional honors were awarded to the following in the West Market:

5-Star Award

  • Dr. Becky Vandeberg, optometry, Essentia Health-South University Clinic
  • Amanda Beehler, DO, dermatology, Essentia Health St. Mary’s-Detroit Lakes Clinic
  • Allison Klug, DC, chiropractic care, Essentia Health-South University Clinic
  • Dr. Prasad Sawardeker, orthopedic surgery, Essentia Health-32nd Avenue Clinic
  • Anna Thomas, APRN, CNP, family medicine, Essentia Health-52nd Avenue Clinic
  • Nicholas Frederiksen, APRN, CNP, neurology, Essentia Health-32nd Avenue Clinic
  • Dr. Duane Strand, internal medicine, Essentia Health-Wahpeton Clinic
  • Elisha Anderson, APRN, CNP, internal medicine, Essentia Health-Wahpeton Clinic
  • Shanna Hendrickson, APRN, CNP, family medicine, Essentia Health St. Mary’s-Detroit Lakes Clinic
  • Allen Hager, DC, chiropractic care, Essentia Health-South University Clinic
  • Jessica Lindblom, APRN, CNP, family medicine, Essentia Health St. Mary’s-Detroit Lakes Clinic
  • Dr. Zena Homan, OB/GYN, Essentia Health-32nd Avenue Clinic
  • Rachel Nelles, APRN, CNP, diabetes and endocrinology, Essentia Health-South University Clinic
  • Sarah Winter, PA-C, family medicine, Essentia Health St. Mary’s-Detroit Lakes Clinic
  • Gaurav Mehta, MBBS, family medicine, Essentia Health St. Mary’s-Detroit Lakes Clinic
  • Jamie Zink, PA-C, family medicine, Essentia Health-52nd Avenue Clinic
  • Dr. Gregory Sperle, family medicine, Essentia Health-Menahga Clinic
  • Nathan Schaefbauer, DC, chiropractic care, Essentia Health-Park Rapids Hwy 34 Clinic
  • Dr. Michele Thieman, family medicine, Essentia Health-Park Rapids Clinic
  • Anne Christensen, APRN, CNP, Essentia Health-Moorhead Clinic
  • Carmen Mittleider, APRN, CNP, family medicine, Essentia Health-Jamestown Clinic
  • Dr. Archana Rajender, urology, Essentia Health-32nd Avenue Clinic
  • Dr. Terry Benson, hospitalist services, Essentia Health-32nd Avenue Clinic

The following West Market facilities/teams also received a 5-Star Award in Overall Quality of Care:

  • Essentia Health-32nd Avenue Clinic, outpatient radiology
  • Essentia Health-Park Rapids Clinic, infusion services
  • Essentia Health St. Mary’s-Detroit Lakes Clinic, infusion services
  • Essentia Health-Ada, outpatient therapy

Additionally, 92 providers and six facilities/teams across Essentia received a 4-Star Award in Overall Quality of Care, meaning they scored in the top 25% (at or above the 75th percentile).