Health Notes: Texas Health Aetna adds to executive team

Signs inside and outside Plaza Medical Center of Fort Worth are being changed to the new name of Medical City Fort Worth. The renaming is part of a unifying name change for Medical City Healthcare’s 13 North Texas hospitals and seven off-campus hospital ERs that was announced in November. In addition, ER at Burleson will now be known as Medical City ER Burleson, a department of Medical City Fort Worth.

Texas Health Aetna, the partnership between Texas Health Resources and Aetna, has added DeWayne Wilson as chief financial officer and Genevieve Caruncho-Simpson as chief operations officer.

“Texas Health Aetna is dedicated to providing local and personal care to the Dallas-Fort Worth community,” said CEO Jeff Cook. “We are determined to lower the cost of health insurance in the Metroplex, while providing a unique solution of specialized care options. DeWayne and Genevieve will help us achieve these goals as we work to roll out the new health care plan this year.”

With more than 24 years in health care management, Wilson will manage financial performance and lead efforts to build and manage the network of health care providers. Most recently, he was senior finance director for managed care and value-based reimbursement for Ascension Health. He received his bachelor’s degree in business administration from James Madison University.

Caruncho-Simpson has more than 15 years of experience working with health care providers and payer/insurance organizations across the globe. As COO, she will provide management and oversight of strategic and operational plans, member services and clinical programs, strategic partnerships and initiatives, as well as outsourced services. She has held a variety of strategic, operational and consulting positions at Ascension Health, Humana, PwC, New York Presbyterian Hospital and University of Washington Medicine. She received a master’s degree in health policy and management from New York University and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Washington.

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“Through Texas Health Aetna, we have the opportunity to deliver a revolutionary health care plan to North Texas employers and consumers,” said Caruncho-Simpson. “This partnership allows us to tailor health care needs at a local level, which will result in connected care across the network and an enhanced member experience.”

Texas Health Aetna is a joint venture between Texas Health Resources and Aetna, combining the health system’s local providers and delivery systems with the insurance provider’s health plan experience, care management and analytical insights and health insurance technology.

The Texas Health Aetna network also includes UT Southwestern Medical Center, Methodist Health System, Children’s Health, Cook Children’s and thousands of local doctors.


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Cara Guthrie-Chu, a neuroscience acute nurse practitioner at Medical City Fort Worth, recently received the Clinical Excellence Award for overall program and onsite clinical performance in the NETSMART–AP fellowship program. The primary aim of NETSMART–AP is to improve treatment outcomes for acute stroke patients by increasing the number of advanced practice nurses and physician assistants working in expanded roles to support services for those patients.

The award was presented at a fellowship graduation dinner after the International Stroke Nursing Conference in Houston.

As a fellowship-trained, board-certified, advanced practice provider at Medical City Fort Worth, Guthrie-Chu specializes in the comprehensive care and management of acutely and critically ill patients with stroke, neurovascular abnormalities and need for endovascular intervention. In addition, she sees neurosurgical patients with traumatic brain hemorrhages, brain tumors and spine injury or disease.

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Guthrie-Chu has been employed by Medical City Fort Worth since 2013, working in collaboration with the Texas Stroke Institute and Neurosurgical Associates of North Texas.



Garden Terrace of Fort Worth has hired a new executive director, Kirk Landman. He recently was executive director at Victoria Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Victoria. Before that he worked for Whispering Oaks Rehabilitation and Nursing in Cuero. He has more than 10 years of experience in senior care and has previous careers as a high school principal and a policeman.

“I like sitting down and talking to the residents, just to hear their stories,” said Landman.

Landman, a Fort Worth native, has a master’s degree in administration and supervision and a bachelor’s degree in biology and kinesiology. He has three children and lives in Krum.

Garden Terrace of Fort Worth, located at 7500 Oakmont Blvd., is one of eight skilled nursing and rehabilitation facilities in Texas operated or managed by Life Care Centers of America.

Founded in 1976, Life Care is a nationwide health care company with headquarters in Cleveland, Tennessee. It operates or manages more than 200 nursing, post-acute and Alzheimer’s centers in 28 states.



Fort Worth-based Sagora Senior Living, one of the nation’s top 50 senior housing operators, has acquired The Orchard Assisted Living & Memory Care in Katy, west of Houston.

The Orchard is Sagora’s first community in Katy and its 18th in Texas. It operates 28 Sagora Senior Living communities across the nation.

Sagora Senior Living said in a news release that it is actively redefining assisted living with a “resident first” philosophy that guides all aspects of the program designs, amenities and socially active cultures in its retirement communities.


Ken Simpson has joined the MedStar executive team as chief operations officer, responsible for field and communications center operations, support services, business intelligence, information technology and risk and safety.

Simpson previously was with the Georgia operations of American Medical Response, where he was responsible for high performance ambulance service operations for 20 communities in the Metro Atlanta area. He has an extensive background in emergency medical services, beginning as an EMT in South Carolina while a student at Clemson University. Simpson also earned a law degree from the University of Memphis in Tennessee.



Latana Jackson-Woods of Cedar Hill has been reappointed to the Texas Board of Respiratory Care by Gov. Greg Abbot for a term set to expire Feb. 1, 2023. The board advises the Texas Medical Board, adopts rules to establish the certification and permitting program for respiratory therapists and sets minimum qualifications for respiratory care practitioners, standards of conduct and grounds for disciplinary actions.

Jackson-Woods is director of cardiopulmonary, EEG and non-invasive cardiology at Baylor Scott & White Medical Center Irving. She volunteers with the Outreach Ministry at Antioch Baptist Church of Dallas and is a member of the American Association for Respiratory Care and the Texas Society of Respiratory Care. She has a bachelor’s degree in respiratory care from Texas State University and an MBA from the University of Phoenix.



For the third year in a row, Texas Health Resources has ranked No. 1 on the Fortune and Great Place to Work list of Best Workplaces in Health Care.

“This ranking is especially meaningful because it’s based on employee surveys,” said Barclay Berdan, CEO of Texas Health. “It takes great commitment from the bottom to the top to make a great place to work, and we are constantly improving ourselves as an organization. We are truly honored to be among this elite group of nationally leading companies.”

Fortune 100 partners with Great Place to Work to conduct employee surveys to identify top companies throughout the nation.