Agents of Change: NOVO's Workers' Compensation Conference

March 31, 2017


Former FBI intelligence operative Eric O'Neill kicked off NOVO's 2017 conference.

NOVO Health's 10th annual Worker’s Compensation Conference was held at Bridgewood Conference Center in Neenah on March 16, 2017. 

The unique all-day learning event, specifically geared to nurses, case managers, HR administrators, claims adjusters, and healthcare professionals, gathered accomplished professionals to analyze current topics in the Workers’ Compensation industry. 

Led by NOVO Health Chief Executive Officer Curt Kubiak and his team, the conference provided the 125 attendees an exceptional opportunity to engage with leaders in a variety of healthcare fields as well as to learn about cost-saving innovations developed by NOVO Health.

NOVO Health represents a group of nine independent single specialty practices that offer healthcare solutions to self-insured businesses and organizations.

“NOVO Health represents independent physicians who have come together for the purpose of reducing healthcare costs,” said Kubiak, who is also CEO of the Orthopedic & Sports Institute of the Fox Valley, one of the founding members of NOVO Health. 

In addition to cost-saving workforce health designs that include Direct Contracting and Onsite Physical Therapy Services, NOVO announced the development of Bundled Pricing for Workers’ Compensation for 2017, a first for the state of Wisconsin.

Kubiak called it a game-changer. 

“From the employer’s perspective, bundled pricing for Workers’ Compensation provides a predictive cost for these cases,” said Kubiak. “Organizations can then set reserves for these costs with confidence.”

This year's spy-themed event was entitled "Agents of Change" and featured keynote speaker Eric O'Neill, a former FBI counter-terrorism and counterintelligence operative. Mr. O’Neill helped capture the most notorious spy in U.S. history, a story chronicled in the 2007 film Breach.

Mr. O’Neill was followed by another nationally known figure, guest speaker Spencer Nam, a Senior Research Fellow at the Clayton Christensen Institute. Mr. Nam’s research at the Institute focuses on disruptive innovation in the healthcare industry.

At the beginning of his presentation, Nam admitted it was a challenge to follow a former spy who regaled the group with tales of danger and espionage. It also didn’t help that O’Neill played a clip from a Hollywood movie made about him.  

Minus the espionage, the national healthcare landscape has its own set of dangers. Nam recognized the importance of NOVO’s twin designs of making health care more affordable and accessible.

“One of the reasons I accepted this invitation is that what’s happening here in Wisconsin might be the future of America’s health care,” Nam said.

The keynote addresses were followed by an interactive Q & A with local and regional healthcare experts. The following individuals comprised this year’s power panel:

Brian Harrison, MD. Dr. Harrison is a Certified Independent Medical Examiner and has treated work injury cases for 24 years. His independent solo practice, Authentic Occupational Medicine, focuses on specialty consulting.

Randall Johnson, MD. Dr. Johnson is a neurosurgeon with Neuroscience Group. He focuses on the treatment of illnesses involving the brain, spine and peripheral nerves and has extensive surgical and nonsurgical training and experience. 

James O’Malley, Esq. Mr. O’Malley is the Director of the Bureau of Legal Services for the Wisconsin Worker’s Compensation Division and has served in this capacity since 2001. Mr. O’Malley was previously employed as an Administrative Law Judge. 

Connon Piencikowski, DC. Dr. Piencikowski, owner of Bayside Chiropractic, provides onsite and near site chiropractic services at private industrial locations and as well as county and school employer sites throughout Wisconsin. 

Chelsie Springstead, Esq. Ms. Springstead is a partner with the law firm of Lindner & Marsack, S.C.  Her practice is focused on defending Worker’s Compensation claims for the insurance industry and self-insured employers.

Bobby Yun, MD. Dr. Yun is founder and president of Urgent Care Physicians, Ltd in Appleton & Oshkosh, the only urgent care clinics in the area to be staffed at all times by physicians. 

Afternoon breakout sessions allowed more time to focus on specific topics of interest. The 2017 conference presenters included:

Tony Brecunier. Mr. Brecunier is Vice President of Workers’ Compensation Claims at SECURA Insurance Company, where he has managed the Workers’ Compensation Claim Department for the last 9 years. 

Jean Darling, PT. Ms. Darling is vice president of Advanced Physical Therapy & Sports Medicine. She received her Physical Therapy degree from the University of Wisconsin in 1989. She is also a certified Group Fitness Instructor, Personal Trainer and Certified Pilates Instructor. 

David DeWitt, MD. Dr. DeWitt is a board-certified, fellowship-trained orthopedic spine surgeon with NeuroSpine Center of Wisconsin. He specializes in degenerative and traumatic disorders of the cervical, thoracic and lumbar spine. 

Christine Dudzinski. Ms. Dudzinski is the Health Services Manager for Oshkosh Defense. She joined Oshkosh Defense in 2010 and has held positions of Health Services Coordinator and Claims Manager before being promoted to Health Services Manager. 

Timothy Mologne, MD. Dr. Mologne is a board-certified orthopedic surgeon with the Sports Medicine Center in Appleton. An expert in shoulder and knee surgery, he is fellowship trained in sports medicine and arthroscopy. 

Connon Piencikowski, DC. In addition to earning degrees in Chiropractic and Athletic Training, Mr. Piencikowsi is also a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist, a Corrective Exercise Specialist, and a Certified Ergonomic Assessment Specialist. 

Rob Worth, PT. In 1998 Mr. Worth co-founded Advanced Physical Therapy & Sports Medicine. Advanced PT was recognized in 2013 as the top private practice in the nation by the American Physical Therapy Association.

Now in its second decade, the conference continues to provide information and strategies that allow participants to make cost-effective, patient-centered healthcare decisions.  

For more information about NOVO Health and the 2018 conference, please contact Patti Schaetz at 920.560.1013 or at [email protected].