Christine MacDonell of CARF Int’l receives National Leadership Excellence Award, and Dr. Felice L. Loverso of Casa Colina Hospital receives Edward A. Eckenhoff Memorial Award.
Left: Christine MacDonell, Right: Dr. Felice L. Loverso
(WASHINGTON – October 21, 2019) – The American Medical Rehabilitation Providers Association (AMRPA) announced the recipients of two of its prestigious awards at its 2019 Fall Educational Conference & Expo last week in San Diego. Christine MacDonell, managing director of medical rehabilitation and international aging services/medical rehabilitation at the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) International, received the AMRPA National Leadership Excellence Award, and Dr. Felice L. Loverso, CEO and president of Casa Colina Hospital and Centers for Healthcare, received the Edward A. Eckenhoff Memorial Award.
The AMRPA National Leadership Excellence Award confers association-wide recognition on an individual who has exemplified outstanding service and made significant contributions to the field of medical rehabilitation. This year’s recipient, Christine MacDonell, exemplifies leadership, integrity, vision, dedication and excellence in transformative leadership, professional experience, life-long service, advocacy at the state and national levels, mentorship of future leaders, improved patient outcomes and quality of patient care, research and critical analysis, and education and advancement of the field.
MacDonell began her diverse career in the health care industry as an occupational therapist after graduating from the University of Southern California. While still in California, she moved into a health care administration role and was responsible for developing and overseeing a full continuum of post-acute care. In 1991, she came to CARF, and it is through her efforts since then that organization’s medical rehabilitation and accreditation of programs and services have expanded globally, ensuring quality of programs, services and outcomes for individuals with disabilities.
The Edward A. Eckenhoff Memorial Award and Lecture was established in 2018 to honor one of the association’s founding fathers and a visionary leader in the rehabilitation field. This year's nominee for the award and lecture is Dr. Felice L. Loverso, an AMRPA member who has demonstrated exemplary skills in the areas of advocacy, public policy, clinical excellence, education, and research and has contributed invaluable leadership and distinguished service to the field of medical rehabilitation.
A dedicated contributor to association activities, Loverso is a past Chairman of the AMRPA Board of Directors and has been the CEO and president of Casa Colina Hospital and Centers for Healthcare since 1998. In that time, he successfully refocused Casa Colina back to its core business of acute, hospital-based rehabilitation and spearheaded the rebuilding of its 20-acre campus, anchored by a state-of-the-art hospital. Under Loverso’s leadership, Casa Colina expanded to a robust continuum of specialized medical and rehabilitative care, with 219 beds dedicated to medical-surgical and intensive care, acute rehabilitation, residential rehabilitation and long-term residential care. Loverso also expanded outpatient services to include physician clinics and diagnostic imaging, and he developed key management relationships for rehabilitation services with other community hospitals.
AMRPA hosts two conferences a year, one in the fall and one in the spring. Winners of its various awards are announced at both. For information on the upcoming Spring Conference and Congressional Fly-In taking place next year, March 22-24, in Washington, DC, click here.