In the Know: The Latest Honors and Recognitions at Area Healthcare Facilities


Watson Clinic

Some talented new practitioners have joined the expert staff at Watson Clinic recently. Three began in July. Hassan Hasanein, MD, earned his medical degree from the University of Damascus School of Medicine in Damascus, Syria, and is now a member of the Oncology-Hematology team at Watson Clinic Cancer & Research Center in Lakeland. Another new addition to the Oncology-Hematology department is registered nurse practitioner Amanda Anderson, MSN, APRN. She is a graduate of Keiser University and Polk State College in Lakeland, and Tampa’s University of Tampa, and will be working alongside Oncologist-Hematologist Shalini Mulaparthi, MD. Traci Vicari, MS, MPH, APRN, graduate of University of South Florida in Tampa, will be working with Internal Medicine specialists Leslie Coello Echeverry, MD, and Cindy Kelly, DO, at Watson Clinic Plant City. 

In August, Watson Clinic welcomed another four doctors. Ayushman Sharma, M.D., has joined the Radiology department at Watson Clinic Main in Lakeland. Sharma studied at Brown University in Rhode Island, University of South Florida in Tampa, and Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix, Arizona. Kyra Munzenmaier, M.D., is a Psychiatry specialist who attended the University of Miami, the University of South Florida Morsani College of Medicine, and performed her residency at St. Luke’s University Health Network in Pennsylvania. She is certified in Perinatal Mental Health and will be accepting appointments through Watson Clinic Highlands in Lakeland. Spencer Motley, M.D., will be working in the Rheumatology department at Watson Clinic Main in Lakeland. Motley graduated from the University of Texas Medical Branch and specializes in the treatment of connective tissue, diseases, inflammatory arthritis, and vasculitis. Finally, Neal Agee, M.D., FACS, is a board-certified specialist in General Surgery and Surgical Oncology with over 15 years of experience after earning his degree from the Medical University of Silesia in Katowice, Poland. 

Watson Clinic proudly offers exceptional medical care to every patient and has been recognized for those consistent efforts by the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) with Certificates of Recognition as a Patient-Centered Medical Home. Six Watson Clinic locations received recognition: Watson Clinic Main, South, Highlands, North Pediatrics, Bartow, and Plant City. The NCQA Patient Centered Medical Home program evaluates the use of systematic, patient-centered, coordinated care that supports patient involvement, communication, and access. Watson Clinic’s primary care and pediatric departments had to meet or exceed the program’s strict standards to achieve the prestigious award.


AdventHealth Orlando has also been recognized for providing outstanding patient care in a number of specialties. This is the 13th consecutive year that AdventHealth Orlando has been named the No. 1 hospital in Metro Orlando by U.S. News & World Report’s 2023-2024 Best Hospitals listing. Four of the hospital’s medical programs were ranked among the nation’s best: cancer, diabetes and endocrinology, neurology and neurosurgery, and obstetrics and gynecology. Six additional departments were designated as “high performing:” cardiology and cardiovascular surgery, gastroenterology and GI surgery, geriatrics, orthopedics, pulmonology and lung surgery, and urology. U.S. News looked at over 4,500 hospitals nationwide, focusing on 15 specialties and 21 procedures and conditions. Of those, only 12 percent received “Best Hospitals” ratings. AdventHealth Daytona Beach was ranked No. 1 for the Deltona-Daytona Beach metro area for the third year in a row. 

AdventHealth University is expanding its offerings for those seeking to continue their professional education with 20 new certificates focusing on high-demand health care, information technology, and project management fields. These and other certificates offered by the institution are issued through such authoritative bodies as the American Medical Certification Association and the National Academy of Sports Medicine. Courses are online and self-paced, running from 12 to 33 weeks in length, with a tuition cost ranging from $2,000 to $14,000 which includes any necessary e-books plus the certification exams. To learn more or register for on of the undergraduate, graduate, or online degree programs, please visit

In addition to the new programs being offered, AdventHealth University is also welcoming a new dean of nursing. Laura J. Fero, Ph.D., MSN, RN joins the AdventHealth staff after most recently serving as dean of nursing at St. Catherine University in St. Paul, Minnesota. Prior to that, she was the founding dean of Nursing and Health Sciences and director of nursing at Lees-McRae College in North Carolina. Fero will lead the undergraduate and graduate nursing programs as they strive to quintuple nursing student enrollment at AdventHealth University over the next 10 years in an effort to help alleviate the nation’s current shortage of qualified nurses.

BayCare Health System

BayCare’s Winter Haven Hospital (WHH) and Winter Haven Women’s Hospital (WHWH) has honored 36 of their fantastic nurses with a special distinction as Winter Haven Hospital’s 2023 Unit Nurses of the Year. The nominees were chosen by their peers from every patient care unit based on their embodiment of the BayCare values of trust, respect, dignity, responsibility, and excellence. From this group, four nurses were further elevated by the Professional Practice Council of staff nurses as Nurses of Excellence. Those nurses are Joshua Bonney, RN, Cardiac Medical; Madeleine Heath, BSN, RN, Interventional Radiology; Gail Snipes, RN, Surgical Services/Operating Room; and Leticia Torres-Ayala, BSN, RN, WHWH Labor and Delivery. Congratulations to all of the nurses who were recognized for their outstanding service!

Bartow Regional Medical Center (BRMC) also honored seven Unit Nurses of the Year, with Sandra Swain from the Imaging/Radiology Department being named as the 2023 Nurse of Excellence for the hospital. Swain has been with BRMC for 15 years and was instrumental during the hospital 2016 transition to a BayCare facility. She is highly revered by her colleagues, and her personal mission is to treat all of her patients and coworkers with the same level of care, respect, compassion, and patience that should gives to her own family.

The Unit Nurses of the Year for Bartow Regional Medical Center are:

• Alvaro Garcia, Surgical Services

• Marchel Fairchild, Acute Care Unit

• Peggy Wells, Cardiovascular Telemetry (PCU and PSU)

• Shannon Hernandez, Emergency Department

• Yesenia Lozano, Intensive Care Unit

• Sandra Swain, Imaging/Radiology

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