Embodying the Best of Montefiore
Montefiore nurses are integral members of the interdisciplinary patient care team and are recognized for their unique, binding role. Partners in every sense of the word, our nurses work closely and collegially with physicians and other professionals to maximize outcomes and steer our patients to a healthy, productive future.
The leaders of Montefiore Nursing reflect the institution’s unwavering dedication to the highest caliber of clinical care and proactive, positive community involvement. They believe that nursing here epitomizes a comprehensive, multidisciplinary commitment to the highest standards of professional practice, education and research.
Providing a Clear Path to Excellence
Montefiore’s management team leads by example. They are accessible, inspirational and forward-thinking—and are focused on transforming care. In doing so, our leaders work closely with nursing leadership to articulate best practices and provide a clear path to excellence. In turn, nurses are rewarded for the contributions they make to advance their individual areas of expertise, as well as the profession as a whole.
Continually Advancing Our Nurses and Profession
Collectively, our nursing leaders have practiced throughout the world of medicine—from pediatrics to cardiology, oncology, emergency medicine, surgery and critical care. Our nursing leaders work closely with their staff, motivating them to constantly raise the bar for daily patient care. As such, they are vital to implementing Montefiore’s strategic vision and consolidating our position as a premier academic medical center.
Maureen Scanlan, MSN, RN-BC
Vice President of Nursing and Patient Care Services
Montefiore Health System
Maureen Scanlan, MSN, RN, NEA-BC, is a transformative, collaborative leader who unites nurses, physicians, administrators and clinicians to elevate the quality of patient care. As Vice President of Nursing and Patient Care Services for Montefiore Health System, one of the nation's most comprehensive, integrated health systems providing compassionate, coordinated care to residents of the Bronx and Westchester and Rockland Counties, Ms. Scanlan provides strategic oversight of nursing across the organization.
With a background in nursing informatics, she has implemented various data-driven initiatives to transform Montefiore's patient care. Among her many accomplishments is revision of a three-year nursing strategic plan for nursing services to implement strategies in alignment with Montefiore's goals. She also created nursing shared governance and collaborative practice structure models to support Montefiore's patient-centered care delivery model.
Ms. Scanlan has a strong record of developing research and implementing and evidence-based practice. In addition to initiating Montefiore's Nursing Research Symposium in 2011, she has launched and led programs to reduce adverse clinical outcomes, including implementing an evidence-based falls reduction initiative called TIPS (Tailored Interventions for Patient Safety). Prior to TIPS implementation in 2013, Montefiore's fall rate was 2.39, whereas the current rate is 1.65, an overall reduction of 32.1 percent. This practice is now utilized in five Montefiore hospitals. Ms. Scanlan also frequently delivers professional presentations on nursing best practices, and she co-authored an article, "Pilot Testing Fall TIPS (Tailoring Interventions for Patient Safety): A Patient-Centered Fall Prevention Toolkit," that was published in The Joint Commission Journal on Quality and Patient Safety 2017 (June 2017).
Catherine Cahill, RN-BC, MS
Director of Clinical Services, Children’s Hospital and Dialysis Service
Catherine Cahill began her nursing practice at Montefiore in 1972, specializing in pediatrics and ambulatory care nursing. As an associate of the Montefiore Einstein Center for Bioethics, she is a member of the Bioethics Committee and a bioethics clinical consultant, and she participates in nursing and medical education.
Ms. Cahill received a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the City University of New York Lehman College and a Master of Science in Health Care Adminstration from Iona College. She also obtained a postgraduate certificate in Bioethics and Medical Humanities from Albert Einstein College of Medicine and the Benjamin Cardozo School of Law.
Justine Huffaker, RN, MSN, FNP
Director of Nursing, Moses Campus
Over the course of her nearly 30 years at Montefiore, Justine Huffaker has demonstrated excellence in team building, strategic planning, operational planning, and financial and quality management. Ms. Huffaker led an organizational effort to develop a recruitment plan for nursing as well as a communications strategy to foster leadership among nurses. Previously, she served as Interim Chief Executive and worked as clinical director of nursing for Surgery, where she implemented Grand Rounds for clinical areas, recruited and on boarded key administrative nurse managers, and coordinated development of policies and procedures for the liver transplant program. Additionally, she has implemented a Preoperative Joint Education Program for elective orthopaedic patients.
Ms. Huffaker received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing and Master of Science as family nurse practitioner from Pace University.
Elodia Mercier, RNC, MS
Director of Nursing, Moses Campus
Elodia Mercier earned her bachelor of science in nursing from the College of Mount Saint Vincent, a master of science from Iona College, and a post-master's certificate from Pace University. She began her career at Montefiore in 1984 in the Department of Neurology, advanced to Geriatrics and acquired certification from the American Nurses Credentialing Center in gerontology.
Ms. Mercier developed Montefiore’s SHHH (Silent Hospitals Help Healing) program and other key initiatives. She is an active participant in the College of Mount Saint Vincent’s mentorship program that pairs successful alumni/trustees and friends of the College with bright, dedicated students eager to gain skills and insight that will allow them to channel their passion and talents into successful satisfying careers.
In 2011, Elodia was the recipient of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) award for her participation in community affairs.
Diane J. Peyser MS, RN,NEA-BC
Nursing Project Director of Magnet
Diane Peyser received her registered nurse (RN) degree from the Mount Vernon School of Nursing. She attended SUNY at Stony Brook to obtain a bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) and subsequently a master’s degree in gerontologic health. She is currently attending Molloy College to pursue a PhD in nursing. Ms. Peyser is certified by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) in Nurse Executive–Advanced, Gerontological and Medical-Surgical Nursing, and Professional Development.
Ms. Peyser has held a wide range of nursing leadership positions with a primary focus in medical-surgical nursing and care of the elderly. She most recently served as Director of Staff Development and Magnet® Project Director at Huntington Hospital on Long Island. Through her leadership, the hospital achieved its first Magnet® designation in 2004 and two subsequent re-designations in 2008 and 2013.
In her role as Nursing Project Director for Magnet®, Ms. Peyser organizes, coordinates and provides leadership for all Magnet®-related activities for all Montefiore campuses. She interacts with and contributes to the professional development of peers and others practicing in a shared governance model of nursing practice.
Using an interdisciplinary approach, Ms. Peyser acts as change agent and supports the roles of consultant, practitioner, educator and administrator to promote quality care and positive patient outcomes. These roles are integral in ensuring that the medical center sustains excellence in nursing and interdisciplinary practice.
Joan O'Brien, MSN, RN, NE-BC
Director of Nursing, Wakefield Campus
Joan M. O’Brien, MSN, RN, NE-BC began her nearly 30-year career with Montefiore in 1987, as the nursing service associate for a new AIDS program—now called the Center for Positive Living. In this role, she collaborated with the New York State Department of Health and city hospitals to develop the state’s standards of care for patients with HIV before going on to become the nurse manager for the retro-virus care unit, renal inpatient and hemodialysis unit.
Ms. O’Brien became the clinical nurse coordinator for Montefiore’s clinical information system in 1995. Five years later, she was named Director of Nursing for the Montefiore Einstein Center for Heart and Vascular Care. Montefiore’s Heart Transplant and LVAD program was established in collaboration with physician leadership during her time as the clinical nursing director.
Today—as the Director of Nursing for Montefiore’s Wakefield Campus, a position she’s held since May 2011—Ms. O’Brien is responsible for overseeing clinical nursing operations, assisting in the crucial development of high performing healthcare teams with the primary focus of improving the patient and staff experience, clinical outcomes and patient throughput. In 2012, Wakefield received the distinction of top improver in patient satisfaction from Press Ganey.
Ms. O’Brien also has the distinction of participating in The American Nurse Project, photographer Carolyn Jones’ acclaimed book and video project featuring photographs and narratives depicting the profession through the eyes of professionals from across the country.
Mary Ellen Lindros, RN, Ed.D
Director of Professional Practice/Nursing Quality Officer
Mary Ellen Lindros received her Bachelor of Science and Master of Science Degree in Nursing from Adelphi University. Dr. Lindros went on to attend Teachers College, Columbia University, studying in their Nurse Executive Program where she earned a Doctoral Degree in Organization and Leadership from in 2010.
As the Director of Professional Practice, Dr. Lindros helps Montefiore’s Nursing Department stay abreast of professional practice issues. She is integrally involved in the institutional move to an electronic medical record (EMR) system, where she provides guidance on scope of nursing practice and evidence based practice.
Dr. Lindros also oversees the activities of the Nursing Quality Department—helping to enforce the concept of a Just Culture at Montefiore in the Nursing Department. Her fields of clinical expertise include Perinatal Nursing, Nursing Informatics and Nursing Quality.
Dr. Lindros serves as adjunct faculty in Adelphi University’s undergraduate division.