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Event Speakers


Adele Myszenski, PT, DPT

is an experienced physical therapist, researcher, and rehab supervisor at Henry Ford Hospital. Adele’s experience in performance and organizational management has led to the development of a clinical competency program for general and advanced practice in the hospital setting that is utilized by all four hospitals within our system and has been shared directly with over 250 hospitals across the country. In the past decade, she has led the transition to the EPIC electronic health record for Allied Health across the system, developed multiple novel pathway programs including what may be the first transcatheter aortic valve replacement (tAVR) clinical pathway and successfully launched an early rehab program that has included the addition of over 40 therapists and now provides PT and OT services within 12-24 hours of medical stability for over 180 intensive care unit beds at HFH and another 60 at our community hospitals. An accomplished speaker, she has provided sessions at APTA’s CSM for 6 years, MPTA Fall conference and APTA State Forum, as well as webinars for, and PTLocker via MPTA. Current areas of research include: early rehabilitation in the critical care patient, transcatheter aortic valve replacement and the impact of PT and OT on patients with COVID-19 which is funded by a 2021 Foundation of PT Research Acute Care grant. Adele also teaches Introduction to Research at Wayne State University, DPT Program, Wayne State University.


Justine Kenyon-Nitsch, MS, OTR/L

graduated from Western Michigan University in 2011 with her Master of Science in Occupational Therapy. Since 2012 she has worked in the acute care setting at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit—specifically the medical ICU. Justine was a co-developer of our early rehabilitation program which began in 2015 in our medical ICU. Throughout that time, she has participated in two research initiatives including the MICU Quality Improvement Study and the delirium research project. She has presented our Early Rehab program and research at the Johns Hopkins University Critical Care Rehab Conference, The Michigan Association for Respiratory Therapy Conference and the Michigan Occupational Therapy Association Conference. Justine was involved in designing and implementing a mobility walker for our critically ill patients and she currently leads the volunteer program in our ICU. Justine developed and implemented a group class for our long-term ICU patients to attend weekly incorporating games, activities and arts and crafts. Witnessing every day the negative effects ICU delirium has on patient function and ability to return to real life is why Justine is so passionate about what she does as an acute care OT.


Laura Porto, PT, DPT, CSRS

received her undergraduate degree in Sports & Exercise Science from The University of Akron in Akron, Ohio and went on to obtain her DPT at Gannon University in Erie, Pennsylvania in 2009. She has spent her career working in acute care at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, Michigan. Laura has been a primary member of the neuroscience team, working with neurology and neurosurgery patients on the general practice unit, stroke unit, and in the Neuro ICU. She has worked in the early rehab program in the Neuro ICU since the start of the program in 2018 . Laura is an educator and validator for the stroke unit and one of the department educators for spinal cord injury. She is also the neuroscience mentor for the physical therapy acute care residency program at Henry Ford Hospital. She is a certified stroke rehabilitation specialist since 2022.


Romina Bello, DPT

graduated with her Doctorate in Physical Therapy from Wayne State University in 2008. She has spent her career working at Henry Ford Hospital with a focus on Critical Care Rehab and Kidney, Liver and Multivisceral Transplants. She is the Critical Care Coordinator/ Clinical Lead for Henry Ford Hospital’s Early Rehab Program, in which role she led the training of both experienced and newly competent ICU therapists in treating patients in the ICU under the guidelines of the Critical Care Early Rehab Program. During this training, she provided therapists with training on how to interpret a patient’s critical care course and determine if they were medically appropriate for PT intervention. Romina developed inservices for the critical care nursing staff regarding the role of PT in an ICU and the importance of early rehabilitation for these patients. She has presented at the Johns Hopkins Critical Care Conference and at the Michigan Respiratory Therapy Conference. She provides education sessions to Medical ICU residents about the importance of Physical Therapy in the Acute Care Setting, particularly in a Critical Care Unit. She is a member of the APTA, including the Acute Care Section.


Katelyn Danielle Gundry, MS OTR/L, CSRS

graduated from Western Michigan University in 2014 with her Master of Science in Occupational Therapy. She has dedicated her entire career to acute care and had spent two years working directly in the MICU in the second phase roll out of the early rehab program at Henry Ford Hospital. She later transitioned to a member of the neurology/neurosurgical team working on the stroke and general practice units as well as assisting with the implementation of early rehab in the Neuro ICU. Katelyn is a validator for the stroke unit and is one of the primary occupational therapists in the Henry Ford ALS clinic. She also specializes in the neonatal intensive care unit and performs follow up developmental assessments for children ages 3mo-2year at Henry Ford’s DAC clinic. Kate is a certified stroke rehabilitation specialist since 2022.


Nanette Pfitzenmaier, PT, DPT, CCS

has worked as a board-certified clinical specialist in cardiovascular and pulmonary physical therapy since 2016. She currently practices at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit in the Medical and Cardiothoracic Intensive Care Units and serves as an Assistant Professor in the Wayne State University DPT program. Nanette has presented at the Michigan Physical Therapy Association’s annual conferences and the American Physical Therapy Association’s Combined Sections Meeting and provides guest lectures at several PT programs in the Midwest United States.


Kara Luplow, OTR/L

is a 2006 graduate of Saginaw Valley State University with her bachelor’s of science degree in Occupational Therapy and has spent her career working at Henry Ford Hospital, a level 1 trauma center in Detroit, MI. She has worked exclusively with patients with a variety of critical illnesses in the medical and surgical ICU. She was instrumental in developing a thriving early rehab program with critically ill patients involving collaboration with PT, RN, nursing leadership, respiratory therapy, and physicians. She fosters interdisciplinary relationships by negotiation and consensus building to attain goals for all disciplines. She has led a research team to establish best practice techniques in regards to delirium. She has spent the last few years focusing her attention and efforts in promoting OT’s involvement in identifying delirium and cognitive decline early in the hospital stay. Kara has presented professionally at MiOTA and Johns Hopkins conferences.


Danielle Lupcke, MS OTR/L

graduated from Grand Valley State University in 2007 with her Master of Science in Occupational Therapy. She has worked most of her 13 years as an Occupational Therapist in Acute Care at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, MI, with a focus on the Cardiopulmonary ICU. Currently she works with the Early rehab program with an emphasis on cardiac rehab, energy conservation and transition to life and active human occupation after cardiac event or surgery. Danielle’s role has included rehab and hospital staff education on OT’s roles and goals for cardiac and pulmonary patients, management of cardiac devices during therapy and tailoring treatment to the functional level of critically patients. She has participated in research including Implementation of an OT and PT pathway in transcatheter aortic valve replacement. With study publication in the Journal of Acute Care Physical Therapy in August 2020. She is currently a member of AOTA, a fieldwork educator and has presented webinars to the Michigan Occupational therapy association regarding Occupational Therapy in cardiac care.



Jennifer Trimpe, MPT

graduated in 2006 from Grand Valley State University in western Michigan. Her clinical passions include medical and surgical oncology and she currently practices in early mobility in the trauma & surgery ICU at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit. In her role as the department educator she supports and encourages continuing education and evidence-based best-practices. Jenny has been responsible for program development in the following areas: bone marrow transplant, high risk pregnancy, Vented and Non-vented competency and functional outcomes in the acute care setting. Jenny has presented APTA CSM in 2014 and 2016.

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