Alejandro Fernandez, MBA, CMPE
Chief Executive Officer
Alejandro Fernandez is the Chief Executive Officer and is responsible for providing the leadership and direction of Gastro Health, PL and its subsidiaries. Mr. Fernandez has over twenty years of experience in operations, finance, management, information technology, sales and marketing in healthcare, technology, and other industries.
In 1997, Mr. Fernandez joined one of Gastro Health’s founding practices, Gastroenterology Care Center, as Executive Administrator and was instrumental in the formation of Gastro Health, PL. In 2011, he was promoted to CEO and since has taken the company to the next level by recruiting physicians, developing new lines of business, and centralizing operations and services. Under Mr. Fernandez’s leadership, Gastro Health, PL has received awards for excellence in revenue cycle operations from Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) and has been listed for the past two years as one of the fastest growing companies in Florida, one of South Florida’s leading medical group and imaging center.
Mr. Fernandez has also received multiple awards for leadership in healthcare and other industries; is a national speaker with MGMA, American Gastroenterological Association (AGA), American Society of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ASGE) and GI Roundtable; currently serves on several national committees, as well as served as president of several local charities and non-for-profit organizations.
Mr. Fernandez has a Bachelor’s degree in Communication from Florida International University, a Master’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Miami, and is a board certified medical practice executive from the American College of Medical Practice Executives.
Lawrence G. Freni, CPA
Chief Financial Officer
Larry is the Chief Financial Officer of Gastro Health joining the Company in January 2017. With over twenty-five years’ experience in healthcare, Larry has a proven track record of helping companies grow both organically and through strategic acquisitions. Previously, Larry was the CFO of AxelaCare Health Solutions, a home infusion company in Kansas that grew to be the 4th largest home infusion company in the country until being sold to United Health Group. Prior to joining AxelaCare, Larry was the CFO at Jefferson Radiology in Hartford, Connecticut. Larry started his career at Deloitte & Touche in Boston.
Larry is a CPA and Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA). He earned a Masters in Accounting (MSA) and an M.B.A. from Northeastern University and a B.A. from Middlebury College in Vermont.
Frank Manes, CPA
Director of Business Development
Frank Manes is the Director of Business Development for Gastro Health. Frank joined Gastro Health in 2016 and is responsible for the Company’s growth strategy via mergers and acquisitions, organic growth and new business line development. He obtained his Bachelors and Masters of Accounting from the University of Florida and began his career in KPMG’s audit practice. Frank subsequently was part of the business development team at Mednax, a national medical group, where he was responsible for mergers and acquisitions of anesthesia practices and pediatric sub-specialty practices. Frank was also a part of Alvarez and Marsal’s Transaction Advisory Group where he advised private equity clients.
Director of Managed Care and Payer Relations
Mariela Lago is the Director of Managed Care and Payer Relations at Gastro Health. Mariela joined Gastro Health in 2011 and is responsible for the strategy and execution of contracting with insurance companies, networks and payers. In addition, she is also responsible for marketing, branding and corporate communications. Mariela has a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and has over twenty five years of experience in the healthcare industry. She started her managed care career in South Florida in 1988 and held various management positions in companies such as: PCA, United HealthCare, WebMD, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Florida and AvMed Health Plans.
Director of Human Resources
Ana Pardino is the Director of Human Resources at Gastro Health. Ana joined Gastro Health in 2011 and is responsible for all recruitment, hiring, employee relations, and training & development. She has over 20 years of experience in Human Resources, with a primary focus in professional development of employees, employee relations, and policy development and implementation. Ana has a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration and has experience in various industries, such as Healthcare, Banking, Construction, and Professional Management.
Director of Information Technology
Brad Garlock is the Director of Information Technology. Brad joined Gastro Health in 2013. He obtained a BAS in Business Management and Supervision in 2015. He has continued to further his education by obtaining several technical certifications including Microsoft Certified System Administrator, WatchGuard Certified System Professional, Palo Alto Accredited Configuration Engineer, and Avaya IP Office Management. Brad has over 20 years’ experience in IT. He began working in the hospitality industry at the Biltmore Hotel. He later served 10 years as the Directory of IT for all of Seaway Hotels. With these responsibilities he managed the IT operations for 5 hotels, 2 golf courses, 10 restaurants, and over 600 users.
Eric G. Mendez, BSc, HT(ASCP)
Director of Pathology
Eric G. Mendez joined Gastro Health, PL as the Laboratory Director in 2010 bringing with him experience in laboratory designing, construction, and management within the health care industry. Mr. Mendez’s responsibilities encompass overseeing all of Gastro Health’s pathology laboratory operations, safety and quality control programs to maintain Gastro Health’s high standards of laboratory excellence on a local, state and national level.
Prior to joining Gastro Health, Mendez served as a Lead Technologist, at Aurora Diagnostics: Mark and Kambour LLC. In his career in academia, Mendez has worked as part of research teams at Georgia’s Institute of Technology, University of Miami’s Neurosurgery Department and the National Science Foundation in Arlington,Virginia. Mendez graduated Cum Laude from Barry University with a Bachelor of Science in Biology with a specialization in Histotechnology.
Director of Health Information Management
Ksenia Liss is the Director of Health Information Management. Ksenia joined Gastro Health in 2016 and is responsible for the implementation, integration, adoption, use, and ongoing evolution of the clinical information systems. She is also responsible for overseeing the Call Center and Medical Records departments. Earlier in her career, she planned to become a physician and successfully completed 3 years of the Medical School program at the State University of St. Petersburg, Russia. Even though Ksenia’s ambitions of becoming a physician changed, she remained passionate about healthcare. In 2011 Ksenia obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Public Health from the City University of New York. She also became a certified EMR trainer in 2012. She has extensive experience of leading large-scale clinical and technology projects. Throughout her career, Ksenia has gained valuable knowledge of the workflow of healthcare provider organizations ranging from large hospitals to private physician practice, including both inpatient and outpatient settings. She serves as the liaison between clinicians, ancillary departments and Information Technology to align clinical and IT standards with department workflow, processes and policies.
Rodrigo Mera joined Gastro Health in 2016 as the Controller. He received his Master’s in Accounting at FIU and has been a controller for the past 10 years; the last five being in Healthcare. While at UMTB Biomedical Rodrigo was responsible the overall financial direction. Subsequently, he was part of Olympus Healthcare, where he streamlined the billing and accounting areas.
Revenue Cycle Manager
Erica Miehl is the Revenue Cycle Manager at Gastro Health. Erica joined Gastro Health in 2011. Her responsibilities include overseeing the billing and collections departments. Erica has been working in the healthcare industry for over 13 years. She graduated Miami Dade College as a certified Medical Billing and Coding Specialist in 2006 and became a Certified Professional Coder (CPC) in 2011. Her leadership and management skills were recognized in 2013, when the billing and collections department was awarded the MGMA Better Performer award.
Health Informatics Manager
Tami Craig is the Health Informatics Manager at Gastro Health. Tami has been with Gastro Health since before its inception in 2006. She began her career 1998 as an Information Technology Coordinator. Tami handled all responsibilities regarding software, hardware, operating systems and peripherals. In 2004 she was promoted to IT Manager. During Gastro Health’s formation, she was promoted to Health Informatics Manager. Currently, Tami is responsible for all aspects of implementation, design, and maintenance of the company’s information system.
Joshua Heinz, MBA
Joshua Heinz is the Anesthesia Manager at Gastro Health. Joshua joined Gastro Health in 2015. He began his career in 1999 at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill as an Anesthesia Technologist. He also served as an Anesthesia Technologist with the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and the Cleveland Clinic Foundation. In 2009 Joshua received his MBA with a concentration in Healthcare Management from Baker College Center for Graduate Studies. He then continued his career at the Memorial Healthcare System where he volunteered as an Executive Intern and earned a leadership position. In addition, Joshua was the Program Director and Anesthesia Department Chairman at City College. Currently, he is responsible for managing and coordinating operational and administrative anesthesia services for multiple Ambulatory Surgical Centers.
Imaging and Biologics Manager
Gisselle Gonzalez is the Imaging and Biologics Manager at Gastro Health. Gisselle joined Gastro Health in 2008 and has held numerous positions within the company leading up to her current role. She graduated from Miami Dade College in 2013 with an Associate’s degree in Accounting, then transferred to Florida International University where she obtained her Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration. Gisselle is responsible for overseeing a diagnostic center and three infusion centers. After 10 years of experience in the medical field, Gisselle has decided to continue her education and is currently enrolled in the Executive MBA program at FIU.