Clinical Trial of the Week: Device studies to treat tricuspid regurgitation

By Donna Loyle, communications manager, LIMR


Main Line Health is participating in several clinical trials that are testing devices to treat tricuspid regurgitation (TR), a condition in which blood flows through the tricuspid valve in the wrong direction during part of the cardiac cycle.


  • CLASP TR is a single-arm, early feasibility study testing the Edwards PASCAL transcatheter valve repair system. Participants have the PASCAL system implanted and then are assessed for up to five years post procedure. Eligible patients are those with severe functional or degenerative TR. For more:
  • CLASP II TR is a randomized trial to evaluate transcatheter tricuspid valve repair with the Edwards PASCAL system and optimal medical therapy (OMT) vs. OMT alone in patients with severe TR. Eligible participants must be symptomatic, New York Heart Association (NYHA) class II-IVa or were hospitalized for heart failure in the past 12 months. For more:
  • Cardioband is a single-arm early feasibility study testing the Edwards Cardioband tricuspid valve reconstruction system. Eligible patients must have chronic TR graded as moderate or greater, and must be symptomatic despite medical therapy (patient must be on diuretic therapy). For more:


Each of these trials has inclusion and exclusion criteria, so check the above-noted websites for more information, as well as contact information for the clinical trial coordinator.

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New Position Open at Main Line HealthCare

Main Line HealthCare is seeking a Utilization Management Review Physician to join their team. For more information regarding opportunity details and requirements, please see the attached job posting.

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Announcement: System Medical Director Palliative Care

Dear Palliative Care Colleagues,


We are pleased to announce that Evan Schneidmesser MD has accepted the position of System Medical Director for Palliative Care Services effective September 1, 2020 and is transitioning from his previous Interim Medical Director status. Dr. Schneidmesser has done an admirable job of leading us through a time of significant challenge and growth in our Palliative Care physician team. Recent contributions have included the hiring of three palliative care physicians within the acute care environment, hiring nurse practitioners, expansion of our outpatient care services, and support for the newly established MLH Home Care & Hospice Home Based Palliative Care Program.


Dr. Schneidmesser, originally from Long Island, New York attended medical school at SUNY Downstate in Brooklyn, NY, followed by Internal Medicine Residency at North Shore University Hospital on Long Island, and later completed a fellowship in Hospice and Palliative Care Medicine at Mt. Sinai Medical Center in New York City. Drawing from his undergraduate degrees in both psychology and religion Dr. Schneidmesser developed a strong interest in palliative care during his residency as he came to appreciate the impact of patient centered care, with timely communication and complex symptom management, on the experience of patients and families dealing with serious illness. Other professional interests include music therapy as a tool in symptom management, as well as its impact on quality of life.


All of this in addition to the COVID-19 Pandemic, where Evan helped create a policy for palliative care services during a pandemic. He provided support to his team by restructuring daily workflow and priorities to meet the needs of both our patients and staff, while managing extremely high patient volume and staggering mortality during truly unprecedented times. He guided his group through great challenges both personally and professionally, allowing for inspirational and effective Palliative Care support essential to the care of our patients dealing with isolation that has complicated the COVID environment.


For these reasons, and in recognition of his calm, poised leadership of the Palliative Care multidisciplinary team, we are confident he is the right person to lead the program going forward. We are delighted that he has accepted our offer, and will provide medical management services on an ongoing basis.


We would also like to announce three new palliative care physicians that have joined our team. Alison Rhodes MD, and Drew Kotler MD have recently joined MLH, along with Alexandra Green MD who joined this week, to support both outpatient and inpatient Palliative Care services. We are delighted to recruit this group of well-trained and enthusiastic physicians to our program. They are joining Dr. Jennifer Burke and Dr. Brian Sprandio who have done a terrific job working with Evan and the entire Palliative Care team over the past five months.


Please join us in congratulating Dr. Evan Schneidmesser on his new role and be sure to welcome the new physicians when you see them.

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COVID-19 Town Hall Medical Staff

The next Town Hall for Medical Staff will be held on Wednesday September 30 at 5:00pm. An invitation will be sent the day of the event.


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2020 American Heart Association’s Philadelphia Heart Walk

Dear Colleagues:


Fall has officially arrived and, at Main Line Health, we know that this change of season means the start of another much-anticipated annual event: the American Heart Association Heart Walk. While COVID has required us to postpone many professional and personal celebrations, I am happy to report that there will be a Heart Walk this year! Like most things lately, it will be hosted a little differently, but I am looking forward to once again participating in this event and hope you will join me, too.


Instead of the in-person event typically held at Citizens Bank Park, this year’s Heart Walk will be a virtual one. While I know that I will miss the camaraderie of the in-person event and the opportunity to walk alongside the MLH team, I know that not only is this event a safer option, it also allows our colleagues who have been previously unable to attend the Heart Walk to participate.


This year’s campaign includes a week-long celebration of virtual events beginning on November 2nd and will culminate with the virtual Heart Walk on Friday, November 6th at 1:00pm.


As always, we will be fundraising for the AHA as part of our Heart Walk efforts. If you are able to give, I hope you’ll consider a donation to the American Heart Association to help us meet our $135,000 fundraising goal. Your donation directly benefits our community and supports a number of important initiatives including:

  • Research grants to help us better understand the link between COVID-19 and its interaction with cardiovascular and cerebrovascular diseases.
  • Emergency food relief to community members within North Philadelphia.
  • Providing at-home health kits, which include a blood pressure cuff, thermometer, and educational resources to help patients in our community who need to manage hypertension from the safety of their home.


Every dollar makes a difference, and I appreciate any donations toward this important cause.


Another new feature in this year’s Heart Walk is the opportunity to recognize a colleague for their work during COVID-19. The American Heart Association will be honoring Main Line Health’s Healthcare Heroes during the week of October 19th through 25th. To nominate a fellow colleague to be featured as a healthcare hero, please email with the name of the staff member, photo, job title and hospital name by Monday, October 5th.

The Philadelphia Heart Walk is creating a sense of community, stronger than ever. To build our community, we need your help. Please make time today to join our Heart Walk team (it’s free and easy to register!).  To join our team, CLICK HERE and follow the instructions below:

  1. Click “Create a Team” or “Join a Team”
  2. Remember to choose the correct facility
  3. Create your profile
  4. Follow the prompts!


I’d like to thank and recognize Caitlin Petrakis and Leah Koncir for their leadership and spearheading our internal efforts for a successful and engaging experience for our team.

Please feel free to contact our American Heart Association liaison, Regina Jolly at or 610-717-2780 with any questions.

As always, thank you for all you do for our patients, our community and each other.

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Andi Gilbert



It is with mixed emotions that I announce Andi Gilbert’s plans to retire on January 1, 2021 after more than twenty years of outstanding service to Main Line Health as President of Bryn Mawr Hospital and Executive Leader at MLH.


Andi leaves behind a remarkable legacy, and her leadership of an exceptional team and commitment to safety, quality and equity ensures the hospital will continue to provide the highest quality care for many more years to come. The list of milestones and accomplishments that Andi has achieved during her tenure is extensive, but I’d like to share some highlights:


  • A new Patient Pavilion was opened in 2019, which was funded in part by the most successful capital campaign in BMH’s history – the team surpassed the campaign goal of $30 million by $2.3 million
    • Andi played a critical role in securing $5 million – the single largest gift for this campaign.
  • Renovation of the BMH Emergency Department in 2008 was made possible by a capital campaign that raised $16 million.
  • The BMH Pediatric Unit was renovated in 2016 funded entirely by a $1.6 million gift, which Andi was instrumental in securing.
  • This past February, the Board of Governors approved a project to renovate the Behavioral Health inpatient unit at BMH, and to date, Andi and the team have already raised more than $4 million of the $10 million goal.
  • Additionally, Bryn Mawr Hospital saw record growth in key areas of philanthropic engagement, including: BMH Employee Giving; BMH Physician Giving; Gerhard Society membership and amount of dollars raised; and the number of philanthropic donors at BMH.


Andi’s tenure has also seen the establishment of several other important facilities and patient care services:

  • Main Line Health Newtown Square
  • 135 S. Bryn Mawr Avenue Medical Office Building
  • The Barbara Brodsky Comprehensive Breast Center at BMH
  • Interventional Stroke program
  • The Dee Adams Center for Integrative and Regenerative Medicine (anticipated to open on the BMH campus in early 2021)


A search for Andi’s successor has commenced, and while I regret that we may not be able to send Andi off with the kind of celebration she deserves, I know we’ll find a way to safely and appropriately congratulate Andi.


In the meantime, please join me over these next few months in thanking Andi for the tremendous influence she has had on making Bryn Mawr Hospital and Main Line Health the best place to give and receive care. On behalf of the entire MLH family, I extend my deepest appreciation and wish Andi and her family the very best as they embark on this next chapter.




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Andy Norton’s Memorial Service

Andy’s memorial service will be held on Saturday, September 26 at 11 a.m. and will be private. When it is time, the service will be livestreamed through a link at If you cannot watch the livestream, the service will also be recorded and made available to our MLH Family to watch next week.


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Andy Norton’s Obituary

Dear Colleagues:


I know that some of you may have already read the obituary for Andy that appeared in the Inquirer but, for those of you who haven’t, please see the attached.  It beautifully reflects the man Andy was…humble, compassionate and loved. His leaving this earth too soon will be forever felt at Main Line Health.


Andy’s memorial service will be held on Saturday, September 26 @ 11 a. and will be private; however, it will be livestreamed through a link at You are invited to join if your schedule permits.


As mentioned in a previous e-mail, a memorial fund has been set up in Andy’s name. If you are interested in contributing, please send a check made payable to ”Main Line Health” and mail it to:


Main Line Health Development

240 N. Radnor Chester Road, Suite 340

Radnor, PA  19087


Please indicate “Andy Norton, MD Memorial Fund’ in the memo section.


Thank you for all your thoughts and prayers during this extremely sad time.

Dr. Norton Obituary

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Clinical Trial of the Week: Treatment trial for patients with advanced breast cancer

By Donna Loyle, communications manager, LIMR


EMERALD is a randomized, phase 3, multicenter clinical trial that seeks to compare the experimental oral medication elacestrant to the standard of care options of Faslodex® (fulvestrant) or an aromatase inhibitor (AI) in postmenopausal women and in men with advanced or metastatic ER+/HER2-negative breast cancer.


Eligible participants are those with tumors that harbor mutations in the ligand binding domain of the estrogen receptor 1 (ESR1) gene, or all subjects regardless of ESR1 status and whose disease has relapsed or progressed on one or two prior lines of endocrine therapy. Prior treatment must have included CDK4/6 inhibitor therapy in combination with fulvestrant or an AI.


Participants are randomized into two study arms:

  • Arm 1 receives elacestrant orally once daily
  • Arm 2 receives physician’s choice of monotherapy standard of care medications (fulvestrant, anastrozole, letrozole or exemestane)


The EMERALD study is approved for Lankenau Medical Center and Paoli Hospital. The principal investigators are Albert DeNittis, MD, and Paul Gilman, MD. For more, visit

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Main Line Health Nursing Research and Innovation Council Virtual Research Day

The Virtual MLH research, EBP and innovation conference will be on Wednesday, September 23. To register, For more information about the event, please see below.


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