About Us 2017-07-20T14:19:06+00:00


It’s Personal.

When we hear that we have a terrible illness that will shorten our life, it’s personal. When we learn about the benefits and trade-offs of the tests and procedures that will decide what treatments and medicines may help us, it’s personal. As we make our way through side effects, complications, insurance plans, phone calls, waiting rooms, pharmacies, labs, radiology departments, billing departments, emergency rooms, intensive care units, medical jargon, bad news, good news, family conflict, family meetings, caregivers, nursing homes, physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, psychotherapy, medication lists, medication interactions, medication errors, advance directives, wills, and the many losses, it’s personal.

Our living and dying are not medical. While it’s a natural truth that we all die, the last chapter of life is better centered in our homes and with our families.

We want healthcare providers that understand that we are not malfunctioning machines, exploitable consumers, or anything less than people like they are. We want to get the most possible benefit from medical technology and we need help to avoid the many pitfalls of our fragmented and complex healthcare system. And never is this more important than when we or somebody we love needs hospice and palliative medicine, or end of life care.

We need guidance, not guidelines. As we face the hardest challenge there is, we want to be seen as we see ourselves…as the people we are with the people that love us. We want to chart our own course on our own terms.
It’s personal.

ResolutionCare is just such a team of professionals providing such care to people in their homes and sharing this perspective to improve care wherever people with serious illness seek value in our healthcare system.

The economics of providing healthcare to those of us with serious illness are changing fast. As a society, we are realizing that “more” is not better. New ways of funding programs like ResolutionCare are being developed across the country to be driven by the value they deliver to people defined by them as satisfaction with their experience and well-being, rather than by the number of encounters or procedures that can be billed. That’s a very hopeful sign of sanity.

ResolutionCare is built on the strength of good sense, a great business plan, and a perfect moment as our society is engaged now in an electrified conversation about how care for people who are dying should be provided by the rest of us that are under the illusion that we are not dying.

We funded our start-up with an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign because this project belongs to the more than 1100 people that have died under my care in the last seven years. ResolutionCare belongs to the community of families that understand the value of this work far better than I do.

ResolutionCare belongs to my community here in Northern California. ResolutionCare belongs to any and all in this global neighborhood that resonate with our goals and want to join us in bringing respect, kindness, and skills in service to those making their way through the greatest challenge all of us will face.

It’s personal.

So step in, sign up, and spread the word. ResolutionCare is ready to make as big a difference in the world as we can.

In community,
Michael D. Fratkin, MD
Father, Husband, Brother, Son, and Friend


Dr. Michael Fratkin

Dr. Michael Fratkin

President & Founder

Father, husband, brother, son, and physician, Dr. Fratkin is dedicated to the well being of his community. Since completing his training, he has made his home and built his family in rural Northern California. He has served his community in primary care in a community clinic system, as a medical director of our local hospice, as a leader in the community hospital medical staff, and a transformative voice for improving the experience of people facing the end of life.
At a time of great demographic and cultural change in our society, Dr. Fratkin has created ResolutionCare to insure capable and soulful care of everyone, everywhere as they approach the completion of life.

ResolutionCare leverages partnerships with existing healthcare providers and payers to provide telehealth applications that bring greater quality of living and greater quality of dying. The Palliative Care team at ResolutionCare openly shares our expertise and mentorship so people can receive the care they need where they live and on their own terms.

Lizzie Giles

Lizzie Giles, MD

Palliative Care Physician

Born and raised in Tennessee, Lizzie was initially on track to become an academic philosopher before changing course to study medicine.  She jumped the pond to pursue her medical degree in Poland and then returned to the south to complete a Family Medicine residency in Huntsville, Alabama.  During her residency, Lizzie was drawn to Palliative Care in order to bridge the gap between medicine, the humanities, and the human potential for hope in the face of life-limiting illness.

Lizzie completed her fellowship training in Queens, New York City, and has come out west to start her work amongst the beautiful Redwoods where she hopes to help guide patients and families through the complexity of modern medical care while honoring their values and maximizing quality of life.

When not at work, Lizzie loves the outdoors, traveling, live theater, movies, and eating delicious, vegan food with her family.

Stephen G. Franey

CFO & Chief Strategy Officer

Steve received his bachelor’s degree from Occidental College and his MBA from the University of Chicago in Hospital Administration. He has been in the health care field for 35 years, 28 of which have been in consulting with Booz, Allen & Hamilton; Abt Associates; and his own firms—Franey & Associates Consulting, Inc. and Franey, Thompson & Associates, Inc.

The range of Steve’s consulting work includes strategic planning, business/innovation start-up and development, clinical integration, governance & organization structuring, organizational development, operations assessment, quality and performance improvement, compensation system modeling and design, leadership development and training, and financial planning. In Steve’s career he has served as a chief operating officer of a hospital, been a chief executive officer of a large multi-specialty clinic, been a nursing home administrator, as well as worked both nationally and internationally.

He is a national expert on measuring quality and innovation in End-of-Life/Palliative Care, the past Chairman and current member of the Circle of Life Award Committee, Chair of Martha & Mary Ministries, a member of numerous health care boards, and a frequent conference speaker.

Leanne Lynch

Leanne Lynch

Office Synergist

Leanne (Lee) Lynch is ResolutionCare‘s Office Synergist (Administrative Coordinator). Providing referral assistance and coordination to people cared for by ResolutionCare, orienting volunteers and supporters, workflow organization, technical assistance, scheduling, practice compliance, and workspace beautification are just some of the ResolutionCare tasks that she takes on.

Lee has a Bachelor’s Degree in Geography from California State University Stanislaus and is currently working on completing her Master’s Degree at Humboldt State University within the Environment and Community Master’s Program.

In her spare time, Lee loves backpacking, hiking, gardening, and generally being outside.

Amy Bruce

Amy J. Bruce

 Operations Director

Amy received her BA and Master of Public Policy degrees from the University of Michigan. After serving as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Mali and Paraguay, Amy has enjoyed a career in community health education and is an experienced program leader in both the public and non-profit sectors. She is dedicated to improving our health care system, especially as it touches each of us at the end of life. She is married and has two amazing children, Chloe and Conrad. Amy is an avid skier, runner, yogi and reader.

Cheyenne Balsley

Cheyenne Balsley

Director of Business Operations

Cheyenne is our Business Manager. She brings her highly organized style to the day to day running of ResolutionCare.  She looks out for and takes care of our employees, pays the bills and is responsible for the practice’s insurance billing.  Cheyenne comes to us after running her own successful business for over sixteen years. She is proud of her family which includes two extremely artistic boys, a fantastic husband and a pug. She cherishes family time, creating art, and dreams of travel.

Kat Cummings

Kat Cummings

Community Health Worker

Kat should have been born a mermaid.  She loves the water, surfing and scuba diving.  She describes a perfect day as playing at the beach with her large family.

A personal experience led her to become a professional caregiver.  She has spent the last seven years caring for members of our community in need.  Kat is a mother first, then a wife, and then the Heart of ResolutionCare.  She grudgingly admits that she would so much rather be out with our patients than working in the office.  Our patients are lucky to have Kat on their team.

Carl Magruder

Carl Magruder

Director of Spiritual Support Services

Carl Magruder is our Director of Spiritual Support Services.  He is trained as an interfaith chaplain with a Master’s of Divinity degree from Pacific School of Religion.  Carl supports all systems of belief, from Atheist to Zoroastrian.  Often when physical health issues arise, spiritual well-being is a determinative aspect of our human existence and quality of life.

Spiritual support starts with a listening ear and an open heart.  It can include meditation, prayer, scripture reading, music, helping to initiate or strengthen ties with local faith groups, grief counseling, meaning-making, or other approaches.  Carl can serve as a sounding board for ethical dilemmas, advance directives, or memorial planning.

Carl is a bicyclist, beekeeper, bibliophile, motorcyclist, tinkerer, and fountain pen restorer.  He has two kids, aged 7 and 11.  He first got interested in studying spirituality during his Master’s Degree at HSU in 2002, and is thrilled that his life journey has led him back to Humboldt County as a part of the team doing pioneering work at Resolution Care.

Maureen McSherri

Maureen McSherri, RN

Clinical Director

Before becoming an RN, Maureen was a childbirth educator and an assistant midwife for women wanting to give birth in their homes. She found the transition from caring for those at the beginning of life to caring for those at the end of life a natural one. For most of the past 15 years she has been a palliative care nurse working for hospice.

A couple of years ago she spent time volunteering for Hospice Africa Uganda in East Africa. That was a life changing experience reinforcing how the needs of the dying are cross-cultural and her belief that all people need good symptom control to do their Spiritual work at the end of life.

Transitioning to palliative care with ResolutionCare has been an easy one. “We not only have the honor of caring for people during this huge transition in their lives, but I get to do it with the incredible team here at ResolutionCare. Inside and outside the office everyone is incredibly dedicated to improving the lives of those in our community with enthusiasm and love.”

When not working, Maureen loves spending time with family, including 6 (soon 7!) grandchildren. She loves the outdoors and spending time with her dog Cinco, who has become ResolutionCare’s little mascot.

Nikki Lang

Nikki Lang, MSW

Social Worker

Nikki received her MSW from Portland State University in 2007. She has spent the last nine years working in both urban and rural hospitals and favors a strength based and person/family centered approach.

Nikki’s experiences over the years have taught her about the power of medicine, interdisciplinary teamwork, compassion and the resilience of the human spirit.  Being a daughter of a midwife and alternative healer, she is honored to step outside of the hospital model and approach a practice that sees the individual and their family through a more holistic lens.

Nikki was raised in the Santa Cruz Mountains and spent 10 years in Portland prior to re-locating to Humboldt County to be a part of a small family homestead.  Nikki lives with her husband and her six-year-old twins and is lucky to have both her mother and step-mother right next door. Nikki spends her free time cooking, gardening and thrifting. Nikki is passionate about social justice, advocating for the most vulnerable populations within our community, and inspired by Riot Grrrls everywhere.

Paula Amis

Paula Amis, RN

Palliative Care Nurse

Why did I want to join the amazing team at ResolutionCare? I have been a nurse for over 6 years working primarily in a hospital setting. I have always loved caring for others but I was starting to feel like I wasn’t making a difference anymore.

I have worked with Michael Fratkin, MD throughout my career and had begun talking with him about how I could make the difference that I wanted to again. I loved the idea of working with people and helping them in many different ways that would meet their goals, needs and wants. I was beyond excited when I was offered the job, and I couldn’t wait to begin my new role to help make a true difference.

I realize this all sounds selfish but I have lived in this community my whole life and wanted to help others in the community be empowered by healthcare. After working here for over a month, it couldn’t be more clear that I am in the right place. I am able to help others in ways I could not in a hospital setting. I thank everyone at ResolutionCare and the entire community for putting their trust in me.

Dana Landes

Dana Landes

Patient Care Coordinator

A transplant from the Bay Area, Dana moved to Humboldt County to be close to her aging parents.  With a degree in psychology and wide range of professional and personal experience, she is excited to bring her unique gifts and talents to her position of Patient Care Coordinator.

Dana has a compassionate, tender heart and is hopeful to cultivate and strengthen these aspects of herself.  She couldn’t be happier to spend the best hours of the day and the best years of her life serving this team.  She whole-heartedly believes in the goals and values that this special group of people is fostering and creating.  She stands with ResolutionCare as it brings amazing resources to our community while educating and being an example to others.

Outside of work, Dana enjoys music and dance foremost! She continues to learn and practice drums while enjoying the transformative effects of listening to great music.  She is fascinated with the topics of metaphysics, science and philosophy.  She also enjoys the outdoors, hiking and yoga, spending time with friends and family. Her cats, Zildjian and Maybe are her sweet four legged companions.

Ryan Lee

Ryan Lee, LVN

Palliative Care Nurse

Ryan is a self-proclaimed career student and geek who cherishes time with his family, especially his goddaughter, nieces and nephews.

Ryan believes that healthcare should be centered around the person, not their disease, problem, status or any other dehumanizing aspect of our healthcare system, but truly centered on the whole person sitting across from him.

This philosophy, combined with the opportunity to teach, be creative, learn, and to make a meaningful impact on his community, is what excited him to join the ResolutionCare team.

In his spare time, Ryan likes to geek out on card games, board games, and go to the theater.

Kathy Mize

Katherine M. Mize, RN

Palliative Care Nurse

Kathy was born, raised, and raised her own son on the California north coast, the oldest of six girls in a very close family. When her grandmother, herself a retired RN, was struggling with rapidly declining health, Kathy’s family trusted her to move into her home and care for her to the end of her life. That amazing, powerful experience moved Kathy to pursue nursing.

She feels fortunate to have worked in skilled nursing, ambulatory medicine and pediatrics. Her heart has always pulled her in the way of palliative medicine, particularly in-home, and she eagerly pursued the opportunity to get to work with the incredible team at ResolutionCare.

Using technology to bring the doctor remotely to people in their own homes is fantastic. Working with a loving, talented, multi-faceted team like this to take care of our community and loved ones is a dream come true for this small-town girl.

Sean McCann

Sean McCann

Community Health Worker

Sean’s primary motivation is the desire to build healthier, more compassionate, cohesive, and sustainable communities. This has been the uniting focus for his work as a practitioner of Chinese medicine, caregiver, and community organizer. He feels that being a Community Health Worker with ResolutionCare brings together all that he has learned from these experiences.

Sean earned a B.S. in Religious Studies at HSU and an M.S. in Oriental Medicine and B.S. in Professional Health Sciences from East West College of Natural Medicine. He completed advanced clinical training with the Association for Traditional Studies and the associated Alternative Clinic in Asheville, NC, where he was in practice as an acupuncturist and herbalist.

Sean was drawn to palliative and end of life care through his work as a clinician and caregiver, seeing the transformation that is possible when someone who is struggling with advanced illness receives the care and compassion they need and deserve. He feels immensely grateful for the opportunity to contribute to the amazing work being done by the inspiring team at ResolutionCare.

Sean’s favorite thing is spending time with his wife, Trang, and his daughter, Ixora. His passions include practicing taiji and daoyin/qigong, identifying and experimenting with wild medicinal plants, and exploring the magnificent parks and wilderness areas of the West.

Gina Dusi, BSW

Gina Dusi, BSW

Social Worker

Tonya Netjes, LVN

Tonya Netjes, LVN

Palliative Care Nurse

Suz Collins

Suz Collins, RN

Palliative Care Nurse

Jona Stewart

Jona Stewart

Community Health Worker

Niamh van Meines

Niamh van Meines, NP

Palliative Care Nurse Practitioner

Niamh is an experienced, board certified nurse practitioner and clinical leader in hospice, palliative care and community health. She is committed to the delivery of quality palliative care and assisting healthcare organizations to deliver specialist level care through program development, compliance, and clinical education.

Since 2008, she has been a consultant working with numerous hospice and palliative care organizations to achieve program development goals, conduct clinical program evaluations for mergers and acquisitions, and respond to regulatory compliance challenges.

Niamh is a graduate of Columbia University’s Nurse Practitioner program and is currently pursuing a PhD in nursing education. She has certifications as an adult nurse practitioner in oncology and in hospice and palliative care.

Brendan Balsley

Brendan Balsley

Palliative Care Assistant


Bringing capable and compassionate care to everyone everywhere in the face of serious illness.