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Staff Bios

Judith M. Hickey



Judy is an experienced medical marketing executive and expert in medical product reimbursement. She has been responsible for the development and execution of reimbursement strategic plans, market positioning strategies, and policy analysis for medical products manufacturers throughout the U.S. and Europe.

Prior to the formation of PRG in 1991, Ms. Hickey's background included positions in marketing management and reimbursement for medical product companies, including Medtronic and Datascope.

In addition to consulting, Ms. Hickey has served as a faculty member of the Heart Rhythm Society (HRS), a medical specialty group representing more than 3700 specialists in cardiac pacing and electrophysiology in 64 countries, and as co-chairman of the Reimbursement Special Interest Group for LifeScience AlleyTM. Ms. Hickey is also an associate of the Women's Business Leaders of the U.S. Health Care Industry Foundation. She has written numerous published articles on reimbursement issues and is a sought after speaker on various reimbursement related topics. Ms. Hickey is also a lecturer at Stanford University, University of California, the University of Minnesota's Carlson School of Management, and the University of St. Thomas.

She holds a BSBA degree in Marketing from the University of Missouri and an MBA Degree from the University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, Minnesota.

Melissa Martinson, MS, PhD


Health Economics

Dr. Martinson's commercial experience includes 20 years of clinical trials, health economics and outcomes studies in both medical device and pharmaceutical companies. This experience makes her well qualified to help PRG's clients demonstrate the value of their new medical technologies to healthcare payers, public and private.

Melissa assists clients by evaluating the economics of their medical devices. She has used economic analyses to show the trade-offs between the up-front costs of implantable devices and device therapies administered in-hospital, and savings achieved during the post-implant or post-treatment period. This helps payers understand the economic benefit of covering procedures in which the costs are all up-front. She has used economic analyses to identify patient subgroups that achieve the greatest clinical success per dollar invested in treatment. This helps clients lead coverage applications with their most compelling clinical indication and request reimbursement commensurate with the best cost-effectiveness. She frequently uses economic models in her analyses so that data from clinical trials, healthcare claims databases, and the literature can be combined. This enables her to complete economic analyses for clients quickly and cheaply compared to economic analyses using primary data from outcomes studies.

She holds a B.A. in Biology from Swarthmore College, and both an M.S. in Statistics and a Ph.D. in Health Services Research from the University of Minnesota. She holds an Adjunct Professorship at the University of Minnesota in the School of Public Health, where she teaches graduate-level economic modeling.

Joseph L. Hickey


Vice President

Since joining PRG at its inception, Joe has specialized in developing and maintaining our extensive databases, as well as designing custom reports and procuring data to meet the specific needs of our clients. He is also responsible for managing PRG's day-to-day operations.

Prior to joining PRG, Joe served nearly 20 years in various sales, marketing, accounting, and market research positions in the consumer products industry.

He holds a BS degree in Business Logistics from the University of Missouri.

Karissa Alm CPC


Manager, Reimbursement Support Services

Karissa is responsible for conducting coding, coverage and payment research, as well as supervising our reimbursement hotline services. In addition, she conducts customized training programs for PRG's clients on a variety of reimbursement related topics.

Karissa brings to PRG an extensive background in coding and claims management. Her previous experience as a claims examiner brings a unique insight and perception to PRG's customer support services.

Ms. Alm graduated Cum Laude from St. Cloud State University with a BA degree in Communication Disorders. She also holds the professional designation of Certified Professional Coder (CPC).

Denise Griesmann, CPC


Senior Reimbursement Specialist

Denise provides support to our reimbursement hotline services as well as conducting coding and payer research.

Prior to joining PRG Denise spent several years in the provider area where she was responsible for physician office billing and submitting insurance claims.

Ms. Griesmann received her professional designation of Certified Professional Coder (CPC) in 2008.

Jodi Chartrand, CCS


Reimbursement Specialist

Jodi provides support to our reimbursement hotline services as well as conducting coding and payer research.

Jodi's experience includes 20 years as a dental hygienist and dental office manager. As manager she was responsible for billing and submitting insurance claims.

Ms. Chartrand graduated from the University of Minnesota in 1982. She received her accreditation as a Certified Coding Specialist (CCS) in 2005 from the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA).

Bernard (Bud) Horwath


Regulatory Consultant

Bud has over 30 years of experience in the medical device industry. His extensive background in medical device product development includes all classes of devices. He has a successful track record with regulatory submissions in the US (IDEs, 510(k)s and PMAs), the EU (Technical Files, Design Dossiers) and Canada (License Applications).

Bud has a BS degree in engineering from the University of Minnesota and has worked with several medical device companies, including Medtronic, Envoy Medical and Comedicus.