This site is not optimized for Internet Explorer 8 (or older).

Please upgrade to a newer version of Internet Explorer or use an alternate browser such as Chrome or Firefox.

Christopher Phillips

Christopher C Phillips, M.D., M.B.A., C.P.E., F.A.C.S., F.C.C.P., F.A.C.C.

Ascension Health Michigan
1101 W University Dr
Rochester, MI  48307
United States
You need to be logged in to see this email (login)
Surgeon - Cardiothoracic



Christopher Carl Phillips, M.D., M.B.A., C.P.E., F.A.C.S., F.C.C.P., F.A.C.C.
Detroit Metro Michigan
Phone (m): 419.250.3812
Dr. Phillips' LinkedIn Profile

Communicating, planning and motivational leading are the skills that have allowed me to effectively and efficiently implement change within organizations. As a result, I have successfully led two institutions to achieve national rankings for outstanding cardiovascular care. In 2013, my former institution Trinity Health in Minot, ND, achieved a Top 50 Cardiovascular Hospitals accolade by Truven Health Analytics. I was also recognized as the 2013 Medical Director Winner for the Case in Point Platinum Awards, a unique awards program (sponsored by Dorland Health) that distinguishes the most successful and innovative case management programs working to improve health care across the care continuum. In addition, my current institution Corewell Beaumont Health – Troy, was recognized as a Top 50 Healthgrades Cardiovascular Program 2021-2023 (Beaumont Troy) and Watson Health® 50 Top Cardiovascular Hospitals in the Nation 2022.


Global Cardiovascular Awards 2024 (Cardiovascular News)
Shortlisted for Innovations in Cardiac Surgery
 Global Cardiovascular Awards 2024 - Shortlist

International Leadership Association - PAUSE for Pedagogy Series 10/22
“A Heart Surgeon’s Journey to the Power of 3: Servant Leadership, Followership, and Clinical Management”

 Publication:


 American Board of Thoracic Surgery: Board Certified – Certificate #7689
 American Board of Artificial Intelligence in Medicine (ABAIM)
 Mitral Clip
 CyberKnife
 ECMO/Impella


 Pioneered near painless heart surgery by establishing a robust Enhanced Recovery After Surgery (ERAS) protocol with a concentration on Cryo Nerve Block for Sternotomy
 Historical surgical cardiovascular service line growth; 2020 - 2022 54% increase
o Majority of growth stems from rapid dissemination in the community regarding a new procedure I developed, in conjunction with AtriCure, Inc., for a painless steronotomy as well as the implementation of a new ERAS protocol for all post surgical cardiac patients
 Cardiothoracic Surgery Project lead on an $8 million hospital expansion project for an Endovascular Surgical Hybrid Suite
 Project developer and lead on several cost-reduction programs within the hospital setting:
o Reduced readmissions across all surgical services (reduction realized 18% down to 9%) over one year
o Reduced cost of bronchoscopy equipment by introducing disposable units providing a potential ~$30,000/year cost reduction
o Reduced operational costs, within the OR service line, by evaluating our capital purchases versus leasing and by leveraging purchasing alliances to strengthen control over cost with a proposed reduction (~$50,000 in cost reduction/year)


Ascension Health
Chief Surgeon – Cardiovascular Surgery
08/23 – Present
 Focusing on revitalizing a heart surgery program to provide enhanced service to an underserved community
 Introducing innovative pain management techniques following sternotomy, including periosteal nerve block injections and Cryo Nerve Block for Sternotomy as a component of a robust ERAS program
 Employing novel approaches to address challenging cases of severely calcified annular mitral valve disease, incorporating the application of the harmonic scalpel
 Achieving favorable outcomes in valve-sparing root surgery by utilizing the rare Florida Sleeve Procedure alongside techniques for bicuspid valve repair
 Devised creative methods for rescuing the sternum implicated in mediastinitis cases, incorporating temporary sternal plating systems and wound vacuum systems with irrigation capabilities
 Collaborating closely with the cardiology team to provide assistance and strengthen their thriving Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement (TAVR) clinic

CoreWell Beaumont Health - Michigan
Beaumont Troy
Chief Surgeon – Cardiovascular Surgery
Medical Director Clinical Quality
Associate Professor - Oakland University – William Beaumont School of Medicine & Health Sciences
02/20 – 7/23
Top 50 Healthgrades Cardiovascular Program 2021-2023 (Beaumont Troy)
Watson Health® 50 Top Cardiovascular Hospitals in the Nation 2022 (Beaumont Troy)
 Lead quality clinical initiatives to improve readmissions, reoperations, and blood usage
 Achieved national ranking for teaching hospitals without cardiovascular residency programs: Link to report: Watson Health® 50 Top Cardiovascular Hospitals 2022 (Beaumont Troy)
 Pioneered enhanced pain management post-sternotomy with the use of periosteal nerve block injections as well as cryo rib ablations
 Developed innovational techniques for complex, severely calcified, annular mitral valve disease by utilizing the harmonic scalpel
 Provided successful valve-sparing root surgery leveraging rare Florida Sleeve Procedure and bicuspid valve repair techniques
 Developed innovative techniques to salvage the sternum involved in mediastinitis using temporary sternal plating systems as well as irrigating wound vac systems
 Enhanced current coronary by-pass surgeries by leveraging multiple arterial conduits
 Advanced current practices in our structural heart program by offering more valve repair techniques over simple replacements
 Spearheaded the development and roll-out of a TAVR program at Beaumont Troy Hospital

AtriCure, Inc.
West Chester, OH
04/22 – Present: Principal Investigator, Clinical Advisor, and Preceptor/Instructor Pioneering Cryo Nerve Block for Sternotomy for pain-free sternotomy and AtriClip PRO-V Device
1st Surgeon in Michigan to use off clinical trials Encompass Clamp for Afib management
 Active Research - developing a novel approach for post-sternotomy operative pain utilizing cryo rib ablation technique
 Acted as subject matter expert on the development of the AtriClip PRO-V Device, directly developed from the Phillips Port Access Procedure
 Offering wet lab learning experiences via AtriCure’s Corporate Headquarters
03/12 – 04/15: Clinical Advisor on Research & Development and Preceptor/Instructor (Phillips Port Access Procedure)
 Presenter at the International Symposium on Left Atrial Appendage (ISLAA 2013), Kansas City, MO: Alternative: Posterior Approach for Left Atrial Clip Placement
 In attendance, ~400 individuals, physicians, nurses, and allied health professionals in electrophysiology, cardiology, cardiac surgery, family, and internal medicine.
 Consulting Engagement for the Phillips Port Access Procedure (2012)
 Atricure's Wet Lab: Cardiothoracic Surgeon from Nebraska Medical Center
 Stanford University Hospitals and Clinics: Cardiothoracic Surgeon, Cardiologists, and Neurologists

Mercy Health
Mercy St. Vincent Medical Center, Mercy St. Anne Hospital, and Mercy St. Charles Hospital*
Northwest Region of Ohio
Executive Medical Director & Chief of Service Line for Mercy's Heart & Lung Center
(*Part of a $6+b system serving Ohio & Kentucky)
05/15 – 01/20
 Participated in the following clinical committees: Surgical Governance, Cardiovascular Steering, Executive Robotics and Care Transition Collaborative (CTC), and Structural Heart Failure Program
 Guided and directed the overall development of the Heart & Lung Center
 Lead the strategic, financial, and operational planning for current and future cardiovascular and thoracic surgery services
 Development and operation of capital and operating budgets, with particular regards to new technologies, equipment, supplies, and management information systems
 Developed, implemented, and managed:
 Quality assurance and utilization review programs
 Educational programs
 Participated in the development and delivery of marketing endeavors
 Aided the hospitals to meet and maintain standards and requirements necessary to assure at all times the full accreditation by JCAHO. and the continuance certification under Medicare and Ohio Medicaid programs
 Provided medical liaison and consultation to all Medical departments and Medical Staff departments
 Helped to write and encourage compliance with hospital policies and procedures
 Recruited and reviewed the qualification of and evaluated the performance of personnel
 Reviewed and instructed General Surgery Residents in the care and management of cardiovascular disease through The University of Toledo & St. Vincent General Surgery Residency Program

Novovitalis, L.L.C.
Rochester, MI
Co-Founder, Chief Medical Officer
05/18 – Present
Novovitalis, L.L.C. is a healthcare advisory services firm founded by professionals with significant industry experience in clinical and administrative consultation for the overall healthcare and medical industry. We work with healthcare leadership, physicians, and clinical staff to define their desired professional results and their actions to achieve them. In addition, our goal is to emphasize developing strategic organization leadership, design, and change initiatives.

Specializing in Chief Medical Officer (CMO) services in the form of consultation and/or interim coverage, clinical expert witness service for medical-legal claims, executive coaching, and physician recruiting & vetting for clinical and non-clinical positions within the healthcare industry, including hospitals, medical devices, and pharmaceutical companies.

Nihon Kohden America, Inc – Acting Chief Medical Officer (06/2018 – 02/2019)
 Assisted in the formation of clinical development strategies, lifecycle management, medical affairs, safety responsibilities, and scientific interactions with regulatory bodies
 Assisted in the interpretation of clinical data and literature reviews
 Aided in assuring that there is a consistent application of state-of-the-art scientific and ethical methods to design investigational clinical trials of the highest quality
 Assisted in the handling of responses to regulatory agencies regarding questions about complex safety or efficacy issues
 Collaborated with colleagues in discovery research and preclinical development line functions to move product candidates for entry into clinical investigations
 Worked with marketing to evaluate product candidates, determine product indications, and design post-marketing studies as appropriate
 Assisted in the review of Health Hazard Assessments
 Provided consultative guidance on health-related matters to leaders across the company and with outside health/medical and regulatory organizations
Woomer & Talarico (06/2022 – Present
 Cardiothoracic surgical case review and malpractice consultation
Weitz & Luxenberg, P.C. (11/2018 – Present)
 Lung cancer cases, specializing in mesothelioma consultation
Greco & Wozniak, P.A. (03/2019 – 2020)
 Cardiothoracic surgical case review and malpractice consultation

Pacira Pharmaceuticals
Parsippany, NJ
Consultant - Peer-to-Peer reviews for Exparil usage in cardiovascular & thoracic surgery
06/16 – 06/19

Trinity Health – Mayo Clinic Care Network
Minot, North Dakota
Cardiovascular & Thoracic Surgeon
Executive Medical Director & Chief of Service Line
Associate Professor - University of North Dakota – School of Medicine & Health Sciences
03/11 – 05/15
Truven Health Analytics Top 50 Cardiovascular Programs in the Nation 2013

I successfully positioned Trinity Hospital as a Top 50 Cardiovascular Program in the nation (2013), as named by Truven
Health Analytics, formerly the Healthcare business of Thomson Reuters. This was a monumental achievement for our community hospital. We were 1 of 15 community hospitals to obtain this prestigious award.

The 2013 Medical Director Winner for the Case in Point Platinum Awards, a unique awards program (sponsored by Dorland Health) that recognizes the most successful and innovative case management programs working to improve health care across the care continuum.

 Served as 1 of 8 Physician Leaders for the Trinity Health Physician Roundtable
 Represented 200+ medical providers and 2700+ employees
 Provided direct clinical input to the CEO decision-making process
 Developed and implemented advanced strategic planning initiatives
 Successfully doubled heart volumes while tripling lung volumes over one year by introducing innovative techniques and equipment alongside a holistic approach to patient care and education
 Pioneered the first all-inclusive Atrial Fibrillation Clinic in North Dakota
 Improved overall S.T.S. metrics to top percentile in all S.T.S. benchmarks, compared to the regional and national comparison
 Implemented a VAD program for high-risk PCIs, post cardiogenic shock, and ECMO services
 Acquired CardioHelp, the world's smallest heart and lung machine, and joined the rank of 20 other institutes in the United States that have this life-saving device
 Acted as Faculty Appointed Clinical Teaching Professor for University of North Dakota, School of Medicine & Health Sciences
 Mentored UND 4th year Medical Students and 1st-year Residents
 Introduced new technologies and techniques to bring Trinity's Heart Program to the forefront in the region
 Implemented quality assurance scorecard concepts to report on metrics and volumes
 Worked with internal and external marketing professionals to spotlight a new standard of care for the region
 Appointed to the Oversight Committee for the EMR system (Cerner/Epic)

Lorain Community Hospital (Locums)
Mercy Health System
Lorain, OH
Provided Locums Coverage for the Cardiovascular & Thoracic Service Line
11/10 – 02/11

Cleveland Clinic
Cleveland, OH
Thoracic & Cardiovascular Surgery Staff - Clinical Associate
04/10 – 10/10
 Operated as a Clinical Associate on the Heart & Lung Service
 Taught Board Fellows and Board Residents Operative Techniques, Clinical Skills & Management
 Gained additional expertise in:
 Robotic & Mini-Mitral and Aortic Valve Repair Procedures
 Complex multiple re-do cases and aortic arch procedures
 Endovascular percutaneous and transapical aortic valve replacement
 Heart failure treatments/ventricular reconstruction

Family Leave
11/09 – 03/10

CardioWest – Benefis Healthcare Practitioners
Benefis Hospital (Largest Hospital in Montana)
Great Falls, MT
Cardiovascular & Thoracic Surgeon
Executive Medical Director & Chief of Service Line
 Acted as Cardiovascular and Thoracic Liaison for Quality & Performance Initiatives
 Enrolled in Physician Quality Reporting Initiative (PQRI) for Medicare Part B
 Instituted community outreach
 Mended Hearts Program
 Spirit of Women
 Televised interview on trends in Cardiothoracic Surgery (MT state channel)
 Multi-hospital physician education seminars (CME credit given to attendees)
 Developed and implemented overall Practice Operational Strategy
 Recruitment of Staff
 Patient Education
 Instituted standard operating protocols
 Served on Montana's Legal Panel for Cardiothoracic Surgeons
 Reviewing cases and outcomes related to malpractice cases of peers
 Providing expert opinion regarding the validity of malpractice case

CardioThoracic Surgery Center, P.L.C.
Jackson, TN
Cardiovascular & Thoracic Surgeon
08/06 – 01/08
 Operated independently as well as assisting other partners in the group
 Patient volume yielded ~500+ patients as a primary and secondary provider
 Instituted practice standard operating protocols
 Implemented the following technologies
 Epicore MAZE Device


 Fellow American College of Surgeons (F.A.C.S.)
 Fellow American College of Chest Physicians (F.C.C.P.)
 Fellow American College of Cardiology (F.A.C.C.)
 American Association for Physician Leadership - Certified Physician Executive (C.P.E.)
 Health Policy & Legislative Affairs Advisory Panel
 Academic Honor Societies
 Beta Gamma Sigma – International Business Honor Society for AACSB-accredited schools
 Phi Kappa Phi – All Discipline Honor Society
 American Board of Artificial Intelligence in Medicine (ABAIM)
 Member International Leadership Association (ILA)
 Six Sigma & Lean Modeling – Yellow Belt
 Member American College of Healthcare Executives
 Diplomate of the American Board of Thoracic Surgery and American Board of Medical Specialities
 Member of the Society of Thoracic Surgeons
 Ohio Physicians Health Program - Board of Trustees Director (08/16-08/19)
 Downs Syndrome Association of Greater Toledo – Board of Trustees (2019)
 Board Member – Benefis Heart & Vascular Institute (11/08 – 09/09)


Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.)

05/13 – 10/17
The University of Massachusetts, Isenberg School of Management (GPA 3.975)
Concentration: Medical Management
 Beta Gamma Sigma
 Phi Kappa Phi

Cardiovascular & Thoracic Surgery Fellowship

06/03 – 06/06
Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery Fellow: Indiana University, Indianapolis, Indiana
06/05 – 06/06
Co-Administrative Chief Resident, Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery: Indiana University, Indianapolis, Indiana

General Surgery Residency

06/98 – 06/03
Resident in General Surgery: University at Buffalo, Buffalo, New York
06/02 - 06/03
Administrative Chief Resident: University at Buffalo, Buffalo, New York

Medical School

09/93 - 06/98
Ross University School of Medicine: Dominica, West Indies

Undergraduate Studies

09/89 – 06/93
University at Buffalo, Buffalo, New York

Other Interests

Stem Cell Implantation Trials
Mechanical Circulatory Assistance
Stand-Alone Atrial Fibrillation Procedures
Robotic Assisted Surgery
Mini-Mitral and Aortic Valve Repair
Advanced Endovascular Procedures
Minimal Access Thoracic Surgery


AtriCure, Inc. - Clinical Advisor on Research & Development and Preceptor/Instructor (Phillips Port Access Procedure)

Additional Educational Information

University at Buffalo (B.S. 1988)
Ross Medical School (M.D. 1994)
University at Buffalo General Surgery Residency (1998-2003)
Indiana University Cardiothoracic Residency (2003-2006)

Masters of Business Administration - University of Massachusetts - Amherst (05/2013 - Present)