Stephen J. Bekanich, M.D. is a palliative medicine physician and one of the founders of the National Institute of Advance Care Planning (NIACP), an organization that facilitates goals of care discussions for patients and families using disease specific advance directives.
He is the CEO (interim) of the Seton Health Alliance, an accountable care organization with over 2000 physicians in the clinically integrated network. He has created several palliative care programs across the country including Ascension Health’s largest palliative care program, Seton Palliative Care, in Austin, TX.
Prior to starting at Ascension he was an Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine and the University of Utah’s Medical Center where he started and directed their palliative medicine programs.
Dr. Bekanich is the recipient of awards for medical leadership, innovation in health care, teaching, and patient and family satisfaction. His research is in the field of communication, symptoms in serious illness, and medical education.
He and his works have appeared throughout the medical and popular media as well as at national events. His greatest joy in life is spending time with his wife and their three children.