Michael J. Zappa, MD

Michael J. Zappa, MD

High-energy Senior Healthcare Executive who balances business acumen with clinical expertise to design and implement cost-effective solutions that transcend organizational challenges. Background as emergency physician informs ability to take intelligent risks and make administrative decisions that elevate patient care while protecting the bottom line. Entrepreneurial background as owner/operator of profitable healthcare enterprises—including emergency medicine management company and urgent care clinic—drives innovation. Brings a relentless focus on process improvement, service excellence and sound operations to power growth.

Executive Leadership | Entrepreneurial Experience


A $1.1B health system with 981 beds across eight hospitals, 1M annual patient visits, 245,000 Emergency Department visits, 40,000 annual admissions and 7,000 FTEs.

President—Highsmith-Rainey Specialty Hospital | 2017-Present

Highsmith-Rainey is a $110M specialty hospital with five operating suites and 20-bed observation unit dedicated to same day/overnight stay surgeries including ophthalmology, cosmetic, breast and urologic procedures. Through its eight bed ICU, 30-bed progressive care unit, and 28 telemetry beds, this facility provides specialized acute care to patients with ongoing needs such as respiratory failure, ventilator dependence, and wound care. The hospital also serves the outpatient needs of the community through its efficient diagnostic center and Express Care. Leads 300 FTEs.

System Vice President & Associate Chief Medical Officer—Acute Care Services | 2014-Present

Hired into system-level executive operations role based on success rejuvenating underperforming Emergency Services. Lead $250M division encompassing Emergency Services, express/urgent care facilities, hospitalist/intensivist programs and transitional care services. Oversee 500 FTEs.

Executive Director / Vice President of Emergency Services | 2012-2014

Recruited through contract with CitadelMed to revitalize busiest Emergency Department in North Carolina (135,000+ annual patient visits) and 10th busiest Emergency Department in the US. Managed all aspects of the department, four urgent care centers and county EMS system. Oversaw 40 physicians, 200 nurses, 70 paramedics and $120M annual operating budget.

CITADELMED—Boca Raton, Florida

A privately held healthcare consulting and executive management services startup.

Chief Medical Officer & Partner

Led business development for consulting startup offering executive/staff outsourcing, practice analysis, joint venture structuring and third-party financing services to help hospitals and physician group practices thrive in new era of healthcare reform. Developed turnkey proposals for clients including valuations, risk-based contracting, restructuring, mergers, acquisitions, and outsourcing for a 50+ physicians primary care practice, multispecialty groups, cardiology services, urgent care networks, correctional facilities and hospital systems.


A provider of outsourced management and staffing solutions to emergency departments, hospitals and urgent care centers.

President & Owner

Directed all executive, operational, financial and personnel functions for outsourced emergency services group with $25M in annual billings. Recruited and employed 25 physicians. Secured long-term contract to manage Emergency Department at Palms West Hospital, a 175-bed acute care community hospital, and maintained zero subsidy for 16 years.


A private emergency medicine staffing and management company.

Medical Director, Palms West Hospital

Hired by outsourced group to rebuild staff and serve as Medical Director of PWH’s emergency department—a low-volume enterprise with 15,000 annual patient visits that was struggling to gain market share and establish a solid reputation. Rapidly won confidence of patients, staff and administration and negotiated a transition within one year of hire to purchase service contract and rename group—Emergency Physician Enterprises.


A 4,000-square-foot, freestanding facility that was open seven days a week.

Founding Partner

Built urgent care clinic from the ground up to treat patients with minor injuries, including lacerations, fractures and acute medical problems from abdominal pain to pneumonia. Offered onsite diagnostic services, including X-rays. Directed all aspects of startup—from creating business plan to selecting site, constructing the facility and hiring staff. Employed 12 board-certified emergency physicians, Advanced Practice Providers, medical assistants, technologists and on-site manager. Sold business for 400% ROI in 2014.