Maternal-fetal medicine specialist Debra Guinn, MD, joined Kalispell Regional Healthcare in June 2015, opening the Montana Perinatal Center to care for mothers with high-risk pregnancies and perform diagnostic ultrasound, prenatal diagnosis and fetal therapy. She works together with obstetrical providers, neonatologists, pediatricians, nurses and anesthesiologists to develop an optimal plan of care to promote the health and well-being of both mothers and unborn children. Dr. Guinn serves as the medical director for Kalispell Regional Medical Center’s maternal and fetal medicine program.
Having earned her medical degree from Wayne State University School of Medicine in Detroit, Michigan, Dr. Guinn completed her residency in obstetrics and gynecology at Northwestern University Medical School in Chicago. She then sought additional training and completed a fellowship in maternal-fetal medicine at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Dr. Guinn has continued to develop her unique skills throughout her career. She has an extensive academic career resulting in multiple publications primarily in the area of prematurity prevention and strategies to improve neonatal outcomes. She has worked in some of the finest institutions in the country. In 2002 she was named chief of obstetrics and maternal-fetal medicine and associate professor of obstetrics and gynecology and maternal-fetal medicine for Denver Health and Hospital Authority at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center. Over the years, Dr. Guinn realized she missed direct patient care. In 2004 she joined a large private perinatology practice in Portland, Oregon. The years were very fulfilling, caring for thousands of women and babies with a wide variety of needs and services. Her family opted to move to Montana in 2013 and then discovered the wonders of Kalispell. She was thrilled to join Kalispell Regional Healthcare.
Dr. Guinn’s practice philosophy is to be proactive. She works closely with the OB providers to identify risk factors, anticipate problems and put a plan in place to optimize outcomes. She relies heavily on her referring providers and patients and does everything possible to reduce obstacles to care. She believes each patient and case is unique and special and deserves her attention.
In her leisure time, Dr. Guinn and her husband enjoy the outdoors, horseback riding and skiing. They also foster children and have three adult children continuing with their higher education and careers.
Juan Martinez-Poyer, MD, joined the Kalispell Regional Healthcare family in March 2017 as a maternal-fetal medicine specialist with Montana Perinatal Center. Dr. Martinez-Poyer originally comes from Venezuela, but has spent extensive time in the U.S. training and practicing at such institutions as Baylor College of Medicine, the University of Oklahoma, Yale University and Wayne State University. With 32 years of experience in his field, he has received accolades from his time at Wayne State University, Three Rivers Area Hospital in Michigan and as a private practice physician at Northwest Perinatal Center in Portland, Oregon. Prior to joining KRH, Dr. Martinez-Poyer was practicing as a fetal interventionist at the Center for Fetal Diagnosis and Treatment at the University of Pennsylvania and Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP). When not at work he enjoys cooking, hiking and traveling with his wife and son.
Tessa Pitman, MS, CGC, is a certified genetic counselor based out of the Montana Perinatal Center at Kalispell Regional Medical Center. She earned her bachelor of arts degree in psychology from Augsburg College in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and her master’s degree in genetic counseling from the University of Utah Graduate School in Salt Lake City, Utah. Her experience includes working in medical and biochemical genetics and serving as the genetic counselor for the Montana Metabolic Program, Newborn Screening Follow-Up Program and regional Craniofacial Specialty Clinic. She spearheaded the first Montana Metabolic Days in 2009 for individuals with metabolic conditions to network and receive education relating to care for these rare conditions. She greatly enjoyed her experience working with the medical genetics program at Shodair Children’s Hospital in Helena, Montana, from 2008 to 2015. Tessa joined the KRH family in November 2015 with the goal of serving as a local genetic resource for both patients and providers, particularly with the increasing availability of genetic testing options. She is passionate about providing patient-centered care to rural Montana and empowering patients to make informed decisions about genetic testing as it pertains to their values and medical care. She provides genetic counseling services at Kalispell Regional Healthcare to pediatric and adult patients for a broad range of genetic indications and concerns. She is thrilled to be part of Montana Perinatal Center and to collaborate with other providers at Kalispell Regional Healthcare. Activities that rival her love for her profession include spending time with her husband and two young children, cooking, skiing, hiking and chalk painting.
Kelli McMahon-Staats, RNC, BSN, is the perinatal clinical nurse coordinator at Montana Perinatal Center. Kelli is a certified obstetrical registered nurse who has devoted nearly 22 years of expertise to improving the health and welfare of women and children. Her passion has been demonstrated by working as a full-time acute care obstetrical nurse in labor and delivery, postpartum and newborn nursery, and then as the obstetrical nurse manager at Kalispell Regional Medical Center for the last eight years. Kelli’s combination of clinical education, leadership and expertise fueled her desire to assist in the growth of the much-needed field of perinatology in Flathead County and surrounding areas. Education of patients, families and nursing staff has been a constant thread throughout Kelli’s career, evidenced by her participation as a longtime member of the Rocky Mountain Childbirth Committee. Kelli is a strong proponent of a holistic approach to patient care. She considers the physical, emotional and spiritual aspects for each patient.
Denise Cox, BSN, joined Montana Perinatal Center with more than 15 years of experience at a fast-paced OB/GYN private practice and on the labor and delivery units at Kalispell Regional Medical Center and North Valley Hospital. She is devoted to the field of obstetrics and passionate about caring for woman as they navigate pregnancy, labor and childbirth. She enjoys the everyday challenges and opportunities for clinical growth that arise from caring for high risk-patients. In addition, she is an avid proponent of patient-centered care – working hard to ensure that patients have a choice in their own care. In her free time, Denise is dedicated to the practice of yoga. She routinely attends yoga instructor trainings and seminars to lend a more holistic approach to her nursing background. When not at the clinic or on the yoga mat, you will find Denise with her family and friends rock climbing, backpacking and adventuring in the great outdoors.
Christie Weseman, BSN, comes to Montana Perinatal Center after several years working with women in labor and delivery at the Kalispell Regional Medical Center Birthing Center. Christie is certified in childbirth education and, for the last few years, has enjoyed educating women and their partners about labor and labor support. She has a bachelor’s degree in nursing from Montana State University and is currently attending Frontier Nursing University in pursuit of her master’s degree in nurse midwifery. Christie is a wife and mom of three children. She has spent the majority of her life in Montana and loves this beautiful country. When not at the clinic or attending classes, she enjoys spending time with her family outdoors.
Jennifer McDyre, CCMA, joined Montana Perinatal Center in June 2017 as the first certified clinical medical assistant on staff. Jennifer is from Philadelphia, where she obtained a bachelor’s degree from Cabrini University in 2007. She studied fine arts and psychology, but then shifted gears to work in the rewarding world of behavioral therapy with a focus on autism. Jennifer made the move west and in 2014 landed at Billings Clinic, where she obtained her CCMA qualifications. She has a wide range of clinical and administrative certifications and offers a dynamic set of skills to support the perinatal and genetics staff. When not at the clinic, Jennifer enjoys spending time with her husband and tending to their homestead.
Beth Darnell performs ultrasound exams for Montana Perinatal Center. She is passionate about guiding families through the process of seeing their unborn child, often for the very first time, offering emotional support as needed. Having extensive experience in ultrasound, Beth initially worked in a community hospital setting as a clinical instructor, later serving as the lead sonographer. Following the birth of her triplets, Beth developed a heightened interest in obstetrics with a desire to pursue training in specialized fetal studies. An opportunity to work with Northwest Perinatal Center in Portland, Oregon, allowed Beth to follow her dream and obtain credentialing in fetal echocardiography, first trimester screening and cervical length. She supervised a growing, multicenter ultrasound program, obtaining accreditation with the American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine and organizing continuing education opportunities for clinicians and staff. Beth looks forward to using her skills to serve the Kalispell region and is very happy to be part of the Montana Perinatal Center team.
Linda Bond, ARDMS, ARRT, is the newest addition to our ultrasound staff at Montana Perinatal Center. Linda became interested in the field of sonography during her internship to become a radiologic technologist. After working for several years in different areas of radiology, she was accepted into the Portland Adventist School of Ultrasound. For 17 of the last 25 years, Linda has been scanning in an obstetrical/perinatal environment. In addition to being credentialed with the American Registry for Diagnostic Sonography, Linda is certified in first trimester screening and cervical length assessments. She enjoys guiding her patients through the ultrasound exam and collaborating with the perinatologist to give each patient the best possible experience. She enjoys being a part of the growing perinatology services here in the Flathead Valley and considers this a great opportunity to grow as a sonographer and serve the community. Lind a enjoys spending time outdoors hiking, biking, skiing and gardening.
Ali Applegate is a lifelong resident of the Flathead Valley and an integral member of the Montana Perinatal Center team. She joined the clinic in the summer of 2015 as the practice associate. Ali provides exceptional customer service to both her patients and co-workers. In her free time, she enjoys being with her family and friends, crafting and spending time on Flathead Lake in the summer.
Laura Poitra is the practice manager for Montana Perinatal Center. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin La Crosse with a degree in therapeutic recreation in 2001. Over the years, she gained experience in long-term care and special education and has served adults with developmental disabilities. In 2008, she joined the Kalispell Regional Healthcare team as the rehab specialist and ATP for Kalispell Medical Equipment. Over her eight years with the department, she honed her leadership and management skills, assuming lead and department head positions. It was through those roles that Laura realized her desire to pursue additional opportunities in health care management, and in February 2016 she joined Montana Perinatal Center as the practice manager. Laura provides support and guidance to the health care team while being a good steward of the organization’s mission and resources. In her time away from the clinic, Laura enjoys spending time with her family and friends, cooking, traveling, appreciating the arts and exploring the great outdoors.