Chuck Scholz and RN Care Manager Leslie Koetters

Former Quincy Mayor Chuck Scholz has encountered a series of health challenges over the past two decades, requiring the meticulous management of numerous appointments and prescriptions. The addition of Quincy Medical Group (QMG) RN Care Manager Leslie Koetters to his care team marked a transformative shift in his healthcare journey.

Scholz’s health issues began in 2004 with a diagnosis of intestinal ischemia, a condition that nearly claimed his life. Subsequently, he underwent surgery to remove 28 inches of his intestine. Expressing concerns about weakness to his then-primary care provider, retired QMG Physician Dr. John Scott, Scholz was referred to retired QMG Gastroenterologist Dr. John Bozdech.

Noticing changes in Scholz’s appearance, Dr. Bozdech realized he might be facing a serious health issue. He promptly arranged an appointment for him at Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis the following day.

“Dr. Bozdech called me at 10:30 at night and informed me I had an appointment at Barnes the next morning. I asked, ‘Well, what’s going on?’ And he replied, ‘I’ve been Googling pictures of you from the newspaper, and I looked at your forehead right above your glasses, and you don’t have any fat there. ‘I can see that you’re wasting, you’ve got liver disease,’” Scholz recalled.

At Barnes the next day, Scholz was diagnosed with nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), a precursor to liver cancer. He continued multiple doctors’ visits to manage the condition while awaiting a liver transplant. During a visit to Barnes Hospital in 2014, his doctor informed him that a cancerous tumor had been detected in the liver, which ultimately moved him up the list for a transplant. He received a transplant on Feb. 13, 2015.

Over the next decade, Scholz continued to manage his health. Given the complexity of his medical history and ongoing care, a cohesive approach was needed. After multiple visits to the emergency room in recent months, they met Koetters, who is the Care Manager Coordinator at QMG and spoke to Scholz and his wife, Becky, about the Transitional Care Management Program.

Koetters recalls her initial encounters with Scholz in the hospital. Despite his uncertainty about needing her services, Koetters recognized the potential to streamline his care and alleviate some of the burden placed on him and Becky.

“I see probably half a dozen different doctors, and you want somebody that knows that you’re with each one and that it’s all centralized and coordinated,” Scholz explained. “I think it has helped me tremendously because I have a coordinated plan of care now with all the various physicians, and Leslie can coordinate all that,” he added.

As part of the program, Koetters oversees patients of Dr. Adam Reyburn, QMG Internal Medicine Physician, Scholz’s new primary care provider. She supports patients admitted to the hospital or those with multiple emergency room visits in the last 90 days. Scholz had over a dozen ER visits and three inpatient admissions over recent months; Koetters played a pivotal role in helping manage his health.

Her efforts included managing medications, scheduling doctor visits, and acting as a bridge between Scholz and Dr. Reyburn’s office, ensuring seamless communication and continuity of care.

“I’m on the sidelines trying to get that all organized for him. That’s exactly what the nurses in care management do daily — we sift through appointments, answer questions, and get extra support involved if needed. We aim to be the link between our patients and their providers.”

Although Koetters sees herself on the sidelines of his care, Scholz calls her the “quarterback.” He expresses gratitude for Koetters’s support, emphasizing the profound impact on his well-being.

Even during Scholz’s recent travels to Ireland and Georgia, Koetters’s support remained, offering reassurance and assistance across continents.

“His family went to Ireland and had a great time and recently returned from Georgia. When I spoke with them recently after their trip to Georgia, Becky expressed to me, ‘I can’t tell you how important that was.’ They were gone, maybe three or four weeks, but were able to enjoy their time without the added stress. That made me so happy to hear,” said Koetters.

Scholz added, “I can’t imagine living in a big city and it’s likely you wouldn’t you don’t even know who you’re talking to. But I know Leslie. Leslie’s become a friend.”

Over the years, his health has had many ups and downs, yet Scholz has found respite in the care of Koetters and his dedicated physicians including Dr. Scott, Dr. Bozdech, Dr. Reyburn, QMG Surgeon Dr. Todd Petty, QMG Gastroenterologist Dr. Karthik Tripathi, and QMG Dietitian Brittany Winship.

Koetters is humble about her impact, sharing that the rewards she receives from seeing her patients thrive are worth more than anything.

“This is my most favorite job. I’ve been a nurse for 26 years and worked here at QMG just shy of eight years, and this is hands down my most favorite job. I think it’s because it fills my cup. One of the things I’m most proud of is that we are making a difference. I see it every single day in our patients,” said Koetters.

For more information on the Care Management services at QMG, visit