Hospice and Palliative Care Providers

Hospice Providers

Dr. Janet Bull

Janet Bull, MD

Janet Bull is the Chief Medical Officer at Four Seasons. She is committed to providing compassionate, quality care and oversees the medical needs of patients at Four Seasons. She believes in the "whole patient care" model embracing the physical, psychosocial, and spiritual needs of patients. Full Bio »
Janet Bull is the Chief Medical Officer at Four Seasons. She is committed to providing compassionate, quality care and oversees the medical needs of patients at Four Seasons. She believes in the "whole patient care" model embracing the physical, psychosocial, and spiritual needs of patients.
 
Janet grew up in Miami, Florida. She attended Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, graduating with a BS in Biology. She earned her MD degree at Southwestern University in Dallas, and completed a residency in Obstetrics-Gynecology at the University of Alabama in Birmingham. In 1985, she entered private practice in Atlanta, Georgia. She received her board certifications in both Obstetrics-Gynecology and Endoscopy Surgery. She holds additional board certifications in Hospice and Palliative Medicine and Hospice Medical Director Certification. In 2016, she completed her Masters in Business Administration at East Carolina University. 
 
In 2000, she joined Four Seasons. She was instrumental in starting the Palliative Care program in 2003, and in 2005, she founded the Clinical Research department in an attempt to bring meaningful studies to help lessen suffering to patients. Since that time, Four Seasons has conducted 45 clinical studies in advancing the evidence of care for treating people with advanced illnesses. She currently sits on the Steering Committee of the Palliative Care Research Cooperative Group and the Global Palliative Care Quality Alliance. 
 
Janet holds a consultant assistant professorship in the internal medicine department at Duke University Medical Center and is a clinical instructor in Medicine at UNC- CH Henderson Family Practice Residency Program. She is a Fellow of the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine (AAHPM), served as Treasurer of the AAHPM in 2015, and is currently President Elect. She is frequent speaker at both state and national meetings, and has co-directed the National Hospice Medical Course for several years. 
 
Janet has been an Associate Editor of PC-FACS since 2008, and has authored or coauthored a multitude of publications on palliative care and quality data reporting. She is Program Director of the Palliative Care Immersion Course, which has trained hundreds of clinicians across the country since 2010, and directs Four Seasons’ Center of Excellence which offers consulting services in hospice, palliative care, and research. She was the recipient of the Sharon O. Dixon Award in 2007, the Cuniff-Dixon Hastings Award in 2012, and the Josephino Magno Distinguished Physician Award in 2013. In 2014,, she was named one of the Top 25 Visionaries in the Field award by the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine.

Janet enjoys spending time with her family and friends.  Her hobbies are biking, wakeboarding, yoga, and pottery. 

 
Claire Hicks, MD

Claire Hicks, MD

Claire Hicks joined the Four Seasons staff as a team physician in January, 2010, but has a long history of delivering hospice care in south Georgia. After finishing a residency in Family Medicine at Mercer University School of Medicine in 1988, she moved to Jesup, Georgia to work as a family physician. The southern rural HIV epidemic was just beginning, and to serve the needs of those patients she became an HIV specialist, eventually moving from private practice to public health, serving as the Clinical Coordinator for HIV Services for the Southeast Health District in Georgia. Full Bio »
Claire Hicks joined the Four Seasons staff as a team physician in January, 2010, but has a long history of delivering hospice care in south Georgia. After finishing a residency in Family Medicine at Mercer University School of Medicine in 1988, she moved to Jesup, Georgia to work as a family physician. The southern rural HIV epidemic was just beginning, and to serve the needs of those patients she became an HIV specialist, eventually moving from private practice to public health, serving as the Clinical Coordinator for HIV Services for the Southeast Health District in Georgia.
 
Her work with dying HIV patients, in the years before medications made HIV a chronic disease, inspired her interest in the field of hospice care. She served as medical director of Hospice of South Georgia from its inception in 1997. She was recognized for her work in HIV care with a Nightline special, Journey of a Country Doctor, in 1996, and honored as Georgia Woman of the Year in 1999. In 2015, Claire was named Physician of the Year by the NC Assoication for Homecare and Hospice.
 
Claire graduated from Emory University with a BA in religion, and spent several years in graduate school at the University of Michigan studying Chinese. She earned her MD degree at The Medical College of Georgia in Augusta, GA. Dr. Hicks is interested in the field of Narrative Medicine and facilitates groups of colleagues, fellows and students in order to acquire skills of narrative competence, and provide a space for reflective writing.
 
Claire is board certified in both Family Medicine and Hospice and Palliative Medicine.
 
She has two daughters. A native of northeast Georgia, she is happy to be back in the mountains, and looks forward to planting flowers in mountain soil. She also looks forward to full time work in the field she loves.
 
Jennifer Hovendon, MD

Jennifer Hovendon, MD

Jennifer Hovendon has been a caring staff physician at Four Seasons’ Elizabeth House since 2004. She is deeply committed to providing the most holistic and compassionate care to patients and their families while focusing on excellence in the management of complex symptoms. Helping patients and families understand what to expect next is a crucial part of her everyday role. Full Bio »
Jennifer Hovendon has been a caring staff physician at Four Seasons’ Elizabeth House since 2004. She is deeply committed to providing the most holistic and compassionate care to patients and their families while focusing on excellence in the management of complex symptoms. Helping patients and families understand what to expect next is a crucial part of her everyday role.
 
Jennifer grew up in Westchester County, New York. She graduated from Amherst College in western Massachusetts with degrees in biology and French language and literature. She earned her MD degree at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore, Maryland, in 1994. Moving ever southward, she completed her Family Medicine residency at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, where she served as Co-Chief Resident.
 
She moved to Hendersonville in 1997, joining Blue Ridge Community Health Services as a primary care physician. She then became a clinical faculty member for the Hendersonville Family Practice Residency Program for 4 years prior to joining Four Seasons. She is board certified in both Family Medicine and Hospice and Palliative Care Medicine.
 
Jennifer and her husband keep busy at home with their two children and a menagerie of pets. She also currently serves on the board of Our Children's Place, an innovative correctional program designed to help break the intergenerational cycle of crime, poverty, substance abuse and family violence.
 
Joseph M. Kovaz

Joseph M. Kovaz, MD

Joseph M. Kovaz has always had a strong interest in doctor/patient relationships and communication. During the many years of his practice experience, he has continued to refine and improve the quality of that relationship, which he believes is the cornerstone of healing. Full Bio »
Joseph M. Kovaz has always had a strong interest in doctor/patient relationships and communication. During the many years of his practice experience, he has continued to refine and improve the quality of that relationship, which he believes is the cornerstone of healing.
 
Dr. Kovaz graduated from Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia with both his BA and MD. He served as a clinical faculty member at the Anderson Area Medical Center Family Practice Residency Program in Anderson, South Carolina, and was in private practice in Anderson for 17 years prior to relocating to Wisconsin. At the University of Wisconsin in Madison, he served as a clinical faculty professor, a general internist and also worked in the Pain Clinic, where he gained extensive experience in managing painful disorders.
 
Dr. Kovaz has a strong interest in psychoanalysis. Before coming to Four Seasons, he spent 14 months in Zurich, Switzerland, where he received a certificate of continuing education from the International School of Analytical Psychology.
 
He is board certified in general internal medicine and hospice and palliative care.
 
Dr. Kovaz enjoys reading and participates in an informal book club for the staff of Four Seasons.
 
 



Palliative Care Providers

John Morris, MD, FAAHPM

John Morris is the Palliative Care Medical Director at Four Seasons. He is passionate about helping people through the stress of serious illness and guiding people through the complex medical system. As a pulmonary and critical care physician, he witnessed just how stressful serious illness can be for patients and families. He is excited to be a part of an organization and multi-disciplinary team that helps relieve the stress and guide people through the difficulties of serious illness. Full Bio »
John Morris is the Palliative Care Medical Director at Four Seasons. He is passionate about helping people through the stress of serious illness and guiding people through the complex medical system. As a pulmonary and critical care physician, he witnessed just how stressful serious illness can be for patients and families. He is excited to be a part of an organization and multi-disciplinary team that helps relieve the stress and guide people through the difficulties of serious illness.
 
John grew up in Birmingham, Alabama. He graduated from Vanderbilt University with a BA in Mathematics. From there he earned his MD degree from the University of Alabama, Birmingham. He did his Internal Medicine and Pulmonary Medicine specialty training in Winston-Salem at Wake Forest University/NC Baptist Hospital. John moved to Hendersonville in 1989 where he worked in pulmonary, critical care and sleep medicine. John started working for Four Seasons part time in 2002 to help start the palliative care program in the hospitals. He left private practice to work full time for Four Seasons in 2006.
 
He is board certified in Internal Medicine, Pulmonary Medicine, Sleep Medicine, and Hospice and Palliative Care Medicine. He is a Fellow of the College of Chest Physicians and a Fellow of the American Association of Hospice and Palliative Medicine. He is also a Clinical Instructor in Medicine at UNC-CH for the Hendersonville Family Practice Residency. He is the Sharon O. Dixon Award winner in 2011 for clinical excellence.
 
John is married to Peggy and they have 3 children. John enjoys fly fishing, hiking, reading, running, and gardening when he is not working.
 
Rikki Nugent Hooper FNP-C

Rikki Nugent Hooper, FNP-C

Rikki Nugent Hooper is the team leader with the Palliative Care Team. She is a strong believer in quality care at end of life and advocates for her patients and families to achieve their goals. Full Bio »
Rikki Nugent Hooper is the team leader with the Palliative Care Team. She is a strong believer in quality care at end of life and advocates for her patients and families to achieve their goals.
 
In 1991, Rikki immigrated to the U.S. after completing basic nurse education in England. As an RN, she worked in oncology and in critical care prior to becoming an FNP. As an FNP, she worked in critical care, sleep and pulmonary medicine before coming to Four Seasons in 2004.
 
Rikki is certified in Advanced Hospice and Palliative Nursing and provides care for patients in all settings, both pediatric and adult. She has presented at both regional and national meetings on a variety of topics. She also serves on the AAHPM Task Force for Quality.
 
Outside of work, she has volunteered at the Free Clinics in Henderson County and has been a Girl Scout leader for 17 years. She has 2 daughters and 3 grandchildren. She loves to spend time outside, gardening, hiking and generally enjoying the mountains. She also enjoys sewing, knitting and cooking.
 
Harvey Nix PA-C

Harvey Nix, PA-C

Harvey Nix graduated in 2006 from the Physician Assistant program at the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston with a Masters of Physician Assistant Studies. After relocating from Charlotte, NC, he worked for the orthopedic spine specialty group, Spine Carolina, Asheville, NC. There, he worked as surgical first assistant and performed histories and physicals for surgical patients in addition to patient post-op care. Full Bio »

Harvey Nix graduated in 2006 from the Physician Assistant program at the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston with a Masters of Physician Assistant Studies. After relocating from Charlotte, NC, he worked for the orthopedic spine specialty group, Spine Carolina, Asheville, NC. There, he worked as surgical first assistant and performed histories and physicals for surgical patients in addition to patient post-op care.

After this experience, Harvey decided he would like to better use the breadth of his PA training in medicine. Also, his personal experience- as a cancer survivor and his mother's dying from ALS influenced his desire to seek a position to assist patients dealing with life-limiting illness. This decision led to Harvey joining the Four Seasons team in early 2008 as a mid-level practitioner in the Palliative Care Group.

Harvey is a Fellow member of the American Academy of Physician Assistants, a member of the North Carolina Academy of Physician Assistants, and the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine.

Harvey graduated from NC State University in 1986 with a Bachelors of Science in Industrial Engineering. Prior to his career as a Physician Assistant, he was previously employed in Charlotte, NC, by First Union Corporation and Duke Energy. He worked as a project manager and business consultant at both companies. His work involved productivity improvement studies, process design, performance measurement, and strategic planning.

Harvey and his wife have been married for over 25 years and have three sons. Harvey enjoys time spent with the Boy Scouts of America. All three of his sons achieved the rank of Eagle scout. He enjoys living in western NC and likes boating, snow skiing, camping, and hiking. He enjoyed performing as an actor in motion pictures, television and commercials in the past.

 
Chari Price MSN, GNP-C

Chari Price, MSN, GNP-C

Chari Price joined Four Seasons in August of 2009. What appeals to her most about palliative care is the ability to develop relationships and provide care to patients and their families during a vulnerable time in their lives. She works primarily in skilled nursing facilities and homes in Buncombe and North Henderson counties. Full Bio »
Chari Price joined Four Seasons in August of 2009. What appeals to her most about palliative care is the ability to develop relationships and provide care to patients and their families during a vulnerable time in their lives. She works primarily in skilled nursing facilities and homes in Buncombe and North Henderson counties.
 
She has a BS in Social Work from Abilene Christian University. The year following her graduation, she got married and started back to school at AB Tech where she earned an AD in Nursing. The majority of her nursing career was spent in home health. She returned to school after a 25-year absence and completed the MSN program at Duke University School of Nursing in May, 2009 with a GNP and post-masters ANP in August of 2009.
 
Chari is married and has 3 grown children. She is a member of her church's mission committee, having made 2 trips to Honduras with plans to return for future mission work.