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Melanie Perry

Melanie started working in the Operating Room in 2011. Her orientation experience led her to look for information online about the experiences of other operating room nurses. Apart from the professional organizations, she couldn’t find anything, and she wanted something more personal. Since she couldn’t find it, she decided to create it, and The Circulating Life was born. Melanie used her blog to write about everything from being new in the OR, to best practices, and to describing the similar frustrations we all struggle with as perioperative professionals. The blog led to a Facebook page that quickly took on a life of its own. Having a low-stress place to talk about our shared experiences and the frustrations that we deal with on a daily basis quickly became a community of OR professionals that would give advice, ask questions, share helpful answers, and also pass on their knowledge to others. The number of perioperative professionals following the page caught the attention of Hank Balch and Justin Poulin, and in September 2020, they reached out to Melanie to share the vision of First Case with her.


Paul Wafer

Paul’s perioperative career spans over 40 years and in that time, he has gone from working as an orderly to being the CEO of a hospital. Paul is also the founder of Alpha Consulting, and he’s spent the last 16 years as a perioperative consultant, focusing strictly on all aspects of the perioperative continuum. Hank Balch recognized Paul as an expert in perioperative productivity, and interviewed him on the Beyond Clean podcast. Paul’s passion to ensure that hospitals establish productivity levels that will maintain excellent patient care and staff education and retention, along with his many years of perioperative experience made him an obvious choice to co-host the First Case podcast. 


Justin Poulin & Hank Balch

Justin and Hank founded Beyond Clean in 2017 with the transformational idea of connecting the individuals in Sterile Processing through innovative, disruptive platforms such as podcasting, social media, and new technology. They combined Justin’s passion for podcasting with Hank’s expertise as a well-known industry writer, blogger, and social media connoisseur. Together, and with the help of the team they built, Beyond Clean was changing the way the Sterile Processing industry thought about education.

So, what does this have to do with First Case?

As the Beyond Clean platform grew, Hank and Justin would constantly get asked, “How many of your followers are from the Operating Room?” Or, they would get told, “You need to be doing this for Operating Room professionals as well!” They listened, and realized that there was a need to bring the same industry disruption to the Operating Room that they had brought to Sterile Processing.

But while Justin and Hank both had Sterile Processing experience, they didn’t know the OR. They realized that they were going to need OR experts who were passionate about the Operating Room to join them if they were going to start another company that was dedicated to bringing relevant education to the perioperative world.

And that’s where Paul and Melanie entered the picture. From the very first planning meeting, the excitement, energy, and experience that they both brought to the team made it obvious that First Case was going to succeed in challenging the status quo of OR education and bring together the people, processes, and products that are moving the industry forward in a way that has never been seen before.

More than a Podcast:
Consulting, Mentorship, & Conferences

Believing that quality or innovation alone will take your company across the finish line is a costly mistake.  Customers will never know about a solution unless they are told.

And how will they be told unless your brand starts doing some talking?

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