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Charles A. Bongiorno, M.D, Medical Director

Dr. Bongiorno grew up in Moorestown NJ, a suburb of Philadelphia, PA, and has an undergraduate degree in Psychology from Villanova University, and a degree in Medicine from Virginia Commonwealth University – Medical College of Virginia.

He trained at Jefferson University Hospital for his General Psychiatry Residency. During his residency years, he won the top Resident Teaching Award and was honored to be inducted into AOA (Alpha Omega Alpha). He was later selected to be a Co-Chief Psychiatry Fellow and co-authored a textbook chapter on genetic influences in Psychiatry.

After graduating from training, he helped to build a Department of Behavioral Health from the ground up in Southwestern Wyoming at Memorial Hospital of Sweetwater County and served as both the Medical Director of Behavioral Health and the Chairman of the Department of Medicine there. He provided expert lectures on suicide to the County Commissioners and testified on involuntary commitment procedures for the State Legislature. He then served as the Medical Director at Indian River Medical Center (now part of the Cleveland Clinic) in Vero Beach, FL, and then went on to become the GS15 Medical Director of the Mental Health Clinic at Eglin Air Force Base in Northern Florida. During his time working for the USAF, Dr. Bongiorno also served as the Chief Liaison to the “AMRO” Fitness for Duty Board. Dr. Bongiorno has extensive university-level medical training, administrative and leadership experience, as well as military medicine and military occupational medicine expertise. He is experienced in teaching trainees and serving on core hospital committees to promote institutional and customer success.

Dr. Bongiorno is a Board-Certified physician who has been working at ECBH full-time since August of 2021 when he was also voted in as the President of the Medical Staff. Dr. Bongiorno loves working at ECBH and has remarked that: “The people and the culture here are the reason why it is such a fantastic place to work … I believe in the philosophy of people, process, and product.”

He is keenly aware that “invisible” emotional wounds exist in our patients, particularly in our military members and Veterans, and he shares the Hospital’s Mission to make a difference in the lives we serve here. One of his core goals is excellent customer service and he recognizes that this begins with early rapport-building with as well as transparency and honesty in the doctor-patient relationship.

Medical Director Roy Deal | EmeraldCoastBehavioral.com

Roy Deal, MD, Director of Military Services

Dr. Deal was born in Kansas and raised in Florida. He says he will always call Panama City, Florida, his home because his parents have always maintained a residence in our community. He attended the University of Mississippi in Oxford, Mississippi, during his undergraduate studies, where he was awarded his Bachelor of Arts in Chemistry, Zoology and Psychology. He continued his graduate studies at the University of Mississippi, where he also received his Medical Degree.

Dr. Deal then went on to complete his Psychiatry residency at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee, where he became the Chief Resident. Following his residency, Dr. Deal opened a private practice in Nashville in 1989. He was quickly approached by the State of Tennessee Department of Corrections to serve as a consultant to assist them with incarcerated individuals suffering from mental illness. He formed Correctional Psychiatric Consultants, Inc. and had the privilege to work with the Tennessee Legislature and Government on a team who designed and opened a 288-bed Psychiatric Specialty Prison in Nashville (Lois M. Deberry Special Needs Facility).

Before leaving Nashville, Dr. Deal’s company provided contract psychiatric services to 14 prisons and over 17,000 inmates; a model still followed state-wide in Tennessee. He specializes in the treatment of general, adult and active military/veterans’ psychiatry. He has a specific focus using diagnostic assessments and patient treatment with psychotherapy and psychopharmacological medication management. Dr. Deal serves as Director of Military Services and exclusively champions our Military Resiliency Program for active duty service members. Dr. Deal is also certified to perform TMS.

Doctor Bianca Harbison, MD | EmeraldCoastBehavioral.com

Bianca Harbison, MD

Dr. Harbison was born and raised in San Antonio, Texas. She attended the University of the Incarnate Word in San Antonio and graduated Summa Cum Laude with her Bachelor of Science in Chemistry. She continued her graduate studies at the University of Texas Medical School at Houston, where she received her Medical Degree.

Dr. Harbison completed her residency in both Pathology and Psychiatry at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri. Following her residency, Dr. Harbison worked at Singing River Hospital in Pascagoula, Mississippi, where she was the Director of Psychiatry, Director of Geriatric Psychiatry, and the developer and Director of the hospital’s ECT Program. During this same time, Dr. Harbison also worked at Ocean Springs Hospital in nearby Ocean Springs, Mississippi, where she was the Director of their Structured Outpatient Program.

Dr. Harbison then served as the Chair of Psychiatry at Gulfport Memorial Hospital in Gulfport, MS, from 2007-2013, where she also performed ECT and emergency department consultation.

Dr. Harbison relocated to Panama City, Florida, in 2013 to join our team. She specializes in crisis intervention psychiatry and has extensive emergency room experience. Her psychiatric approach is rooted in behavioral neuroscience, or biological psychiatry, with a focus on interventional brain stimulation. Dr. Harbison treats adult patients at Emerald Coast Behavioral Hospital, including active duty and retired military service members in our Military Resiliency Program.

In addition to treating patients on our inpatient units, Dr. Harbison is a certified acupuncture practitioner and champions our TMS Practice at ECBH’s main campus in Panama City. She is also a clinical staff member at The Florida State University College of Medicine.

Doctor Diana Melazzo, DO | EmeraldCoastBehavioral.com

Diana Melazzo, DO, ABPN, Outpatient Medical Director

Dr. Melazzo is a Pennsylvania native. She graduated with her Bachelor of Science in Biology and Chemistry from West Chester University of Pennsylvania. She then attended Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, where she was awarded her Medical Degree.

Dr. Melazzo completed her Internal Medicine internship at Parkview Hospital in Philadelphia. Following her internship, Dr. Melazzo moved to Arizona to complete her residencies. She finished her Internal Medicine residency at Tucson General Hospital in Tucson, Arizona, and then her Psychiatry residency at Maricopa Integrated Health System in Phoenix, Arizona. Dr. Melazzo remained in Phoenix, working as an inpatient psychiatrist for the med/psych unit and emergency psychiatry department at Maricopa Medical Center, as well as the addictions medicine and detoxification unit at Phoenix LARC Meta Center until 2004. During this time, she also volunteered at St. Vincent de Paul Society Medical Clinic providing psychiatric and medication management services.

In 2004, Dr. Melazzo relocated to Florida, working at West Florida Hospital in Pensacola for several years. She moved to the Ft. Walton Beach, Florida area in 2006, where she joined a private practice and also worked for the Department of Veterans Affairs. Dr. Melazzo became part of the Emerald Coast Behavioral Hospital team in 2014, where she is the chief psychiatrist at the Okaloosa Outpatient Center in Ft. Walton Beach. She is also certified in TMS and champions our TMS practice at the Okaloosa Outpatient Center.

Aldorian Chaney, M.D., M.P.H

Dr. Aldorian Chaney works with Emerald Coast Behavioral Hospital’s patients primarily at our outpatient locations. Dr. Chaney was born in Gainesville, Florida but grew up in Marietta, Georgia. She attended the University of Pittsburgh for her Bachelor of Science in Psychology and then completed her Masters of Public Health from Georgia Southern University. Afterward, she completed her medical degree from the American University of Integrative Sciences in Barbados. Dr. Chaney then completed her General Psychiatry Residency at Meharry Medical College followed by finishing a fellowship in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland. Dr. Chaney contributes her passion for the behavioral health field of medicine to the connection and rewarding experience that is made by listening to patients’ stories and providing support through various therapy options. When she isn’t working, Dr. Chaney enjoys spending time with her family, watching sports and trying new restaurants.

Jessica Petch

Jessica Petch, MSN, APRN, PMHNP-BC

Jessica Petch works in all the inpatient unit’s as well as our outpatient center in Panama City and does ER consultation for ECBH. She Graduated from Gulf Coast State College (GCSC) with an Associates in Science in the Registered Nurse program. Jessica received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from University of West Florida and a Master of Science in Nursing, Family Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner from the University of South Alabama. Sher was born in Louisiana, raised in Mississippi but Florida has been her home for 16 years now.

Jessica was drawn to nursing because she enjoys helping others in their time of need. After working in the intensive care unit, she decided to explore nursing care in psychiatry where she began to truly appreciate the connection between the mind and body and the challenge many face when seeking help which then led to her desire to advance her role in helping others in their recovery to wellness and advancing her knowledge in psychopharmacology. She started working as a Registered Nurse at ECBH in 2011 then as an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse as a Board Certified Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner in 2016.

Kevin Thompson

Kevin Thompson, APRN, PMHNP-BC

Kevin Thompson started working at Emerald Coast Behavioral 2 years ago after finishing a long career in the United States Military. Because of Kevin’s experience working in the military and alongside of our military service members he understands their unique challenges. Kevin has been a huge benefit to our Military Resiliency Unit for Active Duty service members. He grew up in LaGrange, Georgia and attended Valdosta State before enlisting in the Navy. When he isn’t working he enjoys watching his Georgia Bulldogs, playing guitar, singing and enjoying time at the beach with his friends and family.

Claire Joy Tiglao DNP, APRN, PMHNP-BC

Claire finished her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Central Luzon Doctor’s Hospital-Educational Institution in Tarlac City, Philippines in 2005 and received her Master of Science in Nursing, Family Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner degree from the University of South Alabama in Mobile, Alabama. She is a Golden Key International Honor Society Awardee and also a Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing Awardee. She completed the Florida Alcohol and Drug Abuse Association Medication Assisted Treatment and Buprenorphine Waiver Training. She obtained her Doctorate of Nursing Degree from the University of South Alabama in 2021. Claire has 15 years of nursing experience in different areas such as medical-surgical, obstetrics, post-intensive care unit, rehabilitation, private duty nursing, and behavioral health nursing. Claire has more than 5 years’ experience in psychiatric-mental health nursing.

Claire was born and raised in Mabalacat City, Pampanga, Philippines before immigrating to the United States. She has lived in Panama City, Florida, and Oakland, California, and has fallen in love with Florida weather and our beautiful beaches and is very proud to be a “Floridian.”

Claire has always dreamed of becoming a true and dedicated instrument of healing and in making an outstanding influence on people through rendering mental healthcare services for the total well-being of individuals, families, and communities regardless of age, gender, race, and ethnicity. Providing tender love, care, and compassion for humanity because of physical and mental health matters.  I truly believe that there is always hope for mentally-ill patients. Her greatest aspiration is to give joy to everyone.

Brittany Whitfield APRN, PMHNP-BC

Brittany primarily see patients in our outpatient facilities. She graduated from the Registered Nursing Program at Chipola College in 2006 and started working at Emerald Coast Behavioral Hospital in 2007. Brittany received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Gulf Coast State College in 2014 and a Master of Science in Nursing from the University of South Alabama in 2020. Brittany was born and raised in Panama City so she really calls our local community home!

Brittany was drawn to mental health during her clinical rotations in her nursing program and immediately knew this was her future career path. In her free time, Brittany loves spending time outdoors and fishing on the water in the area. She also enjoys traveling and cheering on her daughter in softball!

Tabitha World, APRN, PMHNP-BC

Tabitha World, APRN, PMHNP-BC is a board certified Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner. She works at the inpatient hospital and is dedicated to transforming lives through compassionate care and mental health advocacy. With an unyielding passion for making a difference, Tabitha brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to her role. She earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing at Florida A&M University, followed by her pursuit of higher education at Walden University, where she earned her Master’s of Science in Nursing. She was born and raised in Panama City, FL and is committed to destigmatizing mental health treatment in her community. Tabitha draws inspiration from the opportunity to help those suffering in silence. She is passionate about “removing the blinders” and giving a hand to those in need. Beyond her professional accomplishments, Tabitha finds joy in sewing, cooking, dancing, and traveling. Jamaica is her current favored travel destination, although, she aspires to explore more countries on her bucket list.

Christina Zeisler, APRN, PMHNP-BC

Christina Zeisler, APRN, PMHNP-BC is a provider at our Okaloosa Outpatient Facility in Fort Walton Beach. She graduated from the Registered Nursing Program at Okaloosa-Walton College in 2006. Christina then went on to receive her Bachelor of Science in Nursing and Master of Science in Nursing from University of West Florida and Walden University respectively.

Christina was born in Valdosta, Georgia but grew up in Fort Walton Beach where she currently treats many of her patients! She attributes her desire to work in this field of medicine to life experience and how she is genuinely passionate about the mental health patient population. When she is not in the office, she enjoys the beach, travelling, spending time with her family as well as the gym and bodybuilding.