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Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Hundreds find all the right moves at Spirit of Women Day of Dance event

Dancing With The Stars choreographer led activities at all-day event

INDIANAPOLIS – Nearly 500 participants got in step together to promote women’s heart health and wellness at the 10th annual Spirit of Women Day of Dance program sponsored by Franciscan St. Francis Health.

Led by Dancing With The Stars choreographer Chelsie Hightower women of all ages – and a few men – learned a variety of dance steps and aerobic moves at the all-day event, held Feb. 23 at the Indiana State Fairgrounds. She was joined the Pacemates, cheer squad for the Indiana Pacers, and WNBA Indiana Infernos Dancers,

“It was a spectacular day of dancing, laughter, friendship and fun all in the pursuit of better health and vitality," said Lori Warner, director of Women and Children’s Services for Franciscan St. Francis Health.  “We really enjoyed meeting new people in the community.”

Hightower has traded steps with a stream of, athletes and other well-known stars in her role as a partner/choreographer on Dancing with the Stars. She also was paired with Helio Castroneves – three time winner of the Indianapolis 500 – as they won top honors to cap the show’s fifth season.

Nearly 80 hospitals across the country sponsored Day of Dance in February as part of Spirit of Women, a network of hospitals nationwide committed to caring for women. The goal of the event is to offer an exciting and interactive way to get people moving through exercise that is creative, expressive and fun.

Nearly 500 attended Day of Dance activities on Feb. 23.

Dancing With The Stars choreographer Chelsie Hightower
was this year's guest emcee.

Even youngsters got in step with the dances and aerobic
activities throughout the day.

Franciscan St. Francis Health staff were on hand to provide
health screenings throughout the day.

Chelsie Hightower took time out for photo opportunities
throughout the day.

Break times provided participants to network with one another.

Dude's got moves. Some brave males took time to participate
in what traditionally has been an all-female event.


Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Cherished Beginnings: Where every delivery in Morgan County is special

MOORESVILLE, Ind. – When it comes to pre-natal care and delivery of babies in Morgan County, most parents-to-be choose Franciscan St. Francis Health-Mooresville.

After March 1, it will be the only hospital in that county to deliver babies and provide neonatal intensive care to patients in south-central Indiana.

The long successful Cherished Beginnings program at Franciscan St. Francis-Mooresville features 13 private rooms, which allows a patient to stay in one room for labor, delivery, recovery and postpartum care.

“We believe the birth of any child should be a positive and memorable experience,” said Stephanie Brock, RN, director of obstetrics and Cherished Beginnings. “The hospital offers a unique family-centered approach to childbirth that promotes building new family bonds.”

About 500 babies are born annually at Franciscan St. Francis-Mooresville.

Additionally, the obstetrics unit has two Caesarean surgical suites, Level II special care nursery services, and access to Level III neonatal intensive care physicians and nurses at Franciscan St. Francis-Indianapolis, the only unit of its kind in south-central Indiana.
The Mooresville hospital offers a full range of obstetrics and gynecological services. Led by Glenn Dobbs, DO, Southside OBGYN is located near the Cherished Beginnings unit. Dobbs, an independent physician at Franciscan St. Francis, specializes in diabetes care, minimally invasive surgery with a special interest in high risk pregnancy.

Event bridges past, present and future of heart care innovations

Exhibit profiles pioneer cardiac work of Indianapolis African-American physician

INDIANAPOLIS – In observance of American Heart Month and Black History Month, Franciscan St. Francis Health and the Indiana Historical Society (IHS) are hosting an event Wednesday, Feb. 27, focused on the past and future of heart care.

Annually, heart disease is the number-one killer in our country for both men and women. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that heart disease accounts for one in every three deaths, an estimated 2,200 every day.

With research indicating 80 percent of heart disease is preventable, Franciscan St. Francis physicians are passionate about preventing and curing heart disease. Symptoms of heart disease, when they do occur, may include shortness of breath, heart murmurs, severe swelling, heart palpitations, chest pain, fainting, frequent falls, fatigue and/or decreased endurance.

The event, which is free and open to the public, gets under way at 5:30 p.m. with a reception in the Eugene and Marilyn Glick Indiana History Center, 450 West Ohio St. Guests can enjoy an intimate viewing of one of IHS’s living history exhibits,You Are There 1939: Healing Bodies, Changing Minds, which offers a window into  the career of African-American physician Harvey Middleton, MD, one of Indiana’s leading cardiologists and innovators in the field of electrocardiography in the early 20th century.

At 6:30 p.m., world-renowned cardiovascular surgeon Marc Gerdisch, MD, will discuss the treatment of heart disease, heart murmurs and the latest the therapies for heart disease during the “Ask the Doctor” Program.

Gerdisch is the chief of cardiovascular and thoracic surgery at the St. Francis Heart Center, a partner of Cardiac Surgery Associates and the surgical director of the Heart Valve Center and Atrial Fibrillation Center at Franciscan St. Francis Health.  He is an independent physician who chooses to practice at Franciscan St. Francis Health, and has presented nationally and internationally on new technology in cardiac surgery and surgical treatment of heart disease.

Qualifying attendees will be able to sign up for a free echocardiogram at a later date at Franciscan St. Francis Health, a $500 value.

To sign up for the event and learn about living a heart healthy life, call 1-877-888-1777 or register online at
Attendance is free, but registration is required because seating is limited.  

Whisper Hearing Centers partners with Franciscan St. Francis Health for audiology services

INDIANAPOLIS – Whisper Hearing Centers is proud to announce its new partnership with Franciscan St. Francis Health for audiology services.

The audiologists at Whisper Hearing Centers are highly-trained and experienced in the testing, diagnosis and treatment of hearing loss. Whisper offers comprehensive evaluations including pure-tone testing and bone-conduction. Additionally, they provide auditory brainstem response testing and vestibular evaluation.

Whisper Hearing Centers has been providing quality hearing healthcare to Indianapolis and surrounding areas for more than 35 years. Their mission is to provide the best hearing healthcare possible to each of our patients throughout Indiana and continue to deliver the medical expertise and attention our patients’ hearing deserves. Whisper Hearing Center offers 17 convenient locations throughout Indiana, each staffed by a certified audiologist that holds a master’s or doctorate degree in audiology.

“We believe that this partnership will continue our service to our customers and be of the highest quality, while still providing the personal care that our patients have been accustomed to,” said Robert Whalen, PT, PhD, director of rehabilitation services for Franciscan St. Francis Health.

“One in 10 Americans suffer from hearing loss and it now ranks 3rd in public health issues in America today”, said Mary Mungovan, MA, CCC-A, audiologist at Whisper Hearing Center. “This statistic is powerful and so is our partnership with Franciscan St. Francis Health, which allows us to reach out to even more individuals with hearing loss so they can receive treatment,” she added. “One of our goals is to raise awareness about the dramatic effects hearing loss can have on a person and their quality of life and provide them with the expertise in finding a hearing solution,” she said.

For more information about Whisper Hearing Centers’ services and locations or to make an appointment, call (317) 865-2337 or visit their website at

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Physician establishes new practice with McFarland Gynecologic Specialists

He most previously was in private practice in the Indianapolis area and had been a physician partner with Beech Grove Obstetrics and Gynecology/Women’s Health Partnership. He has been affiliated with Franciscan St. Francis Health many years.

Wisler received a bachelor of science in pharmacy at the University of Florida and was a registered pharmacist when he began his studies in medical sciences at Florida State University. He later earned his medical degree at Creighton University School of Medicine.
He completed residency training in obstetrics and gynecology at the University of Cincinnati,  Cincinnati General Hospital.

He served on active duty with the U.S. Navy and was a physician with the Naval Reserve Medical Corps, achieving the rank of lieutenant commander.

McFarland Gynecologic Specialists is located at 7825 McFarland Lane, Suite B, Indianapolis. For more information, call 317-889-5456.

Physician establishes new practice with McFarland Internal Medicine

INDIANAPOLIS – Patricia Lewis Wisler, MD, PhD, has joined Franciscan Physician Network McFarland Internal Medicine.

Long affiliated with Franciscan St. Francis Health, she most previously operated an independent practice as an internist in Indianapolis. Prior to that, she was an assistant scientist and research associate at the Krannert Institute of Cardiology at the Indiana University School of Medicine.

Wisler received an undergraduate degree in chemistry from Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College, where she was an honors student. She completed graduate work in medical biochemistry at the University of Minnesota and later received a doctorate at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine. She earned her medical degree at the Indiana University School of Medicine, where she also completed an internal medicine residency.

Widely published in professional and research journals, Wisler has served on the Saint-Mary-of-the-Woods College Board of Trustees and on community and parish boards.

Located at 7825 McFarland Lane, Suite B, McFarland Internal Medicine is an internal medicine practice serving adult patients.

Franciscan Alliance selects strategic planning, business development leader

MISHAWAKA, Ind.  – Jay Brehm has been appointed senior vice president of Strategic Planning and Business Development for Franciscan Alliance.

Brehm has been with the organization for 28 years and currently hold the positions of Executive Vice president and Chief Financial Officer for Franciscan St. Francis Health (Central Region for Franciscan Alliance), which operates hospitals in Indianapolis, Mooresville and Carmel.

In his new role, Brehm will focus on strategy, business and market development and managed care initiatives for all 13 hospitals owned and operated by Franciscan Alliance.

An Indianapolis resident, Brehm received his undergraduate degree in accounting from Ball State University, where he later earned a master’s in business administration.

A Fellow of the Healthcare Financial Management Association, Brehm has served on various healthcare service companies' boards, including chairman of Sagamore Health Network and Advantage HMO. He also has served on the finance committee for the Archdiocese of Indianapolis and has been active in Catholic Youth Organization baseball programs.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Franciscan St. Francis Health plans new medical office in downtown Columbus

COLUMBUS, Ind. – Franciscan St. Francis Health hopes to formally join the community of Columbus by building a physician office facility later this year.

“As our health system expands its role and responsibilities through the new model of health care into Accountable Care Organizations and population health management, it is fundamentally sound, efficient and expected that we provide expert resources in convenient locations for the many populations we serve,” said Robert J. Brody, Franciscan St. Francis president and chief executive officer.  “The new medical office facility would be a logical extension of that care, and we are heartened by the many positive comments regarding our consideration of placement of services in the area.”
Plans call for the renovation of a property at 123 2nd St. on the city’s west side. The refurbished facility would house two Franciscan St. Francis physicians, five medical assistants and an office manager. The complex later could be expanded for use by another physician, an imaging technician and other medical assistants.

There are a number of factors that will influence the project’s path, including a consideration of tax abatement by the community. The first hearing on such abatement has been postponed for more evaluation.

Franciscan St. Francis Health has welcomed and treated patients from the Columbus area for decades, especially in specialties such as heart and cancer care. As it is the regional tertiary center in the south-central Indiana, the hospital will provide that care long into the future for those who choose its services and physicians.

The location also would provide closer and more convenient access for Columbus-area patients who frequently are treated at Franciscan St. Francis-Indianapolis at 8111 S. Emerson Ave.

Construction could get under way as early as spring 2013 with completion expected in late fall.

Franciscan St. Francis Health appoints new imaging services chief

INDIANAPOLIS – Jillian J. Boerstler has been appointed director of imaging services for Franciscan St. Francis Health.

In that role Boerstler will oversee imaging services at all Franciscan St. Francis’ hospitals in Indianapolis, Mooresville, Carmel and six outpatient imaging centers. She succeeds Terri Ruff, who was appointed executive director for Franciscan St. Francis Heart Center earlier this year.

Boerstler previously was manager of clinical operations at Franciscan St. James Health, where she led clinical service lines at a 410-bed, two-campus hospital system in the south Chicago suburban area. Among those services were ambulance services, bariatric surgery, diabetes, disaster preparedness, emergency medical services, endocrinology, occupational medicine, outpatient dietetics, wound care, inpatient dialysis and inpatient hospice care.

She has been part of  Franciscan Alliance for more than 10 years, serving stints as a corporate buyer and contract analyst. Previously, she led youth ministry programming with the Diocese of Fort Wayne and South Bend.

Certified in Catholic Healthcare Ethics and Healthcare Leadership-Disaster Preparedness, Boerstler was an honors graduate at Saint. Mary’s College/Notre Dame University, and received her undergraduate degree in philosophy and theology. She later earned a master’s of public affairs-health care administration policy at Indiana University. She currently is working on a master’s in Catholic bioethics at Holy Apostles Seminary (Connecticut).

Boerstler is a member of Pi Alpha Alpha (National Honor Society for Public Administration) and Theta Alpha Kappa (National Honor Society for Religious Studies) and holds a Black Belt in Lean Six Sigma, a set of tools and strategies for process improvement.

She’s a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives, Chicago Health Executives Forum and active in church and community activities.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

‘Emotional eating’ support on menu at St. Francis Weight Loss Center

INDIANAPOLIS – Occasional “emotional eating” isn't a problem for most people. After all, that's what makes comfort food so appealing. But turning to food every time a person has unpleasant feelings – or even positive ones – can lead to weight gain.

Emotional eaters may find it difficult to stop on their own. Finding a support group for people dealing with similar issues can provide guidance for dealing with emotional eating.

The Emotional Eating Support Group at the Franciscan St. Francis Weight Loss Center is for anyone trying to lose weight and struggling with emotional overeating, also known as compulsive overeating or binge eating. This group offers support to patients struggling with emotional eating, or using food for reasons other than physical hunger and feeling unable to stop the behavior.

The latest session gets under way 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 12, with each session held weekly at the Weight Loss Center, 5230-A E. Stop 11 Road, across Stop 11 Road from the St. Francis Health-Indianapolis campus.

There is a $60 fee for those registering for the program. Call 317-528-7525 or visit for additional information.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Cardiologist to discuss diagnosis, new treatments for irregular heart rhythms

GREENWOOD, Ind. -- More than 2.2 million Americans have been diagnosed with atrial fibrillation (Afib), a condition where the heart beats irregularly at a high rate that can lead to heart failure and stroke.

Cardiologist John Moore III, MD, of the Franciscan St. Francis Heart Center will discuss new medications and approaches to diagnosis and new ground-breaking treatment options that can eliminate Afib. In addition, he will explain what happens to a heart with Afib and how cardiologists and surgeons work together at Franciscan St. Francis Heart Center to create individualized treatment plans for patients.

The free event will be Tuesday, Feb. 19 at 6:30 p.m. located at the White River Public Library, 1664 Library Blvd. in Greenwood.

Moore, a member of Franciscan Physician Network Indiana Heart Physicians, is board-certified in internal medicine and cardiovascular disease by the American Board of Internal Medicine. He specializes in clinical cardiac electrophysiology.

To register, call 317-782-4422, or go on-line