News Center

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Routine safety measures prevent youngsters’ heat-related deaths

INDIANAPOLIS – The tragedy continues to happen, even to the most doting parents: a young child, left inside a car during hot weather, dies of heat stroke.

“Even the best parents can get distracted and forget to check a back seat,” said Lori Warner, RN, director of Women & Children’s Services at Franciscan St. Francis Health. “The key is to know the dangers and adopt safe practices when traveling with children.”

In warm weather, a child’s body temperature raises three to five times faster than an adult’s. That, paired with the quickly rising temperature inside a vehicle – even when windows are partially rolled down – can be a dangerous combination.

The key, said Warner, is to have a plan.

“The best safety measure you can take as a parent is to develop a routine around checking the car – inside and out – before you leave it,” she said.

Here are some tips from, an advocacy group that promotes a “Look before you lock” campaign to prevent these kinds of deaths:

·        Never leave children alone in or around cars, not even for a minute.
·        Put your cell phone, purse, briefcase, etc., on the floor of the back seat.
·        Keep a large stuffed animal in the child’s seat when it’s not occupied. Move it to the front seat when your child is traveling with you. Use this visual reminder to prompt you to check the back seat when you leave the car.
·        When a child is missing, check vehicles and car trunks immediately.
·        Use drive-thru services when available when doing errands.
·        Make sure all child passengers have left the vehicle after it is parked.

If you see a child alone in a hot vehicle, call 911 or your local emergency number immediately. If the child is in distress due to heat, get them out as quickly as possible. Cool the child rapidly (not an ice bath but by spraying them with coo water or with a garden hose).

Visit or for more information.

Hospice program helps grieving kids cope with loss

INDIANAPOLIS – Death is a part of the life cycle, and it’s especially difficult for children to grasp and make sense out of it.
That’s why Franciscan Visiting Nurse Service at St. Francis Hospice offers Caterpillar Kids, a free support program that offers learning experiences for children ages 5 to 12 who have experienced the loss of a loved one.
“Children do grieve and they may express it differently than adults, but their feelings are as genuine and essential in healing,” said spiritual bereavement counselor Roberta White. “Caterpillar Kids brings children together in a safe, nurturing environment where they receive information about grief and learn healthy ways to cope with the death of a loved one.”
The program will offer its Fall Caterpillar Kids series Wednesdays on Sept, 17 and Sept. 24, and Oct. 1 and Oct. 8. The free sessions meet from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. Registration is required.
Meetings are at Christ United Methodist Church, 8540 U.S. 31 South, one mile north of Greenwood Park Mall.
Led by staff trained in bereavement support for children, youngsters participate in storytelling, art projects, games and other sharing opportunities. Parents also are invited to participate in a concurrent session to assist them in supporting their children.

To register or for more information about Caterpillar Kids, call 317-528-2092, or toll free at 1-800-390-9915.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Southside OBGYN adds third physician at Mooresville

MOORESVILLE, Ind. – Virginia Takagi, MD, of Southside OBGYN, is accepting new patients at Franciscan St. Francis Health-Mooresville.

She joins Glenn Dobbs, DO, and Michael Boothe, MD, at the hospital’s Women’s Center, located at 1205 Hadley Road. Takagi practices both obstetrics and gynecology and has special interests in adolescent care, high-risk pregnancies and minimally invasive surgery.

As an established Bargersville resident, Takagi has been in practice since 2012.

She received her undergraduate degree in zoology at Brigham Young University, where she was presented with the Excellence in Chemistry Teaching award. She earned her medical degree at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry and completed an obstetrics and gynecology residency at the Indiana University School of Medicine.

Southside OBGYN has nine physicians, who provide care in all aspects of women’s health, including obstetrics, gynecology, menopause, urogynecology and robotic surgery.

Women & Children's Services at Mooresville includes Cherished Beginnings, which features 13 private labor, delivery, recovery and postpartum care rooms, two caesarean surgical suites and a Level II neonatal nursery. It also has immediate access to the Level III neonatal intensive care unit at Franciscan St. Francis’ Indianapolis campus – the only unit of its kind in south-central Indiana.

Franciscan St. Francis Health-Mooresville is the only hospital to offer full service, highly personalized labor and delivery services in Morgan County.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Franciscan St. Francis Health receives high marks in magazine's annual listings

INDIANAPOLIS – Several clinical programs at Franciscan St. Francis Health’s Indianapolis and Mooresville hospitals are in the limelight for excellence, according to U.S. News & World Report, which today (July 15) released its 2014-15 Best Regional Hospital rankings.

The Indianapolis campus is ranked fifth overall in Indiana and high-performing in gastroenterology and gastroenterology surgery, geriatrics, gynecology, nephrology, neurology and neurosurgery and pulmonology.

The Mooresville campus was ranked 13th overall in the state and its orthopedics program was recognized as high-performing.

Both hospitals ranked well above the state and national averages in patient satisfaction.

“Our physicians, nurses and support staff continually work to improve clinical processes while using their extensive knowledge, experience and skills to ensure better outcomes and superior care for our patients,” said Robert J. Brody, regional president and chief executive officer for Franciscan St. Francis. “We’re pleased their efforts have been recognized.”
Brody also acknowledged the many achievements earned by other clinical service lines, particularly the award-winning cardiovascular program. Franciscan St. Francis was recognized by Consumer Reports (August 2014) as among the best in Indiana for heart bypass surgery.
This year’s Best Regional Hospitals rankings showcase more than 720 of the nation’s 5,000 hospitals.
“The data tell the story – a hospital that emerged from our analysis as one of the best has much to be proud of,” says U.S. News Health Rankings Editor Avery Comarow. “A Best Hospital has demonstrated its expertise in treating the most challenging patients.”

This marks the third consecutive year both the Indianapolis and Mooresville hospitals have been singled out as high-performing by the national magazine. 

Monday, July 14, 2014

Hospitalist establishes practice with Indiana Heart Physicians

INDIANAPOLIS – Louis F. Landman, MD, has joined Franciscan Physician Network Indiana Heart Physicians (IHP).

He is the first to be part of the newly established Cardiovascular Hospitalist Program, which teams Landman with back-up interventional cardiologists to admit and consult on patients overnight. Hospitalists specialize in the care of patients in the hospital. 

IHP created the program to make its cardiologists more available to Franciscan St. Francis Heart Center patients during day time hours. This approach improves continuity of care for patients who have been admitted overnight.

Landman most recently served as a hospitalist with Bluffton Regional Medical Center and also served as director of the hospital’s continuing care program and rehabilitation services.

A resident of Indianapolis, Landman received his undergraduate degree at Indiana University and earned his medical degree from St. George’s University School of Medicine, Grenada, West Indies. He completed residency training at St. Vincent Health.

With board-certification in family medicine, and recognition of focused practice hospital medicine, Landman also has extensive training in advanced cardiac, trauma and pediatric life support. He is a member of the Society of Hospital Medicine, Society of Critical Care Medicine, American Medical Association, Indiana State Medical Association and the American Academy of Family Physicians.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Nurses lauded for exemplary patient care

INDIANAPOLIS – Four nurses at Franciscan St. Francis Health-Indianapolis have been praised by patients and peers for going above-and-beyond the call in caregiving.

Registered nurses Cynthia Storm, Michael Rodriguez, Jaime Frank and Lindsey Gridley are the most recent recipients of DAISY Awards, a national program that honors compassionate care and clinical excellence.

Storm, who works in the emergency department, was cited for her “incredible compassion” for the family of a young teen who succumbed to cardiac arrest in her unit. She crafted hand molds of the child as a keepsake for the mother. “Cynthia continued to extend compassion care for the grieving family after the care of the patient had ended and still managed her other duties.”

Rodriguez, a member of the orthopedics/neurology unit, was lauded by a family member of a man being treated for lung and brain cancer. “He took the time to explain what we could expect during treatment. His kindness to my brother was so touching and he was consistently respectful and professional, even taking the time to check in with all of us when he was assigned to other patients.”

Frank was nominated by a patient in the labor and delivery unit, who wrote: “Jaime brought a new sense of energy in the final hours before my son was born. When it came time to deliver, she was exactly what I needed – supportive, encouraging and straight forward not only to me but my family, too.”

Gridley, a critical care unit team member, was cited by a colleague for going all out in meeting the needs of all of her patients, often in the most fundamental ways. “She makes sure all of her patients who aren’t on ventilators have their teeth brushed twice a day, even doing it for them when they are unable to. She’s an amazing nurse and advocate.”

The DAISY Award was established by the DAISY Foundation in memory of J. Patrick Barnes who died at 33 of an auto-immune disease. His family was so impressed by the clinical skills, caring and compassion of the nurses who cared for him that they created this national award to say “thank you” to nurses everywhere.

Franciscan St. Francis Health adopted the program in 2010 to recognize its nurses for their achievements.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Environmental Services team sweeps rigorous certification evaluation

INDIANAPOLIS – Franciscan St. Francis Health has earned “best of the best” for its environmental services operations at its Indianapolis and Mooresville hospitals.

ISSA – The Worldwide Cleaning Industry Association – has awarded Franciscan St. Francis Cleaning Industry Management Standard (CIMS) certification with honors. It is the first self-performed, non-governmental hospital in the United States to receive this distinction. 

There are roughly 70,000 building service contractors in the United States and only 200 have achieved this certification.

“I welcome Franciscan St. Francis Health Environmental Services to a very elite group of CIMS organizations that have made a commitment to be one of the best of the best cleaning organizations and leaders changing how the world views cleaning,” said Bruce Stark, who conducted on-site assessments of the Indianapolis and Mooresville hospitals.

Among the best-practice standards Franciscan St. Francis had to demonstrate: quality systems, service delivery, human resources, health, safety, and environmental stewardship, “green building” and management commitment

The report commended the leadership of Environmental Services Director Mel Garrett and Sister Martha Ann Reich, who has championed the hospital’s housekeeping, recycling and “green” efforts.

“We are proud of our Environmental Services staff because they truly do operate professionally and as a team to provide a clean and safe environment for our patients, visitors and their fellow employees,” said Sister Martha Ann. “Certainly, achieving CIMS was aligned with our health care mission and values.”

The road to this prestigious recognition began a few years ago when Sister Martha Ann and former ES Director Margaret Ferry, attended meetings hosted by the Indiana Chapter of International Executive Housekeeping Association (IEHA). 

Daniel Wagner, director of facility service programs for ISSA, presented the initial CIMS guidelines to the Indiana Chapter members.  Bill Fisher, a CIMS-certified member and vice president of facility solutions at Flex Pac, which provides and distributes cleaning supplies and floor care maintenance services, was a helpful mentor, hospital officials said.

Garrett and Sister Martha Ann are quick to credit the hospital’s leadership and all departments as playing vital roles in the certification process.

“It was in every sense an all-hands effort,” said Garrett.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

National spotlight shines recognition on Franciscan St. Francis ER

INDIANAPOLIS – Franciscan St. Francis Health’s Indianapolis emergency department has been named a 2014 recipient of the Emergency Nurses Association (ENA) Lantern Award.

The award recognizes a select group of emergency departments demonstrating exceptional practice and innovative performance in the core areas of leadership, practice, education, advocacy and research.
Franciscan St. Francis is one of only 17 hospital EDs nationwide to receive the Lantern Award this year.

“While we have appreciated the wonderful work our ED does, it is particularly gratifying to have that validated by the ENA,” said Susan McRoberts, MSN, senior vice president and chief nursing officer.

In recent years, the hospital established what is called NowER, one of the most streamlined processes in the country, which significantly reduces wait time to be seen by a medical provider in the emergency room.

All EDs are eligible to apply for the Lantern Award, but only a select few meet the highest excellence standards. The rigorous application process requires emergency departments to submit detailed performance metrics, narratives and exemplar responses.

A team of reviewers thoroughly evaluate the submissions through a blinded review process.

The Lantern Award recognition is valid for three years. The emergency team will receive the award at the 2014 ENA Annual Conference in Indianapolis this October.