News Center

Friday, November 21, 2014

Franciscan St. Francis Health physicians listed among Indianapolis’ ‘Top Docs’

INDIANAPOLIS – Twenty-five Franciscan Physician Network doctors have been recognized as “Top Doctors” by Indianapolis Magazine.

They were among the 129 physicians having affiliations and admitting privileges at Franciscan St. Francis Health’s hospitals at Indianapolis, Mooresville and Carmel. The annual listing, which appeared in the magazine’s November issue, represents the upper tier of board-certified physicians in the Indianapolis area.

“We are proud and gratified by this recognition, particularly because it accurately reflects our very high level of performance across a number of departments and specialties,” said Christopher “Topper” Doehring, MD, vice president of medical affairs for Franciscan St. Francis. “This is a testament of our extremely talented medical staff who continually strive to provide the best, highest quality care for all patients.”

The report also included a small feature on Dipen Maun, MD, of the Franciscan Physician Network Kendrick Colon & Rectal Center, whose work with single incision colon surgery. That work is a breakthrough in laparoscopic procedures.

For a full listing of the 129 physicians, click HERE.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

New procedure takes aim at knocking the wind out of severe asthma

Franciscan St. Francis Health offers breakthrough treatment option for patients

INDIANAPOLIS – Imagine trying to breathe through a straw, struggling and gasping day in and day out. That’s how many patients feel who suffer from severe asthma.
Franciscan St. Francis Health now offers these patients new hope for better control of their asthma.

It’s called Bronchial Thermoplasty, an outpatient procedure approved for the treatment of severe asthma in patients 18 years and older whose condition is not well controlled with inhaled corticosteroids and long-acting bronchodilators.

Bronchial Thermoplasty can be life-changing for patients, dramatically improving their quality of life,” said Faisal Khan, MD, interventional pulmonologist at Franciscan St. Francis. 
It can help reduce the frequency of asthma attacks, emergency room visits and hospitalizations and days missed from work due to symptoms of asthma.”

Asthma, a chronic lung disease with no cure, commonly causes recurring periods of wheezing, chest tightness, shortness of breath and coughing. When triggered, severe asthma causes the airways in the lungs to narrow, leading to the onset of an asthma attack.

This new approach is performed using bronchoscopy, a minimally invasive procedure in which a bronchoscope is inserted into the airways through the mouth. The procedure uses a catheter-like device to deliver thermal energy (heat) to the airway wall in order to reduce excessive airway smooth muscle. This decreases the constriction of the airways and reduces the frequency and severity of asthma attacks.
“This procedure is unique because for the first time severe asthma can be treated in a physical way, attacking the problem at its source – the lungs,” said Dr. Khan. "Currently patients with severe, persistent asthma are treated using high doses of medication and many still continue to suffer from frequent asthma attacks."
Bronchial Thermoplasty is performed in three outpatient visits, which are typically scheduled at least three weeks apart. While not a cure for asthma, it works with asthma maintenance medications to provide long-lasting asthma control and improved asthma-related quality of life.


Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Franciscan St. Francis Health earns national recognition for stroke treatment

INDIANAPOLIS – Franciscan St. Francis Health has received the Get With The Guidelines Stroke Silver-Plus Quality Achievement Award for implementing specific quality improvement measures outlined by the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association for the treatment of stroke patients.
     
Get With The Guidelines—Stroke helps hospitals to provide the most up-to-date, research-based guidelines with the goal of speeding recovery and reducing death and disability for stroke patients. The hospital’s neurology and neurosurgery teams earned the award by meeting specific quality achievement measures for the rapid diagnosis and treatment of stroke patients at a set level for a designated period. 

These measures include aggressive use of medications and risk-reduction therapies aimed at reducing death and disability and improving the lives of stroke patients.      
     
“We are dedicated to improving the quality of stroke care and The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines–Stroke award helps us achieve that goal,” said Chris DiGiusto, Neuroscience Service Line Leader at Franciscan St. Francis Health. “This award recognizes our commitment to ensure that our patients receive care based on internationally respected clinical guidelines.”
     
 “We are pleased to recognize Franciscan St. Francis for its commitment and dedication to stroke care,” said Deepak L. Bhatt, MD, MPH, national chairman of the Get With The Guidelines steering committee and executive director of Interventional Cardiovascular Programs at Brigham and Women's Hospital and professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School.

Get With The Guidelines–Stroke also helps Franciscan St. Francis’ staff implement prevention measures, which include educating stroke patients to manage their risk factors, and to be aware of warning signs for stroke, and ensuring they take their medications properly. Hospitals can make customized patient education materials available upon discharge, based on the patients’ individual risk profiles. The take-away materials are written in an easy-to-understand format in either English or Spanish.        
     

According to the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, stroke is the number four cause of death and a leading cause of adult disability in the United States.  On average, someone suffers a stroke every 40 seconds; someone dies of a stroke every four minutes; and 795,000 people suffer a new or recurrent stroke each year.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Franciscan St. Francis Health sets PACE by offering health care options to seniors

INDIANAPOLIS – Imagine a community-based health program providing a range of services to seniors who might otherwise need nursing home level care.

That’s exactly what Franciscan Alliance will soon be delivering to local seniors through the Franciscan Senior Health & Wellness – PACE program.  PACE (Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly) is a Medicare program for adults age 55 and older and having chronic care needs. PACE is a national program, and Franciscan Senior Health & Wellness will offer the first of its kind in Indiana.

The PACE Center, located at the intersection of Southport and Franklin roads on the city’s far south side, will be formally opened to participants in early January 2015. The program was created as a way to provide area seniors, family members, caregivers and professional health care providers with flexibility to meet consumers’ health needs and continue living in the community.

“The PACE model is the day center, where participants receive therapy, medical care and social services,” said PACE Director Susan Waschevski. “PACE also supports caregivers with training, support groups and respite care to help families keep their loved ones in their homes and the community.

An interdisciplinary team of caregivers and specialists, led by Nicolas Priscu, MD, will design individualized plans of care for each PACE participant. The team includes a registered nurse, social worker, dietitian, physical and occupational therapists, activity coordinator and others.

“PACE provides a centralized location and a focused, coordinated care approach,” Dr. Priscu said.

PACE provides all of the care and the services covered by Medicare and Medicaid – as authorized by the team – as well as additionally medically necessary care and services not covered by Medicare and Medicaid. The coverage includes:
·        Prescription drugs
·        Physician care
·        Therapy
·        Transportation
·        Home care checkups
·        Hospital visits
·        Nursing home stays when necessary

Participation in PACE is voluntary and available to eligible people across the financial spectrum. All Medicare-covered services are paid for individuals who qualify for Medicare. Medicaid-covered participants will pay nothing for the long-term portion of the PACE benefit.
In addition, participants must meet Indiana eligibility requirements for nursing home care, are able to live  safely at home, must be 55 years or older and live within the Franciscan Senior Health & Wellness Service area. 


In advance of the formal opening of the PACE facility, Franciscan St. Francis will host an open house, Tuesday, Nov. 18, from 4 to 6 p.m. Visitors will be able to tour the 11,000-square-foot and meet the staff.

Franciscan St. Francis Health Reaccredited as Bariatric Surgery Center of Excellence

INDIANAPOLIS – Franciscan St. Francis Health-Indianapolis has achieved renewal as a Center of Excellence® (COE) by the American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS).

As part of the ASMBS, facilities are required to maintain standards set by the Metabolic Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program (MBSAQIP), the unified program between the American College of Surgeons and the ASMBS. Recertification occurs every three years.

This review process confirms that all Center of Excellence programs, new and existing, continue to meet the evidence-based quality thresholds determined by expert physicians and medical organizations. It also provides an opportunity to improve the overall quality of care by requiring all Centers to meet criteria that keep pace with ongoing advances in clinical practice.

In the United States, more than 15 million people suffer from severe obesity, and the numbers continue to rise. Obesity increases the risks of morbidity and mortality because of the diseases and conditions that are commonly associated with it, including type II diabetes, hypertension and cardiovascular disease. 

Weight-loss surgery currently is one successful way to provide lasting relief from severe obesity.

Founded in 2002, the Franciscan St. Francis Weight Loss Center has helped thousands of Hoosiers through its medically supervised weight loss program and its bariatric surgery program.

The center, which was first accredited as a bariatric center of excellence in 2007, includes five physicians, registered dietitians, a nurse practitioner and a staff psychologist.

For more information on weight loss services through Franciscan St. Francis Health and Franciscan Physician Network, call 317-528-7525 or visit embracealighterfuture.com.

Franciscan St. Francis Health sets PACE by offering health care options to seniors

INDIANAPOLIS – Imagine a community-based health program providing a range of services to seniors who might otherwise need nursing home level care.

That’s exactly what Franciscan Alliance will soon be delivering to local seniors through the Franciscan Senior Health & Wellness – PACE program.  PACE (Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly) is a Medicare program for adults age 55 and older and having chronic care needs. PACE is a national program, and Franciscan Senior Health & Wellness will offer the first of its kind in Indiana.

The PACE Center, located at the intersection of Southport and Franklin roads on the city’s far south side, will be formally opened to participants in early January 2015. The program was created as a way to provide area seniors, family members, caregivers and professional health care providers with flexibility to meet consumers’ health needs and continue living in the community.

“The PACE model is the day center, where participants receive therapy, medical care and social services,” said PACE Director Susan Waschevski. “PACE also supports caregivers with training, support groups and respite care to help families keep their loved ones in their homes and the community.

An interdisciplinary team of caregivers and specialists, led by Nicolas Priscu, MD, will design individualized plans of care for each PACE participant. The team includes a registered nurse, social worker, dietitian, physical and occupational therapists, activity coordinator and others.

“PACE provides a centralized location and a focused, coordinated care approach,” Dr. Priscu said.

PACE provides all of the care and the services covered by Medicare and Medicaid – as authorized by the team – as well as additionally medically necessary care and services not covered by Medicare and Medicaid. The coverage includes:
·        Prescription drugs
·        Physician care
·        Therapy
·        Transportation
·        Home care checkups
·        Hospital visits
·        Nursing home stays when necessary

Participation in PACE is voluntary and available to eligible people across the financial spectrum. All Medicare-covered services are paid for individuals who qualify for Medicare. Medicaid-covered participants will pay nothing for the long-term portion of the PACE benefit.

In addition, participants must meet Indiana eligibility requirements for nursing home care, are able to live  safely at home, must be 55 years or older and live within the Franciscan Senior Health & Wellness Service area. 

In advance of the formal opening of the PACE facility, Franciscan St. Francis will host an open house, Tuesday, Nov. 18, from 4 to 6 p.m. Visitors will be able to tour the 11,000-square-foot and meet the staff.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Franciscan St. Francis Health, Indy YMCA unveil plans for Downtown CityWay

Topping-off, beam-signing ceremony for facility slated for Dec. 4

INDIANAPOLIS – Two of the city’s health-focused organizations have forged a partnership to deliver a variety of medical and wellness programs to residents in Downtown Indianapolis.

Franciscan St. Francis Health and YMCA of Greater Indianapolis have unveiled plans which enable the hospital to lease 13,000 square feet at CityWay at 430 S. Alabama St. The adjoining YMCA complex is under development as part of a three-story, 87,000-square-foot project.

The hospital will provide primary and specialty care physicians’ services, imaging, lab and therapy programs. One advantage of the partnership is that rehabilitation patients will have access to the YMCA’s state-of-the-art equipment and pool for aquatic therapy.

“This is an excellent collaboration with the YMCA, and it offers a unique opportunity for both of our organizations,” said Robert J. Brody, president and chief executive officer for Franciscan St. Francis. “This innovative and new environment will bring a whole new world of health and wellness to those who live and work in vibrant Downtown Indianapolis.”

“We are fortunate to be working with an organization whose goals and objectives align with the YMCA’s,” said Eric Ellsworth, president and chief executive officer for YMCA of Greater Indianapolis. “Through this partnership we hope to not only improve the health of the individuals we serve but also assist with preventive measures so that those in our community can maintain healthy lifestyles for years to come.”

Brody and Ellsworth and other guests will be on hand for a topping-off ceremony at 8:30 a.m., Thursday, Dec. 4. That event marks the placement of the top steel beam atop the YMCA structure.

When completed in late 2015, the YMCA project will consist of two indoor swimming pools, three gyms, an elevated running track, wellness center, cardiovascular and strength equipment and a culinary studio to teach individuals and families how to prepare healthy meals.


Franciscan St. Francis Health is expected to open its medical offices in January 2016. The CityWay project marks the hospital’s most recent effort to establish a larger presence in the downtown area.