Community Healthcare System Hospitals earn Accolades for Infant, Maternal Care

Community Healthcare System Hospitals earn Accolades for Infant, Maternal Care

Community Hospital, St. Catherine Hospital and St. Mary Medical Center again have been recognized for their commitment to infant and maternal health by the Indiana Hospital Association (IHA).

The Family Birthing Center at Community Hospital in Munster has received the Hospital of Distinction Award for 2022. The Family Birthing Centers at St. Catherine Hospital in East Chicago and St. Mary Medical Center in Hobart each earned the Category of Excellence Award.

The INspire award is based on implementation of best practices in key areas, including infant safe sleep; breastfeeding; tobacco prevention and cessation; perinatal substance abuse; and patient safety initiatives from the Alliance for Innovation on Maternal Health (AIM).

Hospitals attaining the INspire Hospital of Distinction award have met four or five of the 2022 criteria categories. Hospitals achieving a Category of Excellence recognition have met criteria in one, two or three of the categories.

Brittany Waggoner, Maternal and Infant Quality Improvement adviser for IHA, commended the three hospitals for their achievements in a letter announcing their awards.

“In partnership with Governor Eric J. Holcomb and State Health Commissioner Kris Box, M.D., FACOG, we thank you for your continued commitment to infant and maternal health, particularly during this difficult year,” Waggoner said. “Your diligence, self-motivation as well as dedication to go the extra mile to achieve this recognition is admirable.”

Community Healthcare System’s Family Birthing Center healthcare professionals have been leaders in safeguarding infants by putting significant initiatives in place to set standards for healthy pregnancies and programs to give every infant his or her best start in life.

“Our ultimate goal is to improve mother and child wellness and reduce infant mortality numbers,” said Brittany Pankiewicz, Family Birthing Center nurse manager at St. Mary Medical Center. “We take pride in being a leader in giving Hoosier babies the healthiest start possible.”

Carla Meyer, director of Patient Care Services at Community Hospital, said Community Healthcare System hospitals have a strong history of helping mothers and babies succeed in the first year of life.

“A top priority at all of our hospitals is creating brighter futures,” Meyer said. “We succeed through exceptional care and educational initiatives.”

LaTina Ashana, RN, Family Birthing Center nurse manager at St. Catherine Hospital, said teamwork at Community Healthcare System plays a key role in its hospitals’ successful mother/baby programs.

“Our providers and nurses band together to ensure our moms and babies have the best care and guidance to reduce infant mortality,” Ashana said.

For more about healthy beginnings at the Family Birthing Centers of Community Healthcare System, visit