Top 10 health articles on Portage.Life in 2022

Top 10 health articles on Portage.Life in 2022
By: Alayna Wilkening, Ashley Spargo, Aubrey Thomson, Curtis Hankins, Lauren Grasham Last Updated: December 21, 2022

If previous years taught us anything, it’s to prioritize our wellbeing and take care of ourselves through difficult times. Each year brings new stressors and challenges, but being able to take a look at your health and make changes that promote wellness can make all the difference. 

In 2022, we shared news about all sorts of health topics: dental care, mental health, fitness, weight loss, urgent needs, sleep therapy, nutrition, and more. We’re glad to partner with such great organizations, businesses, and healthcare groups to help share the good and keep our Region a healthy one.

In no particular order, here are the top 10 health articles on Portage.Life to recap the good news in 2022!

Franciscan Health Munster adds RUSH Thoracic Surgeons and Auris MONARCH® Robotic Bronchoscopy to Lung Cancer Program

Franciscan Health Cancer Center Munster and RUSH University System for Health (RUSH) have announced a partnership to bring the Chicago-based health system’s nationally-recognized thoracic surgeons to Northwest Indiana. RUSH surgeons will now see patients or perform procedures at the Franciscan Health Munster and Dyer campuses.

The partnership comes as Franciscan Health Munster is adding the new Auris MONARCH® system to its comprehensive lung cancer care. It’s the latest technology in robotic bronchoscopy surgery with the ability to reach small nodules in the lung, helping diagnose lung cancer in the early stage and giving patients the best chance to beat this deadly disease.

Fighting the stigma of obesity with a one of a kind weight loss program

Mustafa Nawaka, MD is bringing a one-of-a-kind weight loss program to the residents of Northwest Indiana. It is structured to manage the complexity of obesity by identifying and treating obesity’s causes, including any hormonal or metabolic imbalance, psychological and environmental factors.

Dr. Nakawa ensures sustainable care by providing access to flexible and convenient appointments. He not only transforms the patient’s relationship with food, but also customizes the care plan to meet their individual needs with a combination of weight loss medications, diets, and exercise plans.

Prenatal Assistance Program supports mothers and babies from educational workshops to first-birthday celebrations

Pregnancy is something that no one should face alone, so for the past 20-25 years, Franciscan has housed a Prenatal Assistance Program in an effort to assist teen mothers and their families. 10-15 years ago, teen pregnancy rates declined, so Franciscan repurposed the program to focus on prenatal and postpartum education.

The Prenatal Assistance Program uses a curriculum founded on evidence-based practices to assist program participants both during and after pregnancy. This program is open for enrollment at any phase of pregnancy through a child’s first birthday.

Portage EDC's Health 360 Program lets high school students explore healthcare field

Portage High School students were given an immersive look into the healthcare field on April 27 when they visited Ivy Tech Community College in Valparaiso to participate in the Portage EDC’s Health 360 program.

The program is designed to help students learn about the many different career options in healthcare through interactive activities and hands-on learning. 

A special message from Northwest Health Chief Executive Officer, Ashley Dickinson

National Hospital Week – May 8 – 14, 2022 — is a wonderful opportunity to thank all of our Northwest Health team members – physicians, nurses, therapists, engineers, care coordinators, dietitians, food service and EVS workers, volunteers and so many more - who support the health and wellbeing of our community. 

Around the clock every day of the year, we are here to help you get well and live healthier, always remembering that Compassionate Caring is Our Calling and that each and every one of our team members is a caregiver in their own special way.

Watch over your baby in the NICU with AngelEye Cameras

When babies need to stay in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), parents wish they could keep an eye on their little ones, which is now possible at Franciscan Health Crown Point. Thanks to generous donors, Franciscan Health Crown Point has installed the AngelEye Health Live Streaming Camera System in the NICU.

With a fair number of patients coming from outside hospitals to the NICU at Franciscan Health Crown Point, getting to see their babies can be a challenge for parents. When parents live far away from the NICU, as many do, transportation is often an issue. This is especially true for mothers who have recently undergone C-sections and are temporarily unable to drive.

Advanced Dental Concepts equips GreatNews.Life’s Jenny Craig-Brown with an upgraded smile

When GreatNews.Life Executive Director Jenny Craig-Brown needed some cosmetic maintenance done on a few teeth, she knew she needed a dentist who specialized in cosmetic dentistry while prioritizing dental health.

She ultimately chose to work with Advanced Dental Concepts, which provided not only excellent results, but an excellent experience from start to finish as well.

NorthShore Health Centers expands Endocrinology Team, offering expert, affordable care for diabetes and more

According to the CDC, more than 37 million Americans – or about one in 10, have diabetes. For the vast majority of those cases, its type 2, which children, teens, and adults of all ages can develop.  It’s often called a silent epidemic, and NorthShore Health Centers is committed to providing the care and resources around the community to address it.

Treating diabetes, thyroid disease, and other hormonal issues is the responsibility of endocrinologists – a team of which NorthShore recently expanded. About a year ago, they brought on an endocrinologist, Dr. Wahid Kassar, part-time to begin their efforts. Around the same time, Patience Tieri, a nurse practitioner, completed her education at Duke University to specialize in endocrinology and earned certification in diabetes management.

Community Healthcare System a proven leader in sepsis awareness, prevention

Last month was Sepsis Awareness Month, but raising awareness about this life-threatening medical emergency is essential year-round according to Lisa Leckrone, director of Quality and Risk Management at St. Mary Medical Center.

“We try to promote sepsis awareness at our facility monthly,” Leckrone said. “We have a campaign called Sock it to Sepsis, where we recognize our nursing staff for early detection and communication with our providers to ensure proper sepsis treatment.”

First-hand testimonies of hope and revival shared at Franciscan Health Crown Point’s Annual Donate Life Month Remembrance Celebration

Though most Americans say they support organ donations, only 54% are registered organ donors.

To recognize National Donate Life Month, Franciscan Health Crown Point hosted a remembrance celebration to recognize the lives donors have saved through their decision to become organ donors.