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Pregnancy becomes lesson in patience, faith and trust in Neonatal Intensive Care staff

Via Christi NICU family Quy and Laura Pham

As a staff gardener who helped plant Botanica's Downing Children's Garden in Wichita, Laura Pham is used to nurturing tiny plants and watching them grow. Her love of gardening stemmed from her time as a young child, planting vegetables alongside her grandmother. 

Her parents had announced her birth as another P has joined the Pennington pod, in a botanical play on words. As a fourth-grader, she knew she wanted a career in botany. 

Wide variety of activities keeps senior resident's calendar full

Via Christi Villages resident Mary Withers

When Mary Withers moved to Via Christi Village on Georgetown in Wichita, she got more than a new address — she also got a full activity calendar.

“A big part of the attraction was that they had a lot going on in different fields,” says the 86-year-old retired college English professor. It was important to find a place where she could make new friends, keep longtime hobbies, try new activities and stay fit physically and mentally, says Mary, whose closest family member is 400 miles away.

TAVR provides options to patients who previously had few if any

TAVR patient Jene Hanes

Sam Hanes uses two words over and over again when talking about the lifesaving heart care his mother received last fall at Ascension Via Christi St. Francis: “amazing” and “awesome.”

“They saved my mother’s life and they enhanced the quality of her life,” says Sam, all but speechless by the change in his 79-year-old mother following the transcatheter aortic valve replacement procedure, or TAVR, she had performed in Via Christi’s hybrid operating room last October. “She’s really bounced back.”

Mercy Regional Health Center fully becomes part of Via Christi

Mercy Regional Health Center has fully joined Ascension Via Christi under a transfer agreement between the Memorial Hospital Association (MHA) and Ascension Via Christi.

Mercy Regional Health Center was formed in 1996 when The Saint Mary Hospital and Memorial Hospital were combined. Since then, Via Christi and the MHA have had a joint 50-50 ownership of Mercy, with Via Christi providing management services.

Under the agreement announced today, the MHA transferred its ownership of Mercy to Ascension Via Christi.

Palliative care brings comfort when there isn’t a cure

Palliative care

Jenae Arbuckle didn’t want to die when she swallowed 40 high-dose painkillers last June.

She just couldn’t see how she could possibly live one more day with the pain.

“I felt helpless and hopeless,” says Jenae, who in 2009 was diagnosed with severe adhesive arachnoiditis, a progressive illness that causes increasingly severe debilitation and excruciating pain.

Mother manages bipolar mood disorder with help from Via Christi Psychiatric Clinic

Via Christi Behavioral Health patient Heidi Iwig

Heidi Iwig has a college degree and a career as a CPR instructor for the American Red Cross. She’s happily married and has a beautiful 1-year-old daughter.

She also lives with bipolar disorder and manages her illness with help from Via Christi Psychiatric Clinic and its medical director, Matthew Macaluso, DO.

“Initially, I didn’t want people to know that I had bipolar because there is a huge stigma out there,” says Heidi, 33. “People are scared because they don’t understand it. I’m tired of the stigma.”

Weight Management program helps mom lose 35 pounds

Weight management patient Dana Rose

Dana Rose, a 50-year-old mother of three and a die-hard Oklahoma Sooners football fan, has more to cheer about these days as she and her husband, Dennis, head for the games.

With the help of the Ascension Via Christi Weight Management, she’s 35 pounds lighter and finally feeling at the top of her game. 

Dana had struggled to keep off the pounds for most of her adult life but finally got serious about weight loss when she had to have a heart catheterization and three stents placed nearly nine years ago.

Pittsburg’s Women’s Center offers parents-to-be compassion and comforts

OB family Joanna and Drew Rhodes

Even as a veteran mom, Joanna Rhodes admits she was nervous when she went to Ascension Via Christi Hospital in Pittsburg to deliver her third child in October.

“The process varies every time,” she says. “There are still nerves and anxiety.”


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