Make your home page

On December 18th, 2020, Community Health Network administered its first COVID-19 vaccine. Since then, the central Indiana-based health network vaccinated a half-million Hoosiers throughout the communities it serves. Through vaccine clinics, physician offices, and outreach clinics at schools, churches, and organizations, Community provides what the CDC (Centers for Disease Control) and other health agencies recommend is the best protection against COVID-19.

“There was a feeling of hope that first day,” recalls Emily Sego, Community Health Network Chief Nurse Executive for Ambulatory services who leads the health system’s vaccine efforts. “People were joyful, happy. We had long lines. People did not mind waiting to get the vaccine.”

More than a year later, amid skepticism, mistrust, and a political divide, Indiana ranks among the lowest for vaccination rates in the nation at 53% of its population vaccinated, according to the CDC.

Now, with a new variant, doctors and health agencies recommend not only getting vaccinated, but also getting a booster shot for those 16 and older.

What makes this surge the most challenging yet is that hospitals across Indiana are experiencing an overflow of both COVID and non-COVID patients. Those hospitalized from COVID-19 tend to be hospitalized for longer, occupying ICU (Intensive Care Unit) beds for longer periods of time than normal, limiting the number of available beds and caregivers for patients. It has even created longer than normal wait times for emergency care.

Community Health Network, Eskenazi Health, and IU Health recently joined together in a plea for the public’s help. In a full-page newspaper ad with the headline that read ‘We can’t do
this alone,’ leaders from the hospital systems explained a ‘dire’ situation and the need for vaccination, boosters, masks, and testing.

Dr. Ram Yeleti, Chief Physician Executive for Community Health Network said, in a video message, there are more patients than beds at Community’s hospitals; and to free up beds, non-emergent surgeries are being delayed.

Health officials, physicians and the CDC agree vaccination is still the safest, most effective protection against COVID-19. A booster is the best defense against the omicron variant of the virus. Wearing masks while in public will help prevent the spread of the virus.

As healthcare workers approach two years since the start of the pandemic, the feelings of joy and hope have been replaced with frustration and exhaustion.

“It takes all of us to educate the greater population why it’s important, “said Sego.” This is our chance and opportunity to heal and come back together and go to work every day and spend time with our family and friends.”

For COVID care options, including more information on vaccines and testing, visit


The holiday season is quickly approaching, and there’s no question that the hustle and bustle can pose health risks, especially as we continue to navigate the ever-evolving COVID-19 landscape.

Dr. Syeda Amna Husain, MD, board-certified concierge pediatrician, joined us today with some timely tips for staying COVID-cautious.

She has teamed up with Abbott to tell us about their BinaxNOW Self Test, a COVID-19 test that can be done at home as families look to keep themselves and their children healthy over the next few months.

For more information visit,


If you’re considering some upcoming travel, we want to be the ones to get you fully prepared! Today we were joined by Katie Awwad, travel agent with Magnified Vacation Cruiseone. She planned Annessa’s family vacation from start to finish, and knows tons of travel secrets! Here are a few from her:

1) Have a plan even more now!

Know the restrictions of the area you are traveling to. Find out what is open. What is needed for you to get there? Do you need a covid test prior? Do you get covid tested to travel back home?Testing is huge for oversea travel.There are some all inclusive resorts that are offering free testing prior to leaving. That is super helpful because if not then you need to find a place in a foreign land!

Even if driving you need to know what each state restrictions are. Traveling with kids you have to know when you can stop and let them go the bathroom!

If you are doing Disney then know everything that is needed. Park reservations are a must! This is why you need an agent! They will help you!

2) Book early!

Because of restrictions on hotels ( cheaper hotels at disney or the ones that sleep 5), park attendance ( hint Epcot and Animal Kingdom are only park open for spring break now) and restrictions on accommodations ( Disney Dinning)  you need to book early. Slim chance if you can make a last minute trip work especially for Disney. There are so many moving parts and limited capacity. Once things are filled up then you have missed out. People are eager to start traveling so things are booking up faster than normal. Private condos or cabins are really selling out fast.

3) BUY travel protection!

I can not guarantee that whatever happens will be covered but having protection is worth it. These trips are an investment. You need to protect that and the what ifs. I am now requiring my clients that cruise and do international travel to buy protection. We learned the hard way in 2020.

4) Be flexible!

There are so many things that are unpredictable. Booking a trip plan on changes. Plan on following all the rules at the given location. Those restrictions will change! Plan to look at restrictions a week before your travel again! Things will change! Plan on wearing a mask. Plan on time changes on flights. Plan on not waking up in time for that first bus at Disney making you later to start you day.

For more information visit,

Plasma donation is important to medical research now more than ever to help with potentially treating COVID-19. One company leading the way is Grifols. Vlasta Hakes, director of corporate affairs at Grifols joined us today. Here’s more from her:

Plasma donation is a painless procedure that thousands of people do each day. It is a great way to take a break in the middle of the day while helping others!

All donors receive a thorough health screening at each donation. Once they are screened then they undergo the plasmapheresis process which is where a machine draws the donor’s blood, the plasma is separated from the blood, and the red blood cells are returned.

Since plasma is mostly water plus therapeutic proteins and antibodies, the body quickly regenerates the plasma so a donor can give up to twice a week with a full day between donations.

This is important because we need lots of donations. It takes anywhere for 130 to 1300 donations to make enough medicine to treat just one patient for one year.

So are asking that people take the time to become regular donors.

We recommend that donors eat a healthy meal, drink plenty of fluids, and get a good night of sleep prior to coming in to donate plasma. Once at the center, they can relax, check their phone or catch up on their latest tv show!

The safety of our donors and employees is Grifols number one priority. Grifols has implemented protocols as recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to prevent the spread of COVID-19:

What is Grifols doing to help fight COVID-19?

The plasma of those who have recovered from COVID-19 contain antibodies to the disease and we believe that it can potentially help treat those who currently have or in the future might get COVID-19.

Grifols has acted with urgency during this global crisis by collecting plasma from those who have recovered from COVID-19 at our donor centers across the United States. We want to harness and concentrate these antibodies that are in their plasma to produce a medicine that could potentially treat the disease. We believe, that this medicine, a hyperimmune globulin therapy, can offer predictable and consistent dosing of the antibody against the virus that causes COVID-19. It will also bridge the time while we wait for a vaccine and can also be used alongside a vaccine once there is one. Patients are currently receiving this medicine as part of a clinical trial that we are doing in partnership with the National Institutes of Health and hope to have results soon.

Plasma donation is now important more than ever, whether it is for the medicines already made out of plasma or for potentially treating COVID-19. Donating plasma at one of Grifols’ donor centers is a way people can help make a difference during this exceptional time. We encourage everyone to consider becoming a plasma donor and give some of their plasma to make other lives brighter.

To learn more, visit and