Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Breaking News

MC Weekly

November 13, 2013

RAY MOSCOWITZ: Close guiding Dukes Memorial to notable recognition

Miami Co. hospital among the nation's top 620, nonprofit says.

The little girl who adored the purple capes nurses once wore is now the tough-minded woman who’s successfully leading a progressive hospital.

She’s Debra Ann Close, 58, whose steely professional demeanor in a demanding environment is tempered by the sensitivity in her nursing soul.

Now in her seventh year as the CEO of Dukes Memorial Hospital, Close has guided the facility to notable recognition.

In doing so, she has represented just 12-18 percent of women who are CEOs of America’s 5,724 hospitals, according to a new study in the Journal of Health Care Leadership.

On Oct. 30, Dukes was named one of the nation’s Top Performers on Key Quality Measures — for the third straight year. The award, given to 620 hospitals, is made by The Joint Commission, an independent, not-for-profit organization, which, Close says, is the leading accrediting organization of health care facilities in America.

Dukes was recognized for its achievement on the Pneumonia Measure Set, a set of best practice criteria for the treatment of pneumonia. This involves “evidence-based clinical processes that are shown to improve care for certain conditions,” Close noted.

Dukes, which employs 302 people, is a member of the Lutheran Health Network that serves 23 counties in northeastern Indiana and northwestern Ohio.

In 2008, Dukes and Lutheran Hospital in Fort Wayne jointly developed and implemented a Level 1 Heart Program, a chest pain system that enhances the care for acute heart attack patients, Close explained. The Level 1 is activated when a patient is recognized to be having a heart attack.

Activation can occur from the scene of an emergency or in Dukes’ emergency department.

“The goal is to activate, stabilize, transport and have the blocked vessel open in less than 90 minutes,” Close said. “When a patient is identified, Dukes picks up a phone that automatically connects the hospital with Lutheran Hospital, the first accredited chest pain center in Fort Wayne. The call activates established protocols for acute heart attack patients prior to a patient's actual transfer.”

Text Only | Photo Reprints
MC Weekly
  • RAY MOSCOWITZ: No joke: His life changed forever 50 years ago Do you remember the first major turning point in your life? It’s easy for me: April Fool’s Day, 50 years ago yesterday. At 8:54 a.m. on April 1, 1964, I parked my ’62 Chevy Impala in front of the Sears store on East Clinton Street in Frankfort, Ind.,

    April 2, 2014

  • Our current MC Weekly issue

    October 9, 2013

  • April 2, 2014: Police reports March 24, 1:40 p.m., deputies arrested Cassieopia Rhoads, 19, 200 block of West 6th Street, Peru, on a failure to appear warrant. March 24, 4:40 p.m., police arrested Charmichael Williams Jr., 18, and Lisa M. Hagedorn, 23, both of the 100 block of Ea

    April 2, 2014

  • MCW - 040214 - Brett Bowman column - pic BOWMAN: Grant, Hery back together After a season that saw them go different directions, Justin Grant and Mark Hery have reunited for the 2014 season. In the first event of the season over a month ago at the Bubba Raceway Park in Ocala, Fla., Grant put the Claxton Race Engines/Hery Mo

    April 2, 2014 1 Photo

  • RAY MOSCOWITZ: Ole Olsen has been a Peru gem for 50 seasons When the final curtain drops on “Arsenic and Old Lace,” which runs April 24-27 and May 2-4, it will close the 50th season for Ole Olsen Theater, a Peru gem that deserves oodles of kudos. The first-ever curtain went up in March 1965, when Ole present

    March 26, 2014

  • Miami County Weekly sports briefs Maconaquah board votes to join TRC BUNKER HILL — The Maconaquah school board voted 5-0 last week in favor of having the Braves join the Three Rivers Conference, beginning in the 2015-16 school year. The Braves join fellow Miami County school Peru in

    March 26, 2014

  • March 26, 2014: Police reports March 17, 3:45 p.m., deputies arrested Jordan A. Cook, 23, 70 block of West 5th Street, Peru, on a probation violation warrant. March 17, 7:05 p.m., state police arrested William B. Stoller, 19, Elkhart, on a charge of possession of marijuana. March

    March 26, 2014

  • Farming exhibit at museum 4 A farming community It was in the 1880s when farming started shifting from old pioneer techniques that relied on hand tools to new-fangled machines like the steel plow, two-row cultivator and thresher. It’s also the time new scientific research recommended a crazy idea

    March 19, 2014 8 Photos

  • RAY MOSCOWITZ: Stepfather was inspiration for Peru trailblazer She remembers seeing him in his uniform and listening to the scanner while he was working. She wished she could be with him. That was when she was 2 or 3 years old. He would let her ride with him on Saturday night. A rush of excitement would shoot t

    March 19, 2014

  • UPDATE: Peru extends school day PERU — Students at Peru Community Schools will be staying at school longer for the next two weeks after the Peru School Board last week approved a one-hour extension to make up for snow cancellations. The one-hour extension started March 12 and will

    March 19, 2014

Featured Ads
Only on our website
AP Video

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.