Today's News

IU Health Starke President Discusses Strategic Partner Search

IU HealthIU Health Starke and LaPorte Hospitals are in search of health care delivery partners to provide the best care possible to the residents they serve. IU Health Starke President Craig Felty says they’ve sent out requests for proposals and are keeping their options open.

“Our goal would really be to maintain a relationship with IU Health,” Felty said last week during an interview at WKVI.  “We cherish that relationship, but we also just identify that over the years as health care has changed we need to look for somebody additional who might be able to help us meet that need.” Continue reading

IU Health LaPorte and Starke Hospitals Searching for New Strategic Partner

IU HealthIU Health officials are looking for a new strategic partner to serve the health care needs of Starke and LaPorte Counties. Leadership  has decided that’s the best approach to create the strongest strategy going forward, according to a news release. IU Health LaPorte Hospital President and CEO G. Thor Thordarson said in a statement, “We have a strong plan for taking care of our community that includes investing in new facilities, best people, and leading-edge technology. We will work with an organization that is as dedicated as we are to this mission.”

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Starke County Commissioners Approve Ambulance Service Expansion

The Starke County EMS base in North Judson will soon have a paramedic on duty around the clock. The county commissioners approved the expansion of Advanced Life Support, or ALS, service to that base immediately and to Grovertown starting Jan. 1. Knox already has 24-hour ALS coverage. Continue reading

Local Primary Care Providers Accepting New Patients

School starts in a few weeks, and that has many parents scrambling to make sure their children’s immunizations are up to date. IU Health Starke Hospital Director of Patient Services Janet Gillon encourages them to take advantage of the services HealthLink has to offer. Adult patients who need a primary care provider can visit Dr. Nabil Abdo at Dr. Browne’s office. He also has a nurse practitioner on staff who can assist patients of all ages with their health care needs. A nurse practitioner is also available at HealthLinc. Visit for more information.

Suspect Detained in Battery Incident in Knox Park

The Knox City Police Department is investigating the battery of a 14-year-old boy in Wythogan park on Monday night.

According to witness statements given to a Knox officer, a male juvenile had approached the victim in the park and struck him on the head. The victim fell and struck his head on the concrete walkway. The suspect, later identified as a Knox resident, was in a gold-colored passenger car with four other people that left the scene.

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Take a bow

Ted Hayes

Ted Hayes

Today, we say a fond farewell to our mentor, colleague and friend, Ted Hayes. Over the years, Ted has served in many capacities at WKVI: general manager, news director, commercial producer and longtime on-air personality, forging many friendships throughout the Kankakee Valley and our listening area.

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IU Health Starke Employees Spruce Up Sandy Acres Park

IMG_9915The pavilion and picnic benches at Sandy Acres Park got a fresh coat of paint, thanks to IU Health Starke Hospital associates and their families. President Craig Felty says they chose the site for their annual day of service. They worked with Knox Park Superintendent George Byer to figure out how to best use their time and talents. Associates tackled several projects. They painted picnic tables and the park pavilion, installed exercise equipment and spread mulch in the play areas. Felty says all of the IU Health associates enjoy getting out and giving time back to the community.

IU Health Starke Hospital Associates Plan Day of Service

IU Health Starke Hospital associates will be getting out of the medical setting tomorrow to spruce up the community. President Craig Felty says all hospitals in the IU Health system take part in a community day of service. This year the local staff is installing fitness equipment and painting the pavilion at Sandy Acres Park on South Heaton Street in Knox. ”

“We want to be good neighbors. We want to engage the community, and we want to do what is best in order to help achieve our mission, which is to improve the health of our patients and our communities we are in,” Felty says.

Last year IU Health Starke Hospital associates did work at Wythogen Park in downtown Knox. Felty encourages community members to stop by and visit the IU Health Starke Hospital administrators and staff members at the park tomorrow.

Numerous Screenings Available at Community Health Fair

Health FairIU Health Starke Hospital and Community Services of Starke County are hosting a free health fair this afternoon at the Nancy J. Dembowski Community Center in downtown Knox. Hospital President Craig Felty encourages people to stop by and see what services are available locally.
“We will have several educational opportunities for people to come in. We’ll also be doing several different types of screenings, which is very important. It helps us to increase the wellness of patients and maybe prevent something or catch something before it gets out of hand. This is a great opportunity to come out, see what is offered at your local hospital, get some free screenings and get some good information about how to stay healthy,” Felty said. Continue reading

Books Needed for Knox Kindergarten Countdown

Students who take part in the Kindergarten Countdown program at Knox Elementary School this summer will each get a book of their own to take home every day of the three-week enrichment experience. IU Health Starke Hospital and the Knox Community School Corporation are joining forces for a community book drive. Knox Curriculum Director Peggy Shidaker says books should be appropriate for youngsters in the 4 to 5 years old age range. She says books like “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” by Eric Carle, books from “Pete the Cat” series by Kimberly and James Dean and favorite like “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie” by Laura Numeroff are extremely popular. They all teach children sequencing and predicting, which are fundamental to brain development. Continue reading

IU Health Offers Discounted Mammograms in May

Breast Cancer Pink RibbonGive Mom, or any special woman in your life the gift of peace of mind this Mother’s Day. Encourage them to take advantage of the discounted mammograms IU Health Starke Hospital is offering this month. Josephine Klicek is the director of diagnostic imaging. She says women can get their mammogram and reading for $95, and mo doctor’s order is needed if it’s just a screening test.

Women should get their first mammogram when they turn 40, unless they develop problems like a lump, redness or inflammation sooner. Also, if there is a family history of breast cancer, women are urged to get a mammogram 10 years before that woman was diagnosed. For instance, if the diagnosis was made at age 44, get a mammogram when you are 34.  Continue reading

Traffic Stop Ends With Drug Bust

State Police reportedly recovered 136 baggies of heroin from Kelly A. Koranda, 36 of Logansport, at IU Health Starke Hospital.

State Police reportedly recovered 136 baggies of heroin from Kelly A. Koranda, 36, of Logansport, at IU Health Starke Hospital.

A Logansport woman faces numerous drug charges in Starke County following a traffic stop late last week by a LaPorte County Deputy and Indiana State Trooper on U.S. 35 near Hamlet. The deputy pulled Kelly A. Koranda, 36, of Logansport, over just south of Starke County Road 500 North on Thursday, April 24 for an unspecified traffic infraction. According to a news release sent this afternoon by the Indiana State Police, Koranda appeared to be under the influence of drugs and was taken to IU Health Starke Hospital for blood and urine tests.A nurse there reportedly found several packets of heroin in Koranda’s underwear. Officers say she admitted eating 10 packets of the drug before being pulled over and hiding more in her underwear. They recovered 172 baggies of heroin weighing about 36 grams from Koranda. She was admitted to the hospital for observation. Officers arrested her there Sunday when she was released. She’s charged with felony dealing a narcotic drug, felony possession of a narcotic drug over 3 grams, felony maintaining a common nuisance and misdemeanor operating while intoxicated on a controlled substance. Koranda was taken to the Starke County Jail.

Preschool Helps Children Develop Social Skills

Starke County Preschool Project logoThe Starke County Early Education Advisory Council invites families with young children to a preschool fair this evening from 5 until 7 at the community center in downtown Knox. More than 25 preschools and community organizations will have booths, and several will offer activities for children. Porter-Starke Director of Children’s Services Todd Willis says preschool is a good opportunity for children and parents to get used to being away from one another. He says one of the main causes of stress for young children is separating from their family, so getting them into an environment where they can learn to take turns and make peer relationships outside the family is extremely important.

“When I don’t learn as a young child how to resolve conflict with my peer, and I need to resort to throwing a temper tantrum or aggression, if those basic skills are not learned early, they follow the kid into adulthood. Really, the opportunity for a child in that 3 to 4 age learning that early is crucial,” Willis says. Continue reading

Starke County Emergency Responders Called to Two Accidents Sunday

The Starke County Sheriff’s Department investigated two accidents on Sunday.

At 11:20 a.m., officers responded to a call of a vehicle in a water-filled ditch on State Road 8 and Range Road. The car landed on its roof in the ditch. The driver, Kaitlyn Vukelich of Schererville, and her four-year-old daughter were pulled from the vehicle by a passerby.

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A Colonoscopy Could Save You from Colon Cancer

Staff members from IU Health Starke Hospital visited the WKVI studios on Friday morning and one topic that General Surgeon Dr. Mangalore J. Subbarao discussed was the importance of the colonoscopy.

Dr. Subbarao said you can prevent colon cancer by getting this procedure.

“Colonoscopies are very important to prevent the cancer of the colon,” said Dr. Subbarao. “Colon cancer develops with the little growth called a polyp. If you remove the polyp, you have no colon cancer. If you don’t remove the polyp, it grows into a big cancer and it spreads. Then only do you have some symptoms.”

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Joint Commission on Hospital Accreditation Gives IU Health Starke Hospital High Marks

IU Health Starke Hospital recently underwent a rigorous accreditation process. President Craig Felty says the Joint Commission on Hospital Accreditation’s findings are a nationally recognized symbol of quality that reflects an organization’s commitment to “They come in and they more or less go from top to bottom in your hospital,” Felty says. “They look at everything from the physical structure to our processes to our quality outcomes to how we credential and privilege our physicians. It’s a very thorough four-day survey that’s done every three years.”

The survey team comes in unannounced. Felty says the hospital staff has to be in a “state of constant readiness” for them. The Joint Commission team members spent four days at IU Health Starke Hospital, touring the building, tracking the progress of individual patients through the hospital and talking to cart and bedside care providers.

Felty says the Joint Commission’s report was overall very positive. “We had absolutely no findings in the actual patient care division, which was absolutely wonderful. We have an older facility, and so we do have challenges that come with that. A couple of our findings were related to the age of the facility and things that pop up here or there. The few findings that we had, we are very happy to say and very proud of the colleagues of Starke Hospital, or physician partners, who we could not do without. Physicians are a huge part of our organization. We are just very proud to say that we had a remarkable survey, one of the best surveys I’ve had in my 20-plus years of experience with the Joint Commission.”



Starke County Building Corporation, Commissioners Meeting This Morning

Starke County Courthouse

Starke County Courthouse

The Starke County Building Corporation plans to appoint a committee to discuss future uses for the current jail. They are meeting this morning at 8:30 at the county annex building, prior to the commissioners meeting at 9. Skillman Corporation will also provide an update on how construction of the new jail east of Knox on State Road 8 is going. It’s scheduled for completion in the spring of 2015. The commissioners agenda includes consideration of a proposal from Starke County Clerk Evelyn Skronski to relocate some precincts. Officials from IU Health Starke Hospital will also discuss the physicians recruitment program. EMA Director Ted Bombagetti and James Coad are on the agenda regarding the county’s emergency preparedness plan. Wendy Elam from CADA has a proclamation for the county to declare April Child Abuse Prevention Month. CADA, CASA and the Indiana Department of Child Services are kicking off the awareness campaign tomorrow evening at 7:30 p.m. at the Nancy J. Dembowski Convention Center in downtown Knox with a Pinwheels for Prevention candle lighting ceremony. Members of the public are invited to come show their support for children in the community. In the event of inclement weather, the ceremony will take place inside.

Annual Community Health Fair Scheduled May 13

The annual IU Health and Community Services of Starke County Health Fair will take place Tuesday, May 13 from 2 until 7 p.m. at the Nancy J. Dembowski Community Center in downtown Knox. IU Health Starke Hospital President Craig Felty says both organizations are dedicated to improving the health of local residents. He says the health fair will feature a number of educational exhibits and several types of screenings. Blood pressure and blood sugar checks, breast exams, oral cancer screenings and osteoporosis checks will all be offered. Also  take-home colorectal cancer screening kits will be available. Felty says checking for these types of conditions is critical in order to catch and treat problems before they become significant. IU Health Starke Hospital is also licensed to inspect child safety seats. Technicians will be available at the health fair to make sure car seats are properly installed and sized for the child. This year’s health fair will also feature a coloring area for youngsters so parents and other adults can more easily browse the exhibits and take part in the screenings.

IU Health Starke Hospital Celebrates Doctors Day

Dr.  Mangalore Subba Rao and IU Health Starke Hospital President Craig Felty

Dr. Mangalore Subba Rao and IU Health Starke Hospital President Craig Felty

Local physicians were the guests of honor Friday morning at IU Health Starke Hospital. The administration hosted a breakfast in the cafeteria to celebrate Doctor’s Day, which is actually Sunday, March 30.

Doctor’s Day was first celebrated in 1933. That date was chosen because on March 30, 1842 Dr. Crawford Williamson Long first used general anesthesia in surgery. He used ether on a patient who was having a tumor removed from his neck. Long went on to use anesthesia in both amputations and childbirth. In 1990 President George H.W. Bush officially made the date a holiday to recognize the nation’s physicians.

IU Health Starke Hospital Offers Final Free Affordable Care Act Event

Area residents have one final chance to get their questions about the Affordable Care Act answered before Monday’s looming deadline. IU Health Starke Hospital is hosting a free question and answer session today from 1 p.m. until 3 p.m. CDT in the conference room. IU Health Exchange Navigators will be able to help people sign up for coverage or answer any questions they may have. Monday is the last day for people without insurance to sign up for coverage in order to avoid paying a penalty during next year’s tax season.

The federal government did grant a reprieve for people who have started an application on the website but can’t complete it by the March 31 deadline. They will be given an extension, although the amount of time was not specified. In order to qualify, the applicant needs to check the blue box on the website indicating an attempt to sign up for coverage by the March 31 deadline.

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