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Dr. Gerardo (Gerry) Gomez

AFTERNOONS WITH AMOS – YOUR LIFE MATTERS WEEK! How does Indy’s Medical Community have to say about the city’s rising violent crime wave?  The men and women, the doctors, nurses and medical technicians who work in the Trauma Center at Indianapolis’ Level One Trauma Hospital, Eskenazi, have strong feelings about violence and what needs to be done.  As part of YOUR LIFE MATTERS WEEK, outstanding medical professionals appeared on Afternoons with Amos to talk frankly about the problem and what they has a hospital and medical professionals are doing about it.

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Dr. Clark Simons

Appearing with Amos were Dr. Gerardo (Gerry) Gomez, Chief of Trauma at the Smith Level One Shock Trauma Center at Eskenazi Health; Dr. Clark Simons, Trauma Surgeon at Eskenazi’s Smith Level One Shock Trauma Center and Dr. Brian Mullis, an Ortho Trauma Surgeon. Also in the discussion was Wendy St. John, Trauma Program Manager at the Smith Level One Shock Trauma Center and Diana Creasser, Manager of Eskenazi Health’s Prescription for Hope program.

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Dr. Brian Mullis

Prescription for Hope is a five year old program at Wishard now Eskenazi Hospital that has been recognized around the country as one of the programs that hospitals have created to help reduced the number of repeat times victims of violence return to the hospital. Modeled after a program in San Francisco, Prescription for Hope was created by then Wishard Hospital because the hospital felt they were

releasing patients – specifically those with gun, stabbing or assault wounds – back into the same environments in which their injuries occurred and without intervention those patients were likely to return with a similar injury. In the program the hospital teams with various community partners to develop

health, education and employment opportunities for program participants that help these patients develop effective life skills for responsible behavior

and reduce repeated criminal activity, arrest and traumatic injury and create safer homes and neighborhoods.

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Wendy St. John

Through these violence prevention programs, including Prescription for Hope, Wishard/Eskenazi has seen significant results. For example, less than 5% of patients who’ve gone through the Prescription for Hope program have returned to Eskenazi with a similar injuries, compared to the over 30% return rate prior to the program. In the interview with Amos, Doctors Gomez, Simons and Mullis talked about the nature of the care that victims of violence receive at Eskenazi, explaining the numbers of medical professionals n involved in working with patients with severe gunshot and other violent injuries.  The costs of treatment ranges in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.  A cost that eventually taxpayers pick up.

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Diana Creasser

The doctors also talked in personal terms about the impact and toll the rising violence takes on then.  Said Doctor Simons, who is African-American, he is a father and seeing the young men of color coming through his operating room and hospital causes him to worry about the future for his children.  It’s a side of the issue of violence you’re haven’t heard in Indianapolis media.  The roles of the medical community and what they are doing to try and reduce violence and crime in Indianapolis. Click the Media Player to Hear The Medical Community’s Point of View. Runs 74 Minutes. ©2014 WTLC/Radio One.