Nursing at Franciscan Health
As a faith-based and mission-driven organization, we’re committed to our Franciscan values. We’re also committed to empowering nurses through a professional practice model including shared governance, a healthy work environment and evidence-based practice, as well as assisting with professional growth and development.
Nursing positions are available in a variety of areas including emergency, medical/surgical, ICU, home health and more.
Welcome from our Chief Nursing Officer
At Franciscan Health, we focus on creating opportunities of a lifetime for our patients and professionals. With every effort and action, our family of employees strives to embrace and embody the mission, vision and values that have made Franciscan Health a trusted, recognized and rewarding health care system.
For more than 100 years, the Sisters of St. Francis of Perpetual Adoration have served the Indianapolis area. In 1914, two Sisters from the Order of the Sisters of St. Francis of Perpetual Adoration, with a mission to care for those who could not care for themselves, traveled to Beech Grove, Ind., to create a hospital for that needy community.
Later, Franciscan Health (previously St. Francis Hospital & Health Centers) was established and now is a large, dynamic medical system serving south-central Indiana.
The Franciscan Health Nursing mission and foundation
Through each nurse’s unique education, experience and gifts, we continue Christ’s ministry in our Franciscan tradition. Franciscan nurses are defined by compassion, joyful service, compassionately caring for patients and maintaining the values and traditions established by Franciscan Alliance.
The patient, his or her family, his or her health status and the health environment are the basic components of nursing care. It is the nurse’s interaction with those components that creates quality nursing care.
Evidence-based care, ongoing educational development, adhering to a professional practice and assuring a healthy work environment are the hallmarks of our practice.
Advocacy for our patients, their families, Franciscan Health and the principles of Catholic health care are paramount to our vision.
At Franciscan Health, we are proud of the talented, knowledgeable and dedicated employees who have helped build our tradition of excellence in health care. Our nursing team is made up of highly skilled, knowledgeable clinicians who work alongside the Greatest Healer of all time. Partnered with our colleagues, we provide skilled, compassionate patient care using state-of-the-art technology in a faith-based environment.
We’d love to have you join our mission of healing. Please take time to view our site and learn more about nursing at Franciscan Health. If you’re interested in working in our healing, patient-centered environment, visit our careers page, or read our unit descriptions to learn more. Thanks for visiting our Web site!
Susan McRoberts, MSN, RN, NEA-BC, CPHQ, Vice President and Chief Nursing Officer
McRoberts has been honored as one of the Indiana University School of Nursing's Top 100 Alumni Awards.
Shared governance (shared leadership) is defined as a decentralized approach that gives nurses greater authority and control over their practice and work environment; engenders a sense of responsibility and accountability; and allows active participation in the decision making process, with the primary aim of supporting the relationship between the nurse and the patient (O’May, 1999). At Franciscan Health in central Indiana, the Nursing Congress serves as the shared leadership structure by which the professional nurse works within formal venues and with the responsibility, authority and accountability deemed necessary to influence practice.
Through empowered decision making at the point-of-care, the Nursing Congress provides the framework which allows professional registered nurses to use their clinical knowledge and expertise to develop, direct, and sustain their own professional practice. The congress serves to create an environment of opportunity for collaborative practice between disciplines, to facilitate the dissemination of best practice throughout the organization, and to promote professional involvement and accountability for delivering quality care.
The Franciscan Health Indianapolis Nursing Congress is a staff-driven model that is comprised of five primary councils (Clinical Practice, Leadership, Professional Development, Coordinating, and Nursing Congress Staff Council). The detailed “work of nursing” is carried out at the point-of-care closest to the patient, within each individual nursing unit’s staff council, and within the many phenomenon-centered committees, task groups, and work teams established to implement and share best practices.
Nurses attend, get involved with and lead more than two dozen committees at Franciscan St. Francis Health. These committees take an active role in maintaining patient safety, educating staff and implementing change. Our leaders recognize the expertise of nurses at all levels and empower them to take control of the health care they provide.
Participating in committees that interest them or pertain to their daily functions is just one way nurses are continually making a difference in the Franciscan Health Indianapolis community.
Below is a list of the current nursing councils and committees. All Franciscan Health Indianapolis councils and committees fall under the guidance of the Franciscan Health Indianapolis Nursing Congress.
Alaris CQI Council
This committee reviews CQI reporter data, makes clinical practice recommendations based on best practice and makes recommendations for changes and updates to drug libraries based on data analyses. Meets monthly.
This monthly committee focuses on education about bioethics, review of clinical issues, as well as writing policies. Meets quarterly.
This team reviews current clinical cases as needed, and mediates and facilitates communication for the healthcare team, patients and families. Meets monthly and as needed.
Career Advancement and Recognition of Excellence (CARE) Committee
This committee provides oversite to the development of the levels of professional advancement for registered nurses and PCCs and requirements for advancement. It also developed a Peer Review Committee that is responsible for review of the Nurses’ portfolios that are submitted to the program. This committee evaluates the portfolios and makes recommendations on the applicant’s submission for advancement. Meets biweekly.
Center of Hope Sexual Assault Response Team (SART, COH)
This team reviews changes (such as those related to policy), issues and educational items. It addresses patient care and fundraising and allows a forum for debriefing. Meets every other month.
Code Status Team
This team reviews, writes, implements and ensures the quality of the Code Status Policy. Meets as needed.
Emergency Response Teams Committee (ERTC)
This committee encompasses the Code Blue committee, Rapid Response Team and EHART (Emergency Heart Attack Response Team). Meets every other month.
Home Health/Hospice Advisory Board
Board members advise and assist Home Health and Hospice by monitoring standards and growth. Meets quarterly.
Hospital-wide Educational Committee (HCEC)
This committee plans, implements and revises programs, in-services and orientation to address employee, patient and community education needs. Meets monthly.
Institutional Ethics Committee (IEC)
This committee serves as a sounding board for ethical issues. Meets quarterly.
IOPO (Indiana Organ Procurement Organization) Donor Council
This council is the link between IOPO and St. Francis Health. It also serves to educate staff and facilitate communication. Meets quarterly.
Lab/Nursing Process Committee
This committee manages lab and nursing practices and improves communication among lab and nursing. Meets bimonthly.
Medication Reconciliation Committee
This group reviews and makes recommendations regarding the medication reconciliation process. It assists with education and implementation of process changes and improvements. Meets monthly.
Medication Safety Decision (MEDS) Committee
This committee makes decisions about changes and improvements related to medication safety and administration. These decisions are based upon the latest evidence based research and updates to the hospital formulary. It reports to Pharmacy & Therapeutics Committee and Medical Staff Process Improvement Committee. Meets twice monthly.
Nursing Executive Council (NEC)
This committee is chaired by the Chief Nursing Officer and is a forum to update and present information and issues to the Nursing Directors. Meets twice monthly.
Nursing Leadership Council
This council is chaired by the Chief Nursing Officier and is responsible for providing updates to and collaborating with all nursing leadership. Meets monthly.
Nursing Managers Council
This council is chaired by a Nurse Manager and is responsible for providing updates to and collaborating with all nursing managers. Meets monthly.
Nursing Pain Management Council
This council reports data at the hospital and unit levels. It establishes hospital policy and initiatives to improve the care of patients with pain and related symptoms. Meets monthly.
Nursing Value Analysis Team
This team reviews and recommends patient-care supplies and equipment. Meets monthly.
Patient Care Ethics Team
This team reviews and is the sounding board for patient-care ethical issues. Meets quarterly.
Patient Care Standards Council (PCSC)
This council develops, evaluates, reviews and revises policies and procedures related to professional nursing practice. Meets monthly.
Perioperative Patient Safety Committee
This committee reviews patient safety issues as they related to the procedural areas, including operating room (OR), maternity center, catheterization lab and interventional radiology. Meets monthly and as needed.
Procedural Patient Safety Committee (PPSC)
This committee reviews patient safety issues and national patient safety goals as they relate to procedural areas including operating room (OR), maternity center, catheterization lab and interventional radiology. Meets monthly and as needed.
Professional Ethics Committee
This group serves as a sounding board for issues pertaining to professional activity and ethical decision making. Meets quarterly.
Skin Action Team (SAT): Save Our Skin
This team works to improve skin care and pressure ulcer prevalence/incidents through revised and standardized skin policy. Meets monthly.
Vascular Access Committee
This committee manages phlebitis audits and reviews vascular access policies. Meets monthly.
Professional Practice Model
What is the Professional Practice Model?
- The Nursing Professional Practice Model (PPM) at Franciscan Health serves to provide a structure to support the caring relationship that exists between the nurse and the patients/families we are blessed to serve.
- Our model is grounded in the faith-based mission and values of the Sisters of St. Francis of Perpetual Adoration and the Franciscan Alliance Health System, in accord with the American Nurses Association and State of Indiana Nurse Practice Act.
- The Franciscan nurse is supported and mentored through their professional career as she/he develops from novice to clinical expert. We work within a healing and healthy environment where the registered nurse and nursing staff provide excellent and safe care that is based on best-available evidence. Our PPM is driven by and operationalized through our vehicle for shared leadership, the Nursing Congress.
Why do we need a model?
- Our COMPASS defines, guides and drives our professional work
- Key element for establishing exemplary professional practice
- Visual framework articulating the care we provide to achieve the highest quality outcomes
- Common foundation, provides vision to achieve culture of excellence
- Reflects how and what we practice.
- Integrates mission, vision, philosophy and theories of nursing.
- Our professional practice is patient/family centered
- Our professional practice is evidence-based
- Our professional practice takes place in a healthy work environment
- Our professional practice is legitimized through our shared governance structure
- Our professional practice is driven and guided by the ANA Scope and Standards and Code of Ethics
- Our professional practice is integrated within the Franciscan Health Mission and Values
The CARE (Career Advancement and Recognition of Excellence) program at Franciscan Health recognizes and rewards registered nurses for their professional achievements.
Advancement opportunities within the CARE Program are open to nurses in direct-care staff positions who practice at a level of clinical proficiency and expertise. These staff nurses, RNs, and PCCs demonstrate superior commitment and contributions to their patients, their peers and colleagues, their department, the hospital and their local communities.
Following the concept of “novice to expert,” nurses in the CARE program are supported as they move through the stages of professional development:
- new graduate/beginner (Nurse Colleague)
- competency (Nurse Advocate)
- proficiency (Nurse Resource)
- expertise (Nurse Expert)
- The developmental stages of advancement reflect the increase in the scope and complexity of clinical practice. Registered nurses interested in the program are mentored and guided to develop a professional portfolio showcasing their contributions.
A committee of Resource- and Expert-level registered nurses evaluates the portfolios and determines advancement in the program. CARE RNs receive ongoing recognition, as well as monetary awards.
A companion program, PCC CARE, recognizes the unit-based RN who is working in a formal leadership tract as a “patient care coordinator.” PCC Resource and Expert levels within the CARE Program exemplify leadership and management skills and behaviors that are based on the ANA’s Nursing Administration: Scope and Standards of Practice.
The CARE program is grounded in the American Nurses Association Scope and Standards of Practice and Code of Ethics.
We know that continuing education and professional development are important aspects to ensuring our nurses stay up-to-date and satisfied with their chosen specialties. We also know that keeping abreast of current changes in nursing standards and applications is critical to being able to deliver safe, quality care to our patients.
We offer several programs to enrich your professional experiences here at Franciscan Health. Our programs are coordinated through our Professional Development Council, a function of our Nursing Shared Leadership at Franciscan. The council facilitates and promotes ongoing professional development, rewards and recognition for Franciscan St. Francis nurses, as well as recruitment and retention activities for nurses.
Active professional development programs for employees
- Nurses’ Week
- – Information about certification is available during this annual recognition week in May.
National Certification Day for Nurses – This annual event is a day to educate nurses about and encourage nurses to obtain certification.
Certification study groups – The Professional Development Council anticipates and will encourage the development of a certification study group in each nursing unit.
Continuing education courses – Working together with the nursing educators, the council is developing additional courses that will count toward continuing education requirements for maintaining certifications.
Nursing scholarships – The council promotes two scholarships available for nurses through the Franciscan St. Francis Healthcare Foundation.
Opportunities for nursing degree advancement – Plans are in the works to bring local universities to franciscan St. Francis to inform nurses who wish to receive their bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) degrees about the process, benefits and requirements.
Nurse participation in career fairs – The council plans to involve nurses in career fairs at their respective alma maters, working alongside Human Resources representatives to attract prospective nurse graduates to work at Franciscan Health.
CARE programs – The council promotes and encourages participation in the hospital’s two CARE career advancement programs.
Critical Care Residency
Franciscan Health Indianapolis offers a critical care residency for advanced-beginner acute and critical care nurses. The residency is designed to be a structured pathway that allows a nurse intern to gain clinical comfort, confidence and competence in a critical care setting.
The critical care residency program includes both structured instruction and bedside experience in two phases over a period of six weeks, plus six months of unit-based learning.
The critical care residency provides:
- Mentorship, guided orientation and clinical expertise supported with both unit experience and classroom instruction
- Encouragement, socialization, increasing confidence and meaningful experience for the nurse resident
- Individualized education and clinical experience for maximum growth
The critical care residency allows:
- An advanced-beginner nurse to progress to a competent acute and critical care registered nurse
- Exposure to a varied patient population
- Experiential learning with bedside experts
- Exposure to the multidisciplinary team and other departments to enhance teamwork and collaboration
- Opportunity to assess/respond to real patient signs and symptoms, determine the appropriate intervention and evaluate the outcome through simulated scenarios, case studies, mock codes and CNS case studies.
The critical care residency also:
- Advances each nurse slowly — at a pace that is comfortable and safe for the nurse and patient — over six months, as the nurse’s skills, knowledge, critical thinking and confidence increase
- Improves enhanced critical thinking, psychomotor skills and confidence
- Maximizes clinical and learning experiences while maintaining a safe environment for both nurse and patient
For more information contact
At Franciscan Health, we encourage our nurses to continue their education, both to continually improve the care we provide to our patients and to help our nurses continue to grow professionally and personally.
The Franciscan Healthcare Foundation offers scholarship opportunities for current Franciscan Health employees:
For more information about scholarships contact:
Franciscan Healthcare Foundation
The first year of any professional career — or the first year after changing jobs — is exciting, full of possibilities and yes, sometimes overwhelming.
For nurses in their first year after graduation or who are new to Franciscan Health or new to a unit, the hospital offers a unique mentoring program designed to foster deep, interpersonal relationships with experienced nurses.
Unit managers pair an experienced nurse (the mentor) with a new nurse (protégé) of similar educational background, age, personality and shift assignment. The structured program helps ease the transition for the newly hired registered nurse, pairs the nurse with a trusted and non-threatening colleague and encourages open communication, all with the goal of increasing the new nurse’s satisfaction with his or her job and profession. The mentor-protégé relationship also empowers the protégé to reach an autonomy that comes from competency, self-confidence and responsibility. Mentors are selected based on strict criteria that ensure a positive experience for protégés.
- be considered an expert on his or her unit
- keep current on practice standards
- be committed to the hospital’s mission and values
- promote an optimistic, positive environment, learning and professional advancement
- be willing to share knowledge and experiences and teach new nurses
- be able to provide timely, accurate advice
- be nurturing, kind, considerate, trustworthy, committed, encouraging and a good listener
- serve as an advocate to promote the nursing profession
- work well under stress
- meet or exceed minimum scores on annual performance reviews
- be employed at Franciscan Health Indianapolis, Mooresville or Carmel for at least two years before beginning a mentor-protégé relationship.
Equally important, protégés are selected based on a set of criteria that will most likely ensure a mutually positive relationship.
- accept responsibility for his or her own professional development and growth
- seek challenges or new responsibilities
- try new approaches
- look for feedback and seek to improve his or her performance
- view mistakes as learning opportunities
- be committed to the program, the mentor and the profession
- be willing to look at issues from different points of view
- be excited about nursing
- be coachable
Mentors and protégés:
- meet and attend a four hour class together at the beginning of the program
- sign a one-year contract committing to the program
- meet face-to-face a minimum of seven times throughout the year
- report on the relationship at various stages throughout the year
The mentor program has eased the transition into new nursing positions for more than 200 nurses at Franciscan Health. If you’re a new graduate, new to Franciscan Health or changing units, consider this unique professional opportunity.
We’re the first in the state and one of only a handful of hospitals in the country to offer this chance to work closely with an experienced nurse and complete your first year a more confident, more satisfied nurse.
Mary Beth Johnson
Certification in a nursing specialty benefits the patient, the nurse and the employer.
- Patients benefit by receiving care from nurses who are more highly educated in their specialties than their non-certified peers. Certified nurses must keep up with advances through continuing education not required to maintain RN status.
- Nurses feel a sense of self-accomplishment, self-confidence and professional competence in their specialties. They may receive more financial benefits, be more likely to advance in their fields and have more career opportunities than their non-certified peers.
- Employers benefit by building a knowledgeable, skilled staff of nurses who are committed to their specialties and to delivering the highest-quality care to their patients.
Certification at Franciscan Health
At FFranciscan Health Indianapolis, we know that earning and maintaining certification will contribute to your professional satisfaction. And nurses who keep abreast of advances in their specialties through continuing education and maintaining their certifications are more likely to remain satisfied in their positions longer than those who do not. That’s why we encourage our nurses to seek certification in their active care areas, and we provide opportunities to help them meet that goal.
To help you earn and maintain certification:
We offer several organized certification courses that our employees may attend free of charge. In addition to others, some certification courses include those for:
- Critical care and progressive care
- Bone marrow
- We offer financial assistance in paying for your first certification exam.
- We will provide a voucher for significant savings (about 50%) toward the cost of your first exam.
- After successfully completing the certification exam, we will reimburse you for the cost of the exam.
- In order to help you maintain active certifications, we are an approved provider of nursing contact hours by the Indiana State Nurses Association.
If you have just graduated or are preparing to graduate from an accredited nursing program but have not yet received your nursing license, it is not too early to get to know our nursing staff and prepare for a career at Franciscan Health Indianapolis. We welcome the chance to encourage new nurses in the earliest stages of their careers.
For new graduates who are not yet licensed nurses:
- We offer a National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX) review course on campus. Your NCLEX exam score is an important component of the Indiana State Board of Nursing’s decision on whether to grant licensure.
- We pay you for your time spent taking state board exams.
- If you do not pass the board exam on the first try, we offer an intense tutoring program and personal support as you await an opportunity to re-take the state licensure exam. (If you do not pass the board exam on the second try, you will not remain on staff at Franciscan St. Francis Health.)
- You are able to work and attend orientation during the period between graduation and receiving your nursing license. However, you will not be able to be oriented to or practice some patient care until you are fully licensed.
Additional information for new nurses:
Today's students are tomorrow's nurses, and we want students to enter the field of nursing with confidence, experience and the financial assistance that will allow an opportunity to focus on moving ahead.
If you are a current nursing student, we encourage you to take advantage of several opportunities available to you even before you begin your career with Franciscan Health. Take some time to shadow nurses on a unit that sounds interesting to you. Apply for an internship experience. And find out ways you can work with Franciscan even before you graduate.
When you are hired as a nurse at Franciscan, take advantage of our tuition assistance program. After you have become employed here, you are also eligible for scholarships and tuition reimbursement to help your education keep pace with your career.
Students can develop realistic expectations about the nursing profession by watching and learning from nurses as they perform their work. It’s a chance to observe and begin to understand the connection between material they have been studying in school and real-life application in a patient-care setting.
Shadowing is defined as a strict, observation-only experience that lasts fewer than 24 hours total. Those hours may be spread across a maximum of five visits. (This is different than an internship experience.)
Typically done to fulfill an educational requirement, the shadowing experience might include limited hands-on projects or project-related activities. There is no patient contact involved in shadowing opportunities.
Applicants must be at least 16 years of age to shadow.
We value the commitment you made to education before arriving at Franciscan Health Indianapolis, Carmel or Mooresville. It demonstrates your desire for higher education, personal and professional satisfaction, and capability to provide the highest-quality care for your patients. That’s why we offer tuition assistance for newly hired employees who have recently earned a degree.
Tuition assistance is available for employees newly hired into certain disciplines (including nursing, physical therapy, occupational therapy and others) who have received their licenses but are not yet six months past graduation.
Tuition assistance also is available for current employees who have achieved higher degrees.
An employee is eligible after the degree is obtained and upon signing a contract agreeing to work at Franciscan Health for a minimum of 4,160 hours after receiving tuition assistance.
Employees who have worked at Franciscan longer than six months are eligible for tuition reimbursement toward future courses that are relevant to their degrees.
When to apply
Employees must apply for tuition assistance after degree completion and within six months of graduation.
If you have chosen nursing as a career, you have committed to a lifetime of caring for others. Pursuing a career in nursing with Franciscan Health is an excellent career decision.
With 2.6 million RNs in the United States alone, nursing represents the single largest healthcare profession. A nursing career in our organization offers not only professional development opportunities, but also an opportunity for personal commitment and service to others.
Our focus on compassionate care, our commitment to the ongoing ministry of healing, and our Franciscan values, all make nursing at Franciscan Health a special and rewarding career.
Nursing positions are available in a variety of areas including emergency, medical/surgical, ICU, home health and more. Contact us today at (317) 528-3771 or MyCareer@franciscanalliance.org if you’re interested in a career at Franciscan Health in Indianapolis, Carmel or Mooresville, Indiana.