As we head into the second half of winter, it’s time to check in and take stock of our progress in TakingCare, Aspire’s health and well-being initiative to encourage and support all staff members working to maintain their optimal health.
From the early morning yoga class at Carmel OP (read more about it in the Staff Spotlight!) to the healthy breakfast items brought in to share by Maggie Harvey at Admin, there are signs everywhere that staff are taking small and large steps to improve their habits!
One habit that everyone at Aspire can adopt is the use of myStrength, an employee benefit that is free to all staff. If you thought myStrength was only useful for behavioral health concerns, think again! It has a wealth of information about weight management, eating well, exercise both at home and at the office, time management, ageing, hypertension, and the list really does go on and on. If you are interested in changing some behaviors, adopting some healthy habits, and succeeding in your personal goals, myStrength offers some great motivational tips and advice.
myStrength is also available free of charge to all of those we serve at Aspire Indiana and Aspire Indiana Health, so please ask about it at your next visit to one of our health centers. It is an easy to use mobile app that helps keep you on track during your behavioral and physical health journey. With a simple click on your computer or mobile device, myStrength’s vast library of articles, reminders, and other self help tools is immediately available. For more information about Aspire and myStrength, please watch our video.
We are now posting a lot of information about TakingCare on our Aspire Indiana Facebook page, so please be sure to check there often for articles about healthy eating, weight management, exercise, and events going on in the company and in our communities.
We’re also adding resources to TakingCare all the time and all staff suggestions are welcomed and encouraged! Just talk to your DMS or send an email to Marketing with your ideas about TakingCare, our new philosophy about health and well-being at Aspire!
We’re shining the spotlight this month on a group of staff members at our Carmel location who are acting in the spirit of TakingCare by starting a twice weekly yoga class! Every Tuesday and Thursday, the group comes in a little early to dedicate a half an hour to improving their physical and mental strength with the YouTube video series “Yoga with Adrienne: 30 Days of Yoga.” The group has subtitled the sessions “No Judgement Yoga” and all of the poses and movements can be adapted according to individual levels of fitness, flexibility, and skill.
The yoga sessions were the idea of Melinda Schadler and were inspired by Aspire’s new focus on company-wide health and well-being. Melinda, a Staff Therapist who joined Aspire in September, is a busy mom of two young children and says beginning her day with
yoga gives her a rare opportunity to ground herself before work. Melinda says, “It improves my interactions with others throughout the day. I find myself taking more thoughtful responses instead of constantly reacting to others.”
Peggy Brill says the group chose yoga because it focuses on balance and all felt that fit in well with the work-life balance goals of TakingCare, Aspire’s new philosophy of health and well-being.
Peggy says yoga is a great mind body experience that works your body and calms and focuses your mind. “We all bring life issues to work with us everyday and then are faced with the numerous challenges the work day presents. Starting the day off with a sense of calmness and renewal (and maybe a bit of sweat) is very energizing,” says Peggy.
What a perfect way to start the work day and have a lot of fun and camaraderie with colleagues! If you want to join in the Carmel OP yoga gatherings, they are held on Tuesdays at 7:30 a.m. and Thursdays at 7:45 a.m. in Room C 27. If those times or the Carmel location don’t work for you, how about starting up your own group of Aspire yogis?
IPLA is having a standard renewal process that is due April 1st.
Please refer to the policy HR 3.13 to get further details about licensing. You can contact the Indiana Professional Licensing Agency at; https://www.in.gov/pla. Once you have renewed your license, please forward a copy of the renewal to Tonii Martin-Rhodes or Angie Purcell in HR.
Aspire Makes a Difference for Veterans and Their Families
Aspire’s small but mighty Veterans program is making a big difference for many in Madison, Hamilton, and northern Marion counties. Emily Quillen and Rich Goodwin make up the team administering our Supportive Services for Veteran Families Program, or SSVF, which provides a myriad of necessities for veterans of all ages and circumstances. Emily, herself a veteran, was featured recently in Madison County’s Herald Bulletin and you can read that piece here.
We caught up with Emily last month for an update on the program, which helped 29 individuals and/or families maintain or acquire housing between October and December of last year. December’s extreme cold temperatures really underlined the importance of the program’s top priority of helping veterans avoid homelessness. Aspire’s VA grant-funded SSVF program also steps in to help veterans in need pay for utilities and food. Veterans may also access Aspire’s many wraparound services through the SSVF program.
If you have questions about SSVF, please call Emily at 317-503-2524.
News from Aspire Indiana Health
Aspire Indiana Health continues to gain momentum in becoming a leader in integrated healthcare in central Indiana. We’ve had a busy start to 2018 and the year ahead looks to be very exciting with the appointment of our first Medical Director for Primary Care, the expansion of our service area, and the addition of some new members to our Board of Directors.
Dr. David Dwyer joined AIH at the end of last year, bringing over 40 years of experience as a doctor of internal medicine at Riverview Hospital in Noblesville. Dr. Dwyer says he decided to join us at Aspire because of our integrated model which provides a continuous flow of behavioral and primary care to those we serve. To learn more about Dr. Dwyer, see our press release here.
As for our expansion, Aspire Indiana Health is continuing to gain recognition as a Federally Qualified Health Center. FQHC look-alike status was recently extended to our locations in Noblesville and Lebanon, adding to the recognition already granted to our offices in Carmel, Elwood, Anderson, and Indianapolis. FQHC look-alikes meet all of the standards required to be an FQHC. This means that AIH is qualified to receive resources from the Health and Human Services Administration to provide primary care services in underserved areas. We are extremely proud of the hard work that has gone into this recognition and wish to thank everyone involved for their dedication to accomplish this feat in such a short amount of time.
We’d also like to take this opportunity to once again welcome our new AIH board members! Professor Michael Collette of Anderson University’s Fall School of Business, Norm Tate of the Fishers Police Department, Pastor Daniel Stevens of Grace Baptist Church in Anderson, and Rob Spaulding of the Christian Center in Madison County bring a diverse set of skills that will enable Aspire Indiana Health to continue on its path of growth and success.
Phishing and Social Engineering
Hello Aspire Staff,
Social Engineering and Phishing are expected to continue to grow exponentially in 2018. These are methods that cyber criminals use to steal information and passwords, lock files and demand a ransom to unlock, extort, and impersonate others.
We have technical safeguards at Aspire and while most of these emails get blocked (but not all), nearly as many exist on the web outside of email. You can be our best defense!
Two weeks ago, we had a company perform a Phishing Security Test to measure our ability to NOT click on these. They sent out about 100 emails and only 7 people clicked on the link; that’s a 7% rating and pretty good for our first test. The average first test is a 16% rating. Way to go, Aspire! Ideally, we’d like to see that rating go down to about a 1% click rate.
Take a look at the phishing email that was sent below along with the clues to help identify them. There are also 5 tips below to help protect yourself. If you are suspicious, forward it to our helpdesk (firstname.lastname@example.org) and they will investigate.
5 Tips to Protect Yourself from Phishing
Always check the link before clicking. Hover over it to preview the URL, and look carefully for misspelling or other irregularities. While it’s fine to click on links when you’re on trusted sites, clicking on links that appear in random emails isn’t a good idea. A phishing email may claim to be from a legitimate company and when you click the link to the website, it may look exactly like the real website.
Only enter your username and password over a secure connection. Look for the “https” prefix before the site URL, indicating the site it secure. If there is no “s,” beware.
Even if a message or a link comes from one of your coworkers or best friends, remember that they could also have been fooled or hacked. Treat links and attachments with suspicion.
Messages from official organizations, such as banks, tax agencies, online shops, travel agencies, airlines, and so on, also require scrutiny. Even internal messages from your own office. It’s simply not that hard to fabricate a fake message that looks like a real one.
It’s better not to follow links from emails. Instead you can open a new tab and type the website of your bank or other destination manually.
Join in the Conversation on Facebook!
Welcome New Employees!
Elizabeth Bilderback, HIV Case Manager/Enrollment Specialist, Bolin
Deborah Cairns, Executive Coordinator, Noblesville Admin
Carolyn Daniels, HIV Prevention Case Manager, Bolin
Felicia Hester, Forensic Peer Specialist, Noblesville OP
Leigh Hoover, Practice Manager, Carmel OP
Andrea Keesling, Life Skills Coach, Hartung
Jill Racer-Lewis, HIV Prevention Case Manager, Bolin
Colin Rak-Dietz, Ph.D., Psychologist, Willowbrook
Christina Gutierrez, Life Skills Coach, May House
Adam Ramer, School-Based Therapist, Elwood School
Andrea Redfield, Life Skills Coach, May House
Brittany Salyers, Intake Engagement Specialist, Brown
Madison Sauerteig, Care Coordinator/Life Skills Inst School-Based, Noblesville OP
Hailey Sherwood, HIV Prevention Case Manager, Bolin
Braden Westbrook, Life Skills Ins, Willowbrook
Madison Williams, Recovery Coach, Noblesville, OP
Aspire’s VIPs at the Indiana Pacers!
The fun continues with Aspire’s Pacers VIP program, with 16 lucky staff members each winning a pair of tickets in January. As you can see from the smiles in these photos, it is great to be an Aspire VIP!
Aspire’s Heathcare Hero
We are very proud of Greg Denniston, a Certified Recovery Specialist who works at our Hudson House group home in Anderson. Greg is a finalist for a Healthcare Heroes 2018 Award by the Indiana Business Journal. Here is Greg’s nomination written by Aspire’s Director for Supported Living Services Stefane Borders:
“You haven’t been in my shoes.”
Illness of any kind can be isolating. Whether it takes us out of our routines, separates from loved ones, or causes suffering that is unknown to those around the sufferer, it isolates. The isolation is often magnified for those with mental illnesses because it is so often misunderstood, stigmatized, and feared.
Greg gets that.
Greg Denniston first became sick in 1985 when he was in a PhD program working towards a degree in philosophy/religion at Anderson College. Greg was diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder. Greg’s world turned upside down. He spent two years in a group home for the mentally ill. He was homeless and unemployed. But fortunately for Greg, his story doesn’t end there.
Thanks to care he received from a whole team of behavioral health specialists, many of whom were his classmates at Anderson University, and a strong support network, Greg has been in recovery for 26 years. Now as a Certified Recovery Specialist, Greg is putting his story to amazing use.
Greg works for Aspire Indiana at Hudson House, a group home for individuals with severe or persistent Mental Illness. In this role he has the opportunity to use his life experiences to help others in treatment and recovery. His certification demonstrates that he is skilled in enhancing the effectiveness of treatment for those with mental illness and addiction field. He helps residents set goals, work toward them, and re-establish themselves in the community. When clients have lost hope or doubt their own abilities, Greg shares his story.
He tells them that after living in a group home for two years, he went back and finished his Masters of Divinity, with a specialty in mental health chaplaincy and since 1996 has been serving, as Greg would say it, “those who are like me”. He has worked in community mental health centers as a therapist, in residential facilities, and in psychiatric inpatient facilities. He served with the National Alliance on Mental Illness, and is a published author of a book titled, “The Meaning of Faith and Mental Illness”.
Our clients have an affinity for Greg because he goes with them to AA and NA meetings. He desires genuine relationships with them and puts all his effort into helping them in their recovery. Greg is known for continuing to meet with former residents over a soda, or going with them to local ballgames. He is teaching them through example that mental illness, medication and treatment don’t mean your life is over. Greg is giving the opportunity for connectedness.
Greg is taking the isolation out of mental illness. Our residents respect Greg; he has miles on his “shoes”. Greg wouldn’t have it any other way. This is right where he feels called to be. Helping others is a part of their recovery and it’s a part of his.
Maybe we all could use a walk in Greg’s shoes.