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This week, Dr. Rudy Kachmann made his way to Lutheran’s Administrative offices following a phone call suggesting that he come in to discuss the wellness program at Lutheran Hospital. When he arrived, expecting that he would be asked to expand the program as Medical Wellness Director for LHN, he was told that his several-year contract was terminated. He asked if he might continue to present programs on such topics as reversing diabetes in the auditorium, and he was told that they would let him know next week. Ironically, the Lutheran Hospital Auditorium is named the Kachmann Auditorium in honor of his contributions.

Dr. Kachmann is well known in Indiana. His early career was in neurosurgery, and when he retired from surgical practice he embarked on what has become a second career in wellness. He has written books, appeared on television and given lectures around the region. His passion for using nutrition and natural methods for staying well and for treating illness led him to found the Kachmann Mind Body Institute.

One might pass this off as yet another instance of callous CHS cost-cutting–another abrupt firing with little regard for years of devoted service to Lutheran. More importantly, however–and Dr. Kachmann would agree in an instant–this would seem to be another step backward in health care. The methodology of the widely popular mind and body approach to wellness–a natural approach aligning exercise, proper diet, and mental focus–can be successful in treating obesity, type II diabetes, back pain and even some types of anxiety and panic attacks. Like all treatments, it is not always successful, and it is not universally accepted on every point, but it is a growing segment of healthcare that melds nicely with hospital’s broader, population-health, community mission. Not only was the handling insensitive, it sends wrong signals regarding CHS’s support for health and wellness. Dr. Rudy Kachmann deserves better–and so do LHN patient