Perinatal Social Worker Receives Award | News | Loyola Medicine

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Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Loyola Medicine Perinatal Social Worker Receives National Award for Excellence

Loyola Medicine social worker Rasa Ragas, LSW

MAYWOOD, IL – Rasa Ragas, LSW, was awarded the National Association of Perinatal Social Work Award for Excellence at the organization's recent national conference.

Ms. Ragas is a perinatal social worker at Loyola Medicine, where she works with families in Loyola's neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), obstetrics & gynecology department, labor & delivery department and high-risk obstetrics.

"For more than 25 years, Rasa has been fiercely devoted to this special population of patients," said Jessica Soos Pawlowski, director of care management at Loyola. "She is relentless in her advocacy for her patients and a mentor to so many social workers at Loyola and across the country."

Among Ms. Ragas' duties is the assessment of postpartum depression, including referrals, counseling for women with prolonged hospitalizations and high-risk pregnancies, and providing support for women who have experienced the loss of an infant. 

"I enjoy having the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of our smallest babies while supporting their families in times of crisis," Ms. Ragas said. 

Ms. Ragas, of Westchester, Illinois, also publishes in the area of ethics and social work, especially related to infants of drug-addicted mothers. 

About Loyola Medicine and Trinity Health

Loyola Medicine, a member of Trinity Health, is a quaternary care system based in the western suburbs of Chicago that includes Loyola University Medical Center (LUMC), Gottlieb Memorial Hospital, MacNeal Hospital and convenient locations offering primary and specialty care services from 1,877 physicians throughout Cook, Will and DuPage counties. LUMC is a 547-licensed-bed hospital in Maywood that includes the William G. and Mary A. Ryan Center for Heart & Vascular Medicine, the Cardinal Bernardin Cancer Center, a Level 1 trauma center, Illinois's largest burn center, a certified comprehensive stroke center and a children’s hospital. Having delivered compassionate care for over 50 years, Loyola also trains the next generation of caregivers through its teaching affiliation with Loyola University Chicago’s Stritch School of Medicine and Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing. Gottlieb is a 247-licensed-bed community hospital in Melrose Park with 150 physician offices, an adult day care program, the Gottlieb Center for Fitness, the Loyola Center for Metabolic Surgery and Bariatric Care and the Loyola Cancer Care & Research at the Marjorie G. Weinberg Cancer Center at Melrose Park. MacNeal Hospital is a 374-bed teaching hospital in Berwyn with advanced inpatient and outpatient medical, surgical and psychiatric services, advanced diagnostics and treatments. MacNeal has a 12-bed acute rehabilitation unit, a 25-bed inpatient skilled nursing facility, and a 68-bed behavioral health program and community clinics. MacNeal has provided quality, patient-centered care to the near west suburbs since 1919.

Trinity Health is one of the largest multi-institutional Catholic healthcare systems in the nation, serving diverse communities that include more than 30 million people across 22 states. Trinity Health includes 92 hospitals, as well as 109 continuing care locations that include PACE programs, senior living facilities and home care and hospice services. Its continuing care programs provide nearly 2.5 million visits annually. Based in Livonia, Mich., and with annual operating revenues of $18.3 billion and assets of $26.2 billion, the organization returns $1.1 billion to its communities annually in the form of charity care and other community benefit programs. Trinity employs about 129,000 colleagues, including 7,800 employed physicians and clinicians. Committed to those who are poor and underserved in its communities, Trinity is known for its focus on the country's aging population. As a single, unified ministry, the organization is the innovator of Senior Emergency Departments, the largest not-for-profit provider of home health care services—ranked by number of visits—in the nation, as well as the nation’s leading provider of PACE (Program of All Inclusive Care for the Elderly) based on the number of available programs.