Care In The Air And On The Ground

September 05, 2017

Louis Auletta prefers to focus on one task, one patient at a time. His wife likes to multi-task – bustling through the burn unit at Riley Hospital meeting with various patients. But together, they have found a relationship that combines their interests and expertise in patient care.

Louis has been a paramedic for nine years and has spent the last year and half flying with LifeLine. Molly has been a nurse for 11 years, the past nine she has worked for Riley Hospital.

“It makes for great dinner conversation,” said Louis. “We empathize with each other. If one of us has had a tough day, there’s someone at home to help you debrief,” said Molly.

Married 10 years, both turn 40 this month. They moved to Indiana from their native New Mexico eight years ago and are the parents of three children – the youngest one, a girl, lives at home with them and keeps them active attending dance recitals and competitions.

When they were first introduced by mutual friends Louis was already working as a paramedic and encouraged Molly to take an EMT class. She went on to obtain her Bachelors and Masters degrees in nursing and has encouraged Louis as he begins his nursing degree.

“Molly has been my inspiration to go back to school but I don’t know if I could do what she does working on the hospital floor. I like focusing on one patient at a time and that’s what I love about working with Lifeline,” said Louis. Molly doesn’t like to fly and says she welcomes the fast-pace on the ground.

“Because the burn unit at Riley is in ICU, we never know when something critical will roll through the door. The burn nurses care for both patients on the floor and those who need lifesaving immediate care, so it’s always something new,” said Molly.

“Almost a year ago I was trying to decide if I needed to move to another unit and we got a patient with a very large body surface area burn who should not have survived,” she says. “He did and I realized then that it was the surgical advances and technology that kept him alive. That was what reaffirmed that I was where I needed to be. Also the extraordinary nursing care by the team – the diligence to help this child fight for his life.”

When they are away from work the two challenge each other to research and learn about advances in their fields.

“Having someone who understands the patient care conversations means it either doesn’t become old or it naturally comes to a close,” said Louis, known for making amazing Cuban dishes he learned from his mother who was born in Havana. In their free time they like to play games, work puzzles, garden and discover fun things around Indiana.

“I think the strength of our relationship career wise is that we continue to encourage each other to problem solve and get better each day,” said Molly.

-- By T.J. Banes, Associate Senior Journalist at IU Health.
Reach Banes via email at
T.J. Banes or on Twitter @tjbanes.

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