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May 14, 2024

Teresa Burns retires after over four decades of service

IU Health Tipton Hospital

Teresa Burns retires after over four decades of service

By Emma Avila, epackard1@iuhealth.org, writer for IU Health’s Indianapolis Suburban Region

After 45 years at IU Health Tipton, Teresa Burns, is retiring. She hopes her long career at the hospital will leave a legacy of support behind.

Teresa Burns has worked at IU Health Tipton for 45 years, almost to the day. After a long and robust career within the walls of the hospital, she is retiring.

Burns first began working at the hospital as a nurse long before it was called IU Health Tipton, in 1979. She worked on the Medical-Surgical Unit until 1986, when she joined the hospital’s IV team, changing IV tubing and bags.

“I always like to take care of people,” Burns says. “It’s a calling. Nursing is a calling.”

In 1988, the manager position opened for the Medical-Surgical unit and Burns applied. She got the job. Soon after, she oversaw the Oncology department as well.

“I think it was a natural evolution,” she explains. “I wanted to go into that role, to treat people fairly, to let people know we appreciated them.”

Burns applied for another leadership role in 2004, the director of Acute Care Services. Within her 15 years in that role, she at times oversaw the Medical-Surgical, Oncology and Emergency departments as well as the Clinical Decision Unit, Intensive Care Unit, Education Services and Case Management. She was also the hospital’s emergency preparedness coordinator.

Her current role, which she began in 2019, is project manager for clinical operations. She helped implement any projects designated a strategic priority by IU Health.

Burns also was the hospital’s Pathway to Excellence® Director. She played a major part in the hospital receiving the Pathway to Excellence® designation from the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) in 2022. The Pathway designation is a global credential that highlights IU Health Tipton’s commitment to creating a healthy work environment where nurses feel empowered and valued.

After a storied career, she will miss the place she has considered a second home for decades.

“I want to retire. It’s just I’m going to miss everyone,” she says. “It’s just going to be hard not coming in every day. This has been my purpose all these years to make this the best place it can be.”

Hospital team members held a retirement party for Burns to say goodbye and thank her for her many years of dedication to team members and patients.

She hopes the legacy she leaves behind will make a lasting impact.

“I hope I was here to make improvements in people’s lives and to support our IU Health Tipton team.”

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