Experience at home

Dr. Stephanie Wagner’s experience working at a nursing home in high school started her on a path toward a career in the medical field. The journey now has brought her to Columbus Regional Hospital, where she is its newest medical oncologist.

She brings with her an extensive specialty in brain, head and neck cancers.

Most recently she worked at the Indiana University Simon Cancer Center. When Wagner sought a different opportunity, she said Columbus was appealing, adding that it’s a tight community and supports its health system.

“I wanted to stay in Indiana and I didn’t want to go far and I wanted to work in a smaller community,” said Wagner, who started at Columbus Regional on Aug. 10.

She said her schedule already is filled with patients. That’s fine, she said, because she learned early on while working in the nursing home that she enjoyed the interaction with people.

“I try to act like myself. I try to act real with patients,” she said.

The addition of Wagner coincides with the expansion of Columbus Regional’s Cancer Center, and hopes for expanding the center’s reach.

“What we want to do here … is give the type of care not offered in the region,” Wagner said.

The goal is to expand the types of care so patients don’t have to travel to Indianapolis or Louisville, but can stay closer to home, she added.

Wagner said she hopes at some point Columbus Regional can offer clinical trials for new drugs, something typically offered at hospitals in large, urban settings.

“Typically, community hospitals don’t have a lot of clinical trials,” she said.

Wagner said she hopes to leverage her IU connections to facilitate the clinical trials.

Clinical trials are important, she said, because in some cases they might be a person’s last option.

Dr. Stephanie Wagner

Age: 44

Occupation: Medical oncologist at Columbus Regional Hospital

Hometown: Brownsburg

Background:

  • Medical director of the neuro-oncology program at IU Health; clinical associate professor of medicine, hematology/oncology at the IU School of Medicine in Indianapolis.
  • Director of the neuro-oncology program at the Norton Cancer Institute, Louisville Oncology, Louisville, Kentucky.
  • Neuro-oncology fellow at The Robert Tisch Brain Tumor Center, Duke University, Durham, North Carolina.
  • Chief fellow, Division of Medical Oncology/Hematology, University of Louisville, James Graham Brown Cancer Center, Louisville, Kentucky.
  • Fellow, Division of Medical Oncology/Hematology, University of Louisville, James Graham Brown Cancer Center, Louisville, Kentucky.

Family: Husband, Patrick Glancy; three cats

Author photo
Kirk Johannesen is assistant managing editor of The Republic. He can be reached at johannesen@therepublic.com or (812) 379-5639.