Meet a Member: A ‘never boring’ career that constantly challenges, changes, and grows
Nancy Franciotti, BS, RN, CCDS, is the CDI manager at Inspira Health, which is comprised of three hospitals, a comprehensive cancer center, several multi-specialty health centers, and a total of more than 150 access points. Inspira Health serves southern New Jersey and is opening a brand-new 210-bed, state-of-the-art hospital in Mullica Hill. Franciotti started the Inspira CDI program in 2018. It has been successful at improving the quality of documentation and was recently honored by Inspira for its success. She is a member of the Philadelphia/Southern New Jersey/Delaware ACDIS local chapter, began her CDI career in 2009, and sat for her CCDS certification in 2014.
ACDIS: What did you do before entering CDI?
Franciotti: Lots of things! I graduated with a degree in social work and worked in various forms of counseling for the first five years of my professional career. At the five-year mark I was either going to get a master’s or change careers completely. I decided to enter a nursing program. I wanted to still be able to help people, which is really my passion, but in a more holistic manner. My first love was psych nursing, and I was the nurse manager of a neurobehavioral stabilization unit that provided multidisciplinary treatment to children and adults with complex diagnoses who also had severe violent and self-injurious behavior. After my first child was born, I transitioned into case management, which led to CDI.
ACDIS: Why did you get into this line of work?
Franciotti: At the time I entered CDI, case managers really didn’t know much about the profession. 3M did a presentation at my hospital, and I knew I wanted the training. Many were skeptical about whether this was going to be a lasting initiative, but I was game to try it. It’s been the best decision of my professional career.
ACDIS: What has been your biggest challenge?
Franciotti: I think communicating the goals and initiatives of a CDI program to my leaders, to physicians, coding—just gaining the buy-in of key stakeholders. I am so lucky to be in a supportive environment at Inspira, and my CDI program is well supported by my management as well as my participation with ACDIS.
ACDIS: What has been your biggest reward?
Franciotti: I have a career that is constantly challenging, changing, growing—it’s never boring.
ACDIS: How has the field changed since you began working in CDI?
Franciotti: When I first began in the CDI field, we were on paper charts on paper records and calculating key performance indicators manually. Since then, the software options have exploded, CDI efforts have expanded into outpatient, and ACDIS has grown exponentially.
ACDIS: Can you mention a few of the “gold nuggets” of information you’ve received from colleagues on The Forum or through ACDIS?
Franciotti: There are so many! When I was lucky enough to be offered the position as CDI manager at Inspira Health, I immediately reached out to my mentors in the ACDIS organization. I called Melissa Varnavas and Sharme Brodie for advice and they provided me with guidance and led me back to my local chapter. ACDIS has been my touchstone through my entire CDI career and has given me a community of great CDI leaders and educators that are so generous with their knowledge.
ACDIS: If you have attended, how many ACDIS conferences have you been to? What are your favorite memories?
Franciotti: I have attended two large conferences, ICD-10 training with Sharme, and most recently the Leadership Exchange and the Outpatient CDI Symposium in Austin, Texas. Sharme also recommended that I attend the Management Essentials preconference event, which I did in 2019. All these educational events were great experiences for me.
ACDIS: What piece of advice would you offer to a new CDI specialist?
Franciotti: ACDIS membership and active participation is essential. Most of us do not report to a CDI leader, so we need to get our direction from our national organization to stay current with regulations and best practices. Always keep the goal in mind of documentation integrity and clinical truth. Adaptability to a changing healthcare landscape is also key. Adapt or face extinction—learn the lesson of the dinosaur!
ACDIS: If you could have any other job, what would it be?
Franciotti: Screenwriter for film/TV.
ACDIS: What was your first job (what you did while in high school)?
Franciotti: I worked at a shop that sold designer jeans. Jordache jeans and Sasson jeans—I wish I had saved a pair.
ACDIS: Can you tell us about a few of your favorite things?
- Vacation spots: Travel is a passion. My last big trip was to Aruba.
- Hobbies: I love films. In fact, I belong to two movie clubs, one where we meet once a month at a member’s house, drink wine, and watch arthouse or indie films. The other is a horror movie club. I love Broadway and concerts too.
- Non-alcoholic beverage: Flavored seltzer. I drink tons of it.
- Foods: I’m a foodie and love to try new things. There are so many great restaurants in the Philadelphia/Southern New Jersey area.
- Activities: I am a big exercise enthusiast. It’s essential for physical and mental health.
ACDIS: Tell us about your family and how you like to spend your time away from CDI.
Franciotti: I have been married to my husband Bob for 19 years. We have two sons, James (18) and John (14). They are my whole world, and we love traveling together, dinners out, and just hanging out on the weekends.