Long-time cancer physician to be recognized for effect on patients’ lives


Staff report


Mary Lou Mayer

Grace, sincerity, honesty.

Those three words could be to describe the approach Mary Lou Mayer, MD, takes in treating all of the patients who have turned to her for their cancer care for more than two decades.

And that’s why this hematologist and oncologist will be honored as the latest recipient of the Healing Hands Award, presented quarterly by Franciscan St. Francis Health.

With her family and her private practice staff joining her, Mayer will receive the award May 9 at her office adjacent to the Franciscan St. Francis-Indianapolis campus.

“Since 1993, Dr. Mayer has had a dramatic impact on her patients, families and co-workers,” said Dr. Christopher “Topper” Doehring, vice president of medical affairs for Franciscan St. Francis. “She strives to be available when needed to answer questions, mentor staff and support her patients with a compassionate yet honest prognosis and treatment plan.”

That same sentiment is echoed by one of Mayer’s staff members, who nominated her for the award.

“In oncology, we celebrate our survivorship and guide our patients and families through all aspects of treatment,” wrote nurse Angela May. “At the most difficult times in a disease process, when a physician determines a customized plan of care, Dr. Mayer relays options with the kind of honesty I would want from my physician.”

Mayer is board-certified in internal medicine, medical oncology and hematology. She is a member of the Indiana State Medical Society, Hoosier Oncology Group, American College of Physicians and American Society.

An Indianapolis resident, Mayer earned a degree in agriculture at Purdue University, where she also studied chemical engineering. She earned her medical degree from the Indiana University School of Medicine, where she also completed residency training in internal medicine and a fellowship in hematology and oncology.

The Healing Hands Award recognizes Franciscan St. Francis physicians for excellence in clinical skills, patient relations, research, stewardship and reflection of the hospital’s care ministry, values and mission.