Friday, June 24, 2005

St. Luke's Foundation grants $400,000 to hospital

The St. Luke's Wood River Foundation has awarded approximately $394,000 to St. Luke's Wood River Medical Center for equipment, projects and programs. In addition, during the foundation's board of directors' quarterly meeting June 16, more than $23,700 was awarded to three other nonprofit community health care providers to fund various programs.

Bruce Jensen, CEO of St. Luke's Wood River Medical Center, and Peter Kremer, president of the St. Luke's Wood River Foundation, said in a joint statement, "We cannot thank our donors enough for the important role that their gifts play in our ability to care for each person who comes through our doors. It is through the community's support that St. Luke's Wood River Medical Center will realize our vision to become 'America's Finest Community Hospital.'"

Approved requests for funding from the foundation include:

· A new lab information system for the hospital that will help improve lab-test turn-around times and enhance access to archived records.

· Two additional state-of-the-art anesthesia machines for the Surgery Department, where more than 1,600 inpatient and outpatients procedures are performed each year.

· New vital-signs monitors for the Emergency Department, enhancing and contributing to more efficient delivery of care for the 6,400 patients who visit the emergency room annually.

· Funding for Emergency Medical Services enhancements that will improve communication between the ER medical staff and local EMS technicians.

· Money for clinical education that will increase the depth of knowledge for clinical staff while enhancing patient care.

Dr. Scott McLean, a foundation board member, praised the funding of the grants. "Without the continued donor commitments from annual appeal donations, restricted gifts and endowment earnings as a vehicle that enables the foundation to grant the requests, medical services within the Wood River Valley would not be at the par they currently are," he said.

The hospital will also receive seed money to support "Circle of Friends," an employee assistance program that stems from the hospital's strategic objective to become the "employer of choice" in the Wood River Valley.

The St. Luke's Wood River Center for Community Health will receive support for its YAK! (Youth Adult Konnections) initiative that builds community collaboration within the youth sector, as well as support for the center's annual Community Health Conference.

Other community health care providers receiving funding are: The Walker Center/Project Respect, to assist in reducing drug and alcohol abuse among youths in the Wood River Valley; The Rape Awareness Task Force, to assist with their Rape Awareness Week held each October; and the Salmon River Clinic, located in Stanley.

Martha Reed, the foundation's past president and Development Committee chairwoman, presented the funding awards during the meeting. All the requests were unanimously approved.

"In addition to providing funds for essential hospital programs, services and capital needs, the foundation is committed to helping other community health care providers," Reed said. "The programs and services we support are helping people in the Wood River Valley achieve and maintain a healthy lifestyle."

The St. Luke's Wood River Foundation seeks to enhance and sustain health care services in the Wood River Valley. The foundation provides assistance to St. Luke's Wood River Medical Center and other community health providers by generating and managing resources of time, talent and funding.

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