Foundation will help hospital remain local

Roosevelt General Hospital CEO Larry Leaming says RGH belongs to the people of Roosevelt County and he wants to ensure it will stay that way.

In efforts to strengthen RGH while listening to public input, organizers began working on the RGH Foundation last year, which will give community members a chance to directly support the hospital.

The foundation has been created to help generate financial support for the hospital as well as provide much needed resources to see RGH improve its services and grow, according to Leaming. The foundation received itπs official non-profit status earlier this month.

"I've heard the story numerous times about how Roosevelt County lost its hospital and how devastating it was for the community," Leaming said. "The good people of Roosevelt County stood up, formed a special hospital district, raised the necessary funds, and built themselves a hospital. It may not be as large as the old hospital or be able to provide all the services it used to provide, but RGH is here and it has survived for 11 years."

Leaming said the foundation was formed to provide a vehicle for individuals to help make a difference in peopleπs lives by improving the health and healthcare of Roosevelt County citizens.

"Healthcare and hospitals are undergoing a tremendous amount of change," Leaming said. "It's becoming extremely difficult to cover the high cost of care and simply survive."

The foundation board of directors is comprised of RGH staff and communitymembers.

"It is amazing to see this group of positive Roosevelt County leaders working so hard to build this foundation from the ground up," said RGH Foundation Director Amber Hamilton.

"Each director brings a powerful presence to the group and willingly volunteers their time and efforts to help establish a strong foundation to help financially support this hospital."

The foundation will explore multiple funding sources in the community, according to Hamilton.

"We envision residents and businesses as potential donors," Hamilton said. "This also opens up the door to explore more grant funding opportunities."

The foundation started accepting financial contributions this month, according to Hamilton.

RGH Foundation President Glen O'Rear said his vision for the foundation involves the communityπs help in ensuring the hospital continues to serve the county beyond his lifetime.

"The hospital has helped countless people, including my own family, and many of those people want a way to express their appreciation to the hospital and to ensure its existence," O'Rear said. "Establishing this foundation provides a simple way for anyone to contribute to the cause and be guaranteed their donation will be used to benefit the hospital and those it serves."

O'Rear added his role is to help make sure the structure of the foundation is set up properly so the foundation can concentrate on fundraising and using the income from those donated funds to support the mission of the hospital.

"Roosevelt County's support for their local hospital and dedication to its survival and growth is unquestioned," Leaming added. "The dedication and sacrifice of all the courageous RGH staff and physicians who have kept the hospital going these past 11 years is also unquestioned."

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