Grants aimed at advancing services at rural hospitals will bring important equipment to facilities in Clinton and White counties.
Frankfort and White Memorial hospitals were recently awarded grants from the Indiana Hospital Association through the Small Rural Hospital Improvement Program (SHIP).
“Funding from the SHIP grants allows critical access hospitals like Frankfort and White Memorial to continue to offer the best care for our patients, close to home,” Mary Minier, president of IU Health White Memorial Hospital, said in the announcement.
With the grants from the program, the release stated, both hospitals acquired portable X-Ray machines that improve how hospitals operate, giving care providers an easier time completing tasks.
IU Health, in its announcement, detailed some of the benefits of the new equipment:
- Portable X-Ray machines can help eliminate transporting patients as well as limit their movements. In situations involving critically ill patients, transporting them for chest, skeletal or abdominal X-Rays in the Radiology department could lead to complications.
- The ability to do imaging at patient’s bedside can limit the spread of diseases, like COVID-19. Also, portable X-Ray machines shorten wait times for results, taking less than 20 minutes to complete their scans, providing high quality images allowing doctors and physicians to treat patients quickly. Portable X-Ray machines release significantly less radiation compared to regular machines.
The funding allows Frankfort to support a COVID-19 screener at the hospital’s main entrance. The funding provided two isolation carts used in the inpatient unit of the hospital, as well as upgrade office space for the critical hospital staff.
Coincidentally, White Memorial Hospital purchased five isolation carts to be used in the inpatient unit to go along with window kits for some of the doors in the unit. Each room in the input unit has a solid wood door, the release stated, but adding a window to some of the doors allows doctors to monitor and observe patients suffering from COVID-19.
Outside of isolation carts and window kits, White Memorial Hospital purchased new furniture for the common areas in the medical building and hospital that can be cleaned. The hospital donated the fabric furniture to the Boys & Girls Club of White County, the Monticello Parks and Recreation Department, as well as the County Council on Aging.
How SHIP works
The Health Resources and Services Administration, Federal Office of Rural Health Policy makes funding available to assist small rural and critical access hospitals implement requirements of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
The Indiana State Office of Rural Health provides funding to the Indiana Hospital Association who works with subject matter experts and professional consultants to provide education and training to all eligible hospitals. SHIP eligible hospitals include rural and critical access hospitals with 49 beds or less.
Michael Hemmerle is a 2022 Hoosier State Press Association Pulliam intern for the Journal & Courier during the summ. Hemmerle can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.