The Huntsville Hospital Foundation (HHF) is marking its 40-year anniversary this month.
Katherine Craine, Foundation CEO, says the not-for-profit was founded in February of 1984. Since then, she says donors have helped the foundation stock the entire hospital with lifesaving equipment.
“Every piece of equipment in the hospital is due to the generosity of this community,” says Craine. “People don’t realize that the government does not provide the funding for equipment in the hospital. This hospital would not run without the donations from our community.”
Currently the HHF’s focus is on imaging, and Craine says they hope to make a final push over the summer to fund Muskoka’s first MRI. While that’s the biggest-ticket item, Craine says plenty of smaller diagnostic purchases have already been made. “We’ve already had one new x-ray room put in over the last year, and now we’re ordering another. Those pieces of equipment are brand-new and state of the art,” she says.
According to Craine, other milestones since she joined in 2015 include a new foundation office and changes to the board and staffing levels. “When I came there were three staff, and now we’re at seven. We just hired a finance director, so we’re positioning ourselves for the future,” says Craine.
Looking to the next 40 years, Craine says Muskoka Algonquin Healthcare’s hospital redevelopment project will fittingly be at the top of the list. The foundation typically provides the hospital with about $1.6-million each year, according to Craine. However, she says the redevelopment will mean roughly $50-million coming from the foundation over the next eight to 10 years.
That’s not to mention keeping the current hospital up and running in the meantime. “It’s like having a house. You have to make sure your house is running efficiently, even if you’re going to put on an addition or going to build a new one. You can’t just let things go while you’re raising money for the next project,” says Craine.
Craine adds they plan to celebrate the anniversary with a garden party this summer, inviting past board members, medical professionals, and longtime donors—some of which have been with the foundation since its founding.