A Message From the Administrator

In 2012, the hospital’s Board of Directors was searching for someone with the  expertise and experience to help resurrect the closed nursing home and the nearly closed BHC hospital and clinic. They selected me due to my past turnaround experience to start October 31st 2012. 
I discovered BHC had only 12 employees, was $2.8 million in debt, substantial negative days of cash on hand, no nursing home income and very limited laboratory revenue.  I did not see a viable way for operations to continue without a huge infusion of cash!  I asked the board to consider;  1) closing of the hospital; 2) engagement of a bankruptcy attorney; 3) raising $1.5 million in 60 days. Your board members, among the best-educated and dedicated board members in Montana, gave me the blessing to pursue all three simultaneously. 
The community responded to the latter alternative and raised $1.2 million in loans and gifts that came in from the general public, employees, board members and  businesses, including State Bank of Townsend, RY Timber, Graymont Mines, and Bob’s Supermarket. The Barb Kirscher Auction alone raised more the $40,000. 
The nursing home reopening was our first order of business. Its closure meant losing almost $70,000 in lost monthly revenue. Due to several Sate and Federal approvals required to reopen the nursing home, it took until the winter of 2014 to be awarded the license to open. 
The community has consequently shown its support by passing mill levies both through 2013 and 2015, with the last amount at $170,000. We continue to operate as a not-for-profit hospital — we ultimately write off about $500,000 per year for charity care and bad debt. 
We have some really great outcomes daily at BHC, here are a few: 
A life was saved by a lifeguard who’d been trained by local experts with the assistance of local club contributions — the individual was ultimately transported to BHC and was revived by our nurses, EMTs and medical staff. 
An individual driving through Townsend was not feeling well and appeared at the BHC Emergency Department — the individual was diagnosed as being in cardiac arrest, and administered a $6,500 medication that BHC has in its inventory. The patient was then transported to an appropriate facility in time for treatment. 
A burn unit in Utah called to commend our team on the excellent preparation of a burn victim, giving praise on how our fire department EMT’s, sherriff’s squad and hospital staff worked together to save a life. 
Our social worker, in partnership with practitioners, quite frequently has spoken with individuals who are depressed. The work done has prevented people from self-harm. 
In mid- September, as a result of the Helmsley Grant, BHC will be replacing a 16-slice CT with a 64-slice CT. The improved technology will allow for more expanded diagnostics. 
Averra eCare will be implemented in the Emergency Room, allowing staff to communicate with board-certified emergency room personnel in South Dakota. BHC’s team will be strengthened by the expertise and assistance in a tertiary-care hospital. 
BHC is also applying for a grant to replace our X-ray equipment. All of these additions will help better serve the residents of Broadwater County. 
We continue to offer CT scanning, ultrasound, MRI, Dexa, mammography, and an Emergency Department and full-service lab available 24/7.   
Much has been achieved working with the community to have a sustainable thriving health center. We continually improve the quality of existing services, and look to add new services. We’re proud to have social worker and licensed addictions counselor integrated with our primary care family practice clinic, one of the first in Montana! 
As we look to the future, the existing building has been well-maintained, but it is 34 years old. Like every critical access hospital in Montana and the country, we need your support. If you’re not using us, share with us why so that we can make the changes that would bring you back to try us again!