When Samaritan Hospital stepped out of Alexandria Bay in Upstate New York, the community decided they couldn’t afford to lose their hospital. As volunteers, they reopened the hospital to serve their entire community.
“We had to rebuild all of our record-keeping by hand,” said Karen Peters, River Hospital Marketing Specialist. “Our staff has been incredibly faithful and dedicated.”
Betterment wanted to help, so more than 85 canoers and kayakers joined together on the St. Lawrence Seaway for the 2003 Paddle to support the River Hospital. The success of the event enabled Betterment to make an immediate impact on the daily operations of the hospital with the purchase of two much-needed stretchers for the emergency room.
The River Hospital serves more than 15 people daily during the winter and up to 40 in the summer in their emergency room facilities, so the stretchers are used every day.
“A lot of our people are elderly and the higher stretchers are very difficult to get on and off. These new lower stretchers are very critical for them. They are a godsend, safe and new and very helpful,” commented Karen.
Today, the River Hospital continues to serve hundreds of families in Upstate New York. And recently, they were able to expand their facilities by opening clinical examining rooms for visiting doctors.
“You can’t imagine how much the Betterment event lifted the spirits of many of us who have fought such a long and arduous battle to retain our small but vital hospital,” said River Hospital Board Member Laura Coles. “To receive the enthusiastic support of your organization was truly a blessing.”