Letter to the Editor: Veterans Memorial Hospital is more than just numbers

To the Editor:

Rarely, in any given situation, is there only one side to a story. “Facts” are often skewed by emotion, history, or simple miscommunication. In light of recent publicity regarding Veterans Memorial Hospital, we would like to offer another point of view.

VMH is not just numbers, cost reports, or profit/loss margins. While these things are important to address, we are so much more than that. VMH has been, and will remain, part of the fabric of this community. It is staffed by dedicated individuals who have, in many instances, made this facility, and the patients we serve, our life’s work. Together we represent hundreds of years of combined experience caring for your loved ones. We have done so on a shoestring budget, so we are very aware of the dollars and cents of being a small rural hospital.

But the climate of healthcare is like any other business - there are always going to be peaks and valleys. Right now, for a multitude of reasons, we are experiencing one of those valleys. However, we cannot allow this to taint the successes we have had in the past, or overshadow our mission and vision for the future.

We make every effort to make the best decisions we can in a system with many moving parts, many of which we do not control. Sometimes those decisions do not pan out as anticipated. Many people have been in the same position. However, that does not mean that we give up. It simply means we make adjustments, and move forward.

Never doubt the dedication or the tenacity of the employees of Veterans Memorial Hospital. This isn’t just our place of employment, but a place of care for us, our family, and our friends. For the well being of all, we are dedicated to making this a viable and thriving facility. We consider it an honor to care for anyone passing through our doors, and will fight to maintain a significant presence in the community.

Just like in any illness, it’s important to get accurate information to diagnose the problem. Once that is done, a plan of care is formulated, and action taken to carry out that plan. Positive thinking plays a major role in this process. Our situation is no different. We are identifying problems, planning corrective measures, and taking action to carry this out. As Steve Jobs said, “Great things in business are never done by one person. They are done by a team of people.”

Thank you for your support,

Machelle Bulman, RN
Diane Butikofer, RN
Bailey Estebo, RN
Ruth Hageman, RN
Brianne Leikvold, RN
Suzette Mahoney, RN
Lisa Moose, RN
Tanya Schnuelle, RN
Trish Shelton, RN
Geralyn Smith, RN
Becky Welper, RN
and the entire Nursing staff at Veterans
Memorial Hospital


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