For Immediate Release: March 2021
The landscape of rural health and wellness has been re-drawn by the COVID-19 pandemic. The challenges of living in “small-town America” have been amplified, including gaining access to quality medical care, attracting and retaining physicians, and providing transportation for routine and emergency matters.
With ears to the ground and partners in the community, The Mary McClellan Foundation (MMF) has worked to engage in our community’s journey this past year. Remarkably, the towns of Cambridge, Easton, Greenwich, Jackson, Salem, White Creek, and Hoosick Falls have managed to bring innovative health-related ideas and programs to fruition in this turbulent time.
MMF has been funding health initiatives in the area formerly served by the Mary McClellan Hospital since 2007 after the hospital closed in 2003. We are committed to filling gaps in medical care, emergency services, and community education. We have invested more than $2 Million into local health centers, EMS companies, and care facilities since 2007.
In the spring of 2020, MMF acted quickly to grant emergency funds to local rescue squads to help cover the cost of PPE and other increased operating costs not covered by the Federal CARES Act. COVID 19 crisis funding was given to the Cambridge Valley Rescue Squad, Salem Rescue Squad, and the Town Hoosick Rescue Squad, totaling $30,000. We are very open to helping entities that need immediate funding due to COVID-19 needs and costs.
Access to mental health providers remains a persistent problem in Upstate New York. MMF continues to fund the groundbreaking Behavioral Health Program operated by Parsons Child & Family Center at Cambridge Central School. This partnership provides mental health services to students and families, often via telehealth, to supplement primary care referrals that can take months to arrange. MMF has given $60,000 to this program since its start in 2016.
This year, MMF awarded the Warren-Washington RSVP $6,000 to fund its medical transportation program which provides safe rides to medical appointments for seniors in our community. MMF also awarded $20,000 to Battenkill Community Services to hire a Registered Nurse to provide a broader array of day services and opportunities to their clientele.
Another challenge in our community continues to be attracting and retaining quality physicians. MMF has partnered with Glens Falls Hospital to offer medical school loan forgiveness. A local doctor recently reached the 5-year mark in residence here, due in part to a $100,000 medical school loan forgiveness grant from MMF. We hope to extend this offer to more doctors in the near future.
MMF is proud to support more specific ventures in the community as well, such as purchasing an AED for the Bancroft Library in Salem ($1625). The Center for Nursing and Rehabilitation at Hoosick Falls received $19,710 to purchase wheelchairs, bariatric beds, and oxygen concentrators. Twin Rivers, PC in Hoosick Falls was awarded $10,000 to fund the construction of Airborne Infection Isolation Rooms.
In addition, The Cambridge Valley Rescue Squad was awarded $19,000 to purchase a Lifepak 15 emergency monitor and defibrillator, and The Greenwich First Responders (Greenwich Fire Department) received $8,928 to purchase software and a laptop to manage real-time patient care. This money will also fund ZOLL AED Plus Trainers and replacement pads to enhance their community outreach and training. The Town of Hoosick Rescue Squad received $20,000 toward their LifePak Monitor Enhancement Program. The Salem Rescue Squad received $20,000 to purchase a Stryker MTS power load fastener system, and The Easton-Greenwich Rescue Squad was awarded $15,000 to purchase video laryngoscopes, ZOLL Pro AEDs, binder lifts, portable suction units, extrication helmets and clothing, and a Toughbook laptop.
The Mary McClellan Foundation is now accepting grant applications for 2021 from organizations that address the health or wellness needs of residents previously served by the Mary McClellan Hospital. Nonprofit organizations are eligible for grant support. Organizations interested in obtaining applications or information about the MMF are invited to visit the website at www.marymcclellanfoundation.org or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Applications are due on Monday, September 13, 2021.
The Mary McClellan Foundation Board is comprised of residents from a variety of backgrounds, including health care and business. Board members work to make informed decisions regarding the many grant applications submitted each year. Drawing on focused research, professional knowledge and community input, we consider how to best steward our funds to serve the interest of the communities in Cambridge, Easton, Greenwich, Jackson, Salem, White Creek, and Hoosick Falls. All of the MMF Board Members live in the communities we serve.