History of Lawrence County Memorial Hospital Part 2
During the first 10 years of operation, Lawrence County Memorial had five administrators to guide its management. The average number of employees went from 58 to 126 in 1960. Part of the forward-look in 1963 included a new parking lot, freshly painted patient rooms, new entrance way to the lobby and the glass partition between the kitchen and the cafeteria dining room. A new Hot-Pak food service was installed in early 1965 with donations from the Endowment and Development Foundation. In the early part of 1963 employees were offered a new wage and benefit program. New room rates to be effective September 1965:
wards… – – – $16.50 per day; Semi private – – – $19 per day; Private room – – – $23 per day
In 1970 the hospital replaced its old x-ray film developer processor with the new system allowing a completely processed film in 90 seconds. In April 1970 the board authorized a remodeling project for the care of acute coronary cases. In March 1972 the first associate physician from the family practice program arrived to receive his rural training from local medical staff. June 7, 1974 the hospital board authorized a radiology laboratory remodeling project and in 1975 was notified of their full accreditation once again with the joint commission. In 1985 the hospital selected a new logo and slogan –“modern progressive healthcare.” In December 1985 CT scanning was available. Earlier in 1985 the hospital saw the beginnings of the cardiopulmonary services, treadmilll stress testing and Holter monitoring.
LCMH instituted short stay surgery as a part of their outpatient program in 1985. The patient satisfaction program –Pride- was instituted September 1, 1985. Early 1986 found the hospital planning the cardiac rehabilitation unit. Through a generous donation the hospital received a birthing bed for a new method of delivery. Meals for the maternity families were also instituted. The swing bed program in 1988 expanded the care available at the facility. During 1987 the hospital opened a 16 bed psychiatric unit located on the West Wing of the second-floor. The pharmacy with a unit dose system as well as IV mixtures employed a full-time pharmacist. The satellite clinic in the Sumner Med Center began.
Dr. E. A. Fahnenstock was made chief of staff in 1950; Dr. Gary Carr was Chief of Staff in 1990. Dr. R. T. Kirkwood, Dr. R. C. Kirkwood, Dr. R. O. Illyes and Dr. C. W. Cullison were on the first medical staff. The first patient was Mrs. Ella Bunn, age 82, of Sumner. The first living baby delivered by Dr. R. T. Kirkwood was William E. Kaiser. The third patient and first surgical case was Gene Hinderliter. The surgery was performed by Dr. Joe Smith and he was assisted by Dr. R. T. Kirkwood. During the first six months 1200 patients were admitted. The 1000th baby born was a girl to Mr. and Mrs. William Allen on Friday, February 13, 1953.
Physical therapy was started September 10, 1953 with Elizabeth Stretch as therapist. During 1955 there were 623 surgeries, 90 deaths, 2925 people treated as outpatients. The largest census day was April 14, 1958 was 68 adults and eight babies. The East wing was closed as far as patient rooms on June 1, 1960 with this area being used for office space. In 1990 the hospital had 161 full and part-time employees, 10 active staff physicians , 13 consulting staff physicians, and 10 employees with the Allied healthcare staff. The first set of twins were born to Norma and Elmer Eagleson on August 18, 1958-- Dennis and Deborah. The first baby born in July 1990 on the 40th anniversary of the hospital was a boy to Mr. and Mrs. Rick Land, Rick being an employee of the hospital. In 1990 there were 19 employees working at the hospital who had also been born there.
The 10 administrators between 1950 and 1990 were Mrs. Nellie Lowe(1949-1950), Mr. James Frohbieter (1950-1952), Mr. Byron Landholt, (1952-1956), Mr. Charles Lohr (1956-1959), Mr. Harlan Newkirk (1960-?) , Mr. William Deems, Mr. Harry Querry, Mr. Donald Blomgren, Dr. Wendell Trent, and Mr. Gerald Waldroup.