The John T. Vucurevich Foundation recently announced an $86,943 grant award to Horizon Health Care, Inc. (Horizon). Founded in 1989, the John T. Vucurevich Foundation, a private independent foundation, awards grants supporting the advancement of the arts, education and science, and the promotion of social welfare within South Dakota, with preference given to the West River area and in particular the Black Hills. The grant will be used to implement a data backup solution that will protect vital patient information while responding to disasters.
Horizon’s service area includes twenty-four clinics including nine West River clinics; four of which are located within the top forty poorest counties in the United States. “Patients in Horizon’s service area deserve the same level of care as those receiving care from larger health systems. This level of care includes the protection of patient information within the electronic health record (EHR) system. As part of delivering quality care, it’s vital that our healthcare providers have ready access to the EHR while treating patients, especially during a disaster,” says Scott Weatherill, Chief Information Officer for Horizon. This opportunity through the Foundation will help Horizon maintain its level of quality care by ensuring access to patient information within the EHR during a disaster.
Responding to disasters is something Horizon needs to be ready for. During natural disasters including tornadoes and ice storms as well as technological disasters such as equipment failures and cyber-attacks, having technology to back up patient data is critical. If Horizon’s clinics were to lose access to the EHR and vital patient information is unavailable, this directly affects care. “The Foundation’s gift will greatly enhance Horizon’s ability to recover from potential disaster,” according to Weatherill.
The focus of the John T. Vucurevich Foundation is primarily given to charitable organizations which are committed to helping the poor, distressed, and under privileged in this region. Horizon’s mission includes a similar commitment by providing high-quality healthcare regardless of the patient’s ability to pay.
For over 35 years, Horizon Health Care, Inc. has been providing personalized, affordable, high-quality medical, dental and mental health care through a rural, community-based network in South Dakota. Horizon is a Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) that serves the medical, dental and mental health care needs of South Dakotans in rural, medically underserved areas through 82,000 patient visits annually in 24 community health centers in: Aberdeen, Bison, Bryant, De Smet, Eagle Butte, Faith, Fort Thompson, Howard, Huron, Isabel, La Plant, Lake Preston, Martin, McIntosh, Mission, Plankinton, Wessington Springs, White River and Woonsocket.