“No One Left In The Dark”
(HOWARD, SD) – NorthWestern Energy has given a $10,000 gift to Horizon Health Foundation in support of their COVID-19 efforts. The donation will be used to provide personal protection equipment (PPE) to Horizon Health Care workers and to help keep staff employed.
Horizon Health Care is a non-for-profit entity with 32 health centers that serve 22 rural communities across South Dakota. Over half of these centers are in the same service territory as NorthWestern Energy which provides reliable, safe and affordable energy in these communities.
Tom Glanzer, Community Relations Manager for NorthWestern Energy, lost his father, Representative Bob Glanzer and a cousin, 51-year-old Mari Hofer of Huron, to COVID-19. Rep. Glanzer was a long-time healthcare advocate, heavily invested in South Dakota’s rural and reservation communities and Hofer was a third-grade teacher.
“It’s a good time to refocus and remind the public that this is not over,” said Tom Glanzer. “It is an honor to be a part of a company that cares so much for our customers, and NorthWestern Energy’s gift is important to my family, my father’s legacy, my cousin’s legacy and every employee of the company because it reaches some of the most vulnerable members of our communities with the critical health services they need.”
The gift helps Horizon serve nearly 28,000 rural South Dakota residents safely during the crisis. Currently, Horizon uses its supply of PPE quickly in order to protect patients and caregivers.
For a provider to wear an N-95 mask, gown, procedure mask, and a face shield it costs on average $15.25 per use. To purchase 1,500 N-95 masks it costs $3,000 dollars and lasts Horizon approximately 3 weeks.
As the state unemployment rate rises, Horizon is anticipating a 5-10% increase in patient load, at a cost of roughly $800 per patient.
Horizon patient Kim Eggert says, “Everyone has been impacted by the effects of COVID-19. The gift is a reminder that we will get through this together. Horizon has always been there providing exceptional care for the small rural community members who don’t have access to larger healthcare facilities. Horizon always puts their patients first. This investment will help them continue to do that.”
Tracy Pardy, Executive Director of Horizon Health Foundation adds, “NorthWestern is keeping the power on. We’re keeping the power of accessible and affordable healthcare for our patients and together we’re caring for our rural communities” Tracy Pardy said. “The gift provides hope to know that people do care. Thank you, NorthWestern Energy, for partnering with us to help South Dakotans.”
Horizon Health Foundation has raised $19,000 dollars toward COVID-19 efforts, including the $10,000 gift. People wishing to help can visit Horizon Health Foundation’s website at https://horizonhealthfoundation.com/donate.