2016: From cutting-edge research to a place no one expects

The power of community makes our world a better place. It takes many forms, and its impact can be tremendous.

For 85 years, Carle has stayed true to its core purpose of providing care to all who need it. Carle provided $140.7 million in services, donations and support to our community in 2015, which includes $30.6 million in free or discounted care to nearly 34,000 patients, many of whom we treated on several occasions. We welcome you to review and share:

Our community benefits from the generosity of so many. Here’s just a sampling from 2016.

Gift pushes advanced medical research from vision to reality

Focused on the future, community leaders Jeanene and Rick Stephens provided the lead gift for the $35 million campaign that will transform and elevate healthcare for the nearly 1.5 million people in our area.

Their gift establishes the Stephens Family Clinical Research Institute. The institute will complement Carle Illinois College of Medicine’s efforts to lead the charge on medical innovation.

Using a “bench-to-bedside approach,” the Stephens Family Clinical Research Institute will focus on research that impacts patients quickly and effectively.

Put simply, “patients will benefit from both the exceptional care Carle already provides and the breakthroughs from new research,” Jeanene Stephens said.

Holly's story: Financial assistance busts up barriers on path to health

Holly Lober’s positivity is contagious. She plans to continue to spread it around as part of her appreciation for the financial support that helped her and husband Arnie manage their chronic health problems.

“2016 was not the easiest year for us. Arnie had major eye surgery, and I now am dealing with added health issues,” she said. “Not once did our doctors, nurses, support staff or anyone else make us feel insignificant.

“Will there be bumps in the road? Of course. The humanity in our care from Carle is making those just bumps and not chasms.”

For the couple, positivity and contentment are choices.

“In 2017, we plan to simply enjoy each and every day and look forward to what the day will bring. Neither Arnie nor I is into worrying about tomorrow,” she said.

“We prefer to continue to stay positive and meet each new challenge head on.”

Camp supports parents who’ve lost loved ones, too

Expanding Camp Healing Heart to parents and caregivers provided added support for people in our communities coping with some of life’s most difficult times.

Look for that important adult component to continue in 2017.

“We spend a lot of camp encouraging kiddos to talk to their loved ones about their loss, but we wanted to give parents tools to be able to have those conversations at home,” said Brynn Howard, MSW, LCSW, a Carle Home Services social worker.

Camp Healing Heart is funded through Carle Center for Philanthropy.

Lifesaving support helps fight heroin, painkiller addiction

Making progress to stem a national epidemic requires community partnerships today and into the future.

Carle continues to provide Narcan training to police, fire department and emergency medical services (EMS) in our area. The training arms first responders with the knowledge needed to administer medication that can reverse an in-progress opioid overdose.

To support the family and friends of overdose patients, Carle now distributes prepackaged intranasal Narcan with layperson instructions when the patient is discharged.

Partnering with other healthcare providers like McKinley Health Center, law enforcement, the courts, advocacy and support groups, and more can makes a tremendous impact on one person, one family, one community struggling with opioid addiction.