Hospital program gets national award

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WASHINGTON – The American Hospital Association honored a Farmington hospital volunteer program with the Hospital Award for Volunteer Excellence.

The awards program is in its 23rd year and highlights the extraordinary efforts of volunteer programs and the positive impact their contributions have on the patients, hospitals, health systems and the communities they serve.

The In-Service Hospital Volunteer Program award went to Contract for Care, Franklin Community Health Network.

Contract for Care allows patients the opportunity to work off a bill that they cannot afford to pay. The voluntary program allows a patient or former patient to use his or her skills to contribute to the hospital and community through a range of available projects.

Contract for Care works to improve the confidence of patients who could not otherwise afford to pay their hospital bills, and makes a substantial contribution to the life and culture of the hospital and local community.

For example, one patient who made $2,000 quilts created a quilt for display in the hospital as part of her Contract for Care agreement. A self-employed auto body repairman fixed a hospital vehicle as payment toward his hospital bill.

Contract for Care helps increase the public’s understanding of the core mission of Franklin Community Health Network, which is to provide care to all, regardless of a patient’s ability to pay. Contract for Care replaces bill collecting with opportunity and dignity for the community it serves. More than 200 individuals have participated in Contract for Care.

Other recipients of the awards hail from Oregon, Illinois and Pennsylvania. Representatives from the programs received their awards at an award luncheon on April 30 in Washington. For more information, visit www.aha.org.

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