Great care can change a life. Sometimes it can change millions of lives. In 1947, Richard E. Alt, MD, home from World War II Medical Corps duty, was working at Beverly Hospital when Evelyn Lilly Roberts was rushed in after a fall from her horse. Following Alt’s care, Evelyn made a full recovery and her father, pharmaceutical magnate Eli Lilly, wanted to show his appreciation. With Alt’s help, he established the Beverly Hospital Research Association—now the Evelyn Lilly Lutz Foundation.
Since that day, the Lutz Foundation has partnered with Beverly Hospital to advance scientific development and improve patient care. With its latest gift of $465,000, the foundation further strengthens this legacy. “Over the years, the hospital has leveraged our support to promote medical research, capital improvements, and continuing education,” says Lutz Foundation President Suzanne Graves, MD. “Today we are proud to continue supporting Beverly’s areas of greatest need.”
The COVID-19 pandemic reiterated the vital role of nurses and the importance of respiratory therapists—their efforts were essential. “In conditions fraught with uncertainty and unprecedented daily challenges, care providers stepped up,” said the late Tony Feeherry, former Lutz foundation board member and Beverly Hospital Philanthropy Committee member. “Their selflessness, courage, and perseverance carried us through the storm. However, their efforts did not come without a toll.”
One of the effects of the pandemic has been high burnout rates among nurses and respiratory therapists. A new challenge the hospitals are facing is finding—and keeping—the caliber of professionals patients require and deserve. While the hospital has taken many steps toward this endeavor, support from the Lutz Foundation grants will establish two key programs that will help us make even greater strides in supporting staff.
First is a student loan forgiveness program offered to high-performing nurses who have been with the hospital at least two years and have shown extraordinary commitment to the institution. This will offer much-needed support to nurses and demonstrate great appreciation, while helping to promote retention and career longevity. Additionally, an innovative collaboration with regional colleges will offer scholarships to exemplary respiratory therapy students who commit to practicing at Beverly Hospital. The goal is to create a pipeline of the best and brightest staff to fill these important positions.
“The impact of this gift will be felt immediately, and the success it brings will be felt for years to come as we are able to attract new providers while supporting our remarkable team,” says Beverly Hospital Chief Nursing Officer Kim Perryman, MMHC, RN. “We are beyond grateful for their partnership.” Adds Graves: “By advancing recruitment and retention strategies, the hospital will be able to continue providing what the Lutz Foundation was founded on—great care for patients.”