By Sterling McGinn

Michigan Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist II toured the Helen Newberry Joy Hospital and Health Care Center on Tuesday, July 25 after the State of Michigan secured $7.3 million for the hospital in the 2023-2024 fiscal year budget.

The funds will be used for capital improvements to enhance and update the hospital and allow for expansion of a number of their services.

“We are really proud to partner with this facility,” Gilchrist said. “This legislature, the governor, and I prioritize rural health; we prioritize reducing health disparities and having better health outcomes for everyone in Michigan.”

Hospital CEO Hunter Nostrant, staff, and board members led a tour showing Gilchrist the areas needing upgrades. He also met doctors, nurses and other staff members talking with them about the difference the funds will make in upgrading areas with the facility.

Conversations with hospital staff had a common factor: improving patient experiences. “Whether it is for patients to be more comfortable in their exam rooms or more comfortable in their rooms when recovering,” Gilchrist said.

“I saw it before, but I can’t wait to see the ‘after’ and what it is going to mean for patient outcomes and for patient experiences in this community of Newberry and also the region.”

Funds from the budget allotment will arrive as soon as possible. “This facility is doing important work, but to see the next level it is going to be taken to, I am very hopeful that we can do it and it can happen efficiently,” Gilchrist said.