PMH Board Approves Application For Rural Health Grant

Marlinton, WV – Seeking to take advantage of grant funding available to rural health institutions, Interim CEO Barbara Lay presented a proposal to the Pocahontas Memorial Hospital Board of Trustees at their meeting last week. She’d like to apply for a grant from the Rural Health Systems Program.

“They have two programs, one is for crisis and one is for collaborative” says Lay “and the collaborative grants are due by January 7th. I would like board permission to submit a collaborative application with Minnie Hamilton and maybe some other people to put together some board [of trustees] education, [and] supervisors workshop. So I’d like board permission to submit a $50,000.00 grant application to the Rural Health Systems Program.”

Lay says the money could also be used to improve real time communications with other health institutions. She says the grant does have a matching requirement, but that doesn’t mean the hospital has to pay money up front. She says they can do an in kind match.

“We can use the value of your time’s for attending, we can use the value of our supervisors time for attending; it’s a one to one match.”

A motion authorizing the application was approved. In other business, Lay also discussed updates to the hospitals website. She says it’s still a work in progress. She says they are also adding a secure area to the site where board members and staff will be able to access information, such as the employee handbook, or updates, via a password. It will also include information about various programs offered by the hospital. You can find the site at

One of programs featured on the site is the Swing Bed program. This allows patients to have an extended stay in the hospital while receiving physical and occupational therapy. It’s designed to help patients become more self-dependent. Lay says the number of swing beds has been increasing, bringing a much needed source of income to PMH, and it brings patients closer to home and family.

Lay also talked about a meeting she held with hospital supervisors. She says they’ve been busy getting their staff ready for what is usually one of the busier times of the year for hospital, thanks to Snowshoe’s ski season opening. She says she heard a lot of positive comments.

“Lisa talked about the Nursing department is working hard” says Lay. “It’s really nice that she’s starting to hear laughter from Nurses and when they’re in working with patients. We even have physician involvement, which is really good. It’s good to see the physicians becoming engaged; and all the support from the departments, everybody willing to help. Sometimes now you don’t even need to ask for help; people can see that you’re struggling or you need help and coming up [to help].”

The Board also approved a $50.00 membership with the Pocahontas County Chamber of Commerce. Stephanie Alexander, Director of Nursing at PMH will follow up with the Chamber.

The next meeting of the Pocahontas Memorial Hospital Board of Trustees will be January 27th.

Story By

Heather Niday

Heather is our Program Director and Traffic Manager. She started with Allegheny Mountain Radio as a volunteer deejay. She then joined the AMR staff in February of 2007. Heather grew up in the Richmond, Virginia, area and now lives in Arbovale, West Virginia with her husband Chuck. Heather is a wonderful flute player, and choir director for Arbovale UMC. You can hear Heather along with Chuck on Tuesday nights from 6 to 8pm as they host two hours of jazz on Something Different.

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