(Springfield, GA) October 16, 2016 — Effingham Health System (EHS) has kicked off its Golden Jubilee year with a Birthday Party celebrating its history and ongoing transformation. EHS will be hosting a series of events leading up to the 50th birthday of the hospital, which opened on August 25th, 1969. That was the same summer as Woodstock and Neil Armstrong’s walk on the moon, when the Chevrolet Camaro was the hottest car on the block, and the top billboard song was “Sugar, Sugar” by the Archies.
In 1969, Effingham County had just over 13,000 residents. Today Effingham has almost 60,000 residents. “Today’s Effingham Health System embodies the vision of local leaders in 1969,” explains Patricia Ann Yarbrough, Chairman of the Effingham Hospital Authority. “They saw that the growth and wellbeing of the county would depend on the availability of local healthcare—close to home.”
One special guest at the celebration event, Representative Bill Hutchins, was a Georgia State Patrol officer, managing traffic at the hospital’s Grand Opening in 1969. He spoke about the importance of having the hospital for emergencies during his years as a state trooper, and how he credits the hospital for saving his son’s life when he was a child. His son went on to be an active member of the community and is now a state trooper himself.
“This event is one of many over the next year that will celebrate the history of this hospital, the vision of people in this community, and Effingham Health System’s ongoing transformational journey,” shares Fran Baker-Witt, CEO for EHS.
Mrs. Baker-Witt invites the entire community to Effingham Health System’s Homecoming Block Party & Health Fair, November 3rd, 10am-2pm. The free event will be held outdoors at the EHS Educational Complex, 701 West First Street in Springfield. It will be a chance for local people to talk with the Effingham Health System staff and providers. This major EHS Jubilee public event will include live music from the past five decades, free food and drinks, health screenings and information, first responders for the kids, tours of the LiveStar helicopter, a mobile da Vinci Robot, special guests, games and fun—plus Zumba, Tai-chi, and Yoga demonstrations from the YMCA.
When the hospital opened it had 75 employees. Today Effingham Health System employs over 400 people. Modernization over the years has greatly increased the size and scope of the facility.
In 2018 Effingham Health System is the only CMS four-star rated hospital in the Greater Savannah area, with a CMS five-star rated Care Center, and was voted Best of the Best Hospital in the Coastal Empire.
Recent growth for the system includes:
• An ER that treats 18,000 patients a year
• A Cancer Care Center
• Partnerships with physician groups that bring specialty care to Effingham
• An on-staff Pediatrician
• School-based Telemedicine
• And da Vinci Robotic Surgery