M. Hellen Rodriguez, MD
As a longtime physician, I'm always an optimist: I strive each day
to leave my patients stronger and healthier than they were when they first
came to me with a medical need.
As chairwoman of the Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center Foundation
board of directors, I bring that same sense of optimism to the table,
doing all that I can to help make the hospital an even better one than
it already is. It's a challenging goal and one that will require assistance
from a supportive community that has long embraced the mission and ideals
of this great facility.
I first joined the PVHMC medical staff in 1987, and since then have witnessed
or participated in many of the hospital's greatest achievements. I've
seen the Stead Heart and Vascular Center, built with community support
the year before I arrived, take root and grow. I've watched the Women’s
Center, where I work each day, emerge from a mound of dirt into a burgeoning
center of excellence. I've witnessed The Robert & Beverly Lewis
Family Cancer Care Center become a center of hope for those suffering
with various forms of cancer.
On a different level, PVHMC is also a STEMI receiving center for patients
who have suffered a heart attack, a certified Stroke Center for Los Angeles
County, one of 50 top cardiac hospitals in the U.S. so designated by Thomson
Reuters, and our Emergency Department was recently named among the top
5% in the nation by Healthgrades. Clearly, PVHMC is among the finest hospitals
in Southern California.
As each of these clinical programs grew and developed, philanthropy played
a key role. Without generous support from those who utilize this hospital,
our growth in key clinical areas would not have been possible. The fact
is that in most instances, not-for-profit community hospitals simply cannot
fund all of their capital needs without generous giving. PVHMC is no exception.
That reality is truer today than it was a few years ago. In recent years
our economy has faltered, and along with it many of the constants we took
for granted—jobs, income, community services—have shrunk or
disappeared altogether. Another constant, however, is our health. No matter
what is happening in the world around us, people always need effective
healthcare. When illness strikes, it's comforting to know that a great
hospital with fine facilities, expert clinicians and the latest technology
is nearby—staffed and equipped to make a difference.
With the world changing, it is widely accepted that the only communities
that will enjoy continued access to high-quality health care in the future
will be those that provide significant philanthropic and volunteer support
to the not-for-profit hospitals they rely on. Pomona Valley Hospital Medical
Center is facing that challenge with hope and determination.
I know that from firsthand experience. I've supported the hospital
for many years, I've served as president of the medical staff, I've
served on the Foundation board of directors, and I've chaired committees.
Through my own involvement I've seen what tireless devotion and generous
giving offered by dedicated supporters can do to strengthen an already
vigorous medical center.
As I look ahead to the coming years, I'm reminded of the PVHMC Foundation's
overriding mission: through every philanthropic gift we receive, Pomona
Valley Hospital Medical Center is able to make an impact in the lives
of our patients!
That's our goal in its purest form. Each gift, from a large endowment
of property or assets to a smaller gift of cash, is ultimately used to
improve the lives of those we treat. What a joy it is to financially support
a hospital, then to watch it provide outstanding care to a family member
or friend in their time of need.
Going forward, some view the coming year with a sense of trepidation.
However, I look at it with a sense of optimism. Your hospital—and
it truly is your hospital—is only getting better. We're situated
in a generous community with a long history of selfless giving. We share
a world where we often intersect only at a point of need. With your support,
lets make that point of need a place where hope and collaboration also
come together. Join hands to partner with us as we embark upon the exciting
challenge of making Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center one of the finest