Hospitals boost our region

Their impact goes well beyond providing health care

Hospitals are a good example of institutions that are so vital a part of our immediate environment it is easy to take them for granted.

Having a first-rate medical center close at hand is essential to the quality of life. Here in Fort Dodge, UnityPoint Health — Trinity Regional Medical Center has become a major regional referral center for specialty care. That benefits not only those who call Fort Dodge or Webster County home, but also many others who live in the nearby counties.

The presence in this community of a superb medical facility also makes Fort Dodge more competitive as it seeks the economic growth that is so important to the future of the city and region. It’s no secret that one of the factors is of critical importance in corporate decision-making about site selection or expansion is the ready availability of comprehensive, top-quality health care. Fort Dodge does well that dimension, even when compared to much larger cities.

Consequently, it is no exaggeration to assert that Trinity’s excellence helps this town achieve its dreams for tomorrow. So too, however, does the presence of smaller hospitals throughout our region help other communities remain strong.

A recent survey by the Iowa Hospital Association documented that the Hawkeye State’s 118 community hospitals have an enormous economic impact. According the IHA, annually Iowa’s hospitals help generate more than 330,000 jobs. Their overall contribution to the state’s economy is estimated to be more than $7.1 billion a year.

UnityPoint Health — Fort Dodge generates about 1,159 jobs and adds more than $72 million to the local economy, according to the IHA study. The other community hospitals throughout our region also boost local economies.

There are many reasons to take pride in UnityPoint Health — Trinity Regional Medical Center and all the other hospitals in our region. It’s no exaggeration to assert that their success contributes mightily to the ability of the region to thrive. They are vital to the health of people who live in this part of the Hawkeye State and help the region prosper.