Essentia, Altru, Devils Lake & Spirit Lake look to improve rural healthcare
DEVILS LAKE, N.D. (Valley News Live) - Essentia Health, Altru Health System, the City of Devils Lake and Spirit Lake Nation signed a Letter of Intent (LOI) to explore the development of a new, state-of-the-art medical campus in Devils Lake.
The signing happened at Lake Region State College on Wednesday, October 19. In attendance were U.S. Senator Kevin Cramer, a representative from U.S. Senator John Hoeven’s office, Essentia CEO Dr. David Herman, Altru President Dr. Josh Deere, Devils Lake Mayor Jim Moe, and Spirit Lake Nation Chairman Doug Yankton.
Herman and Deere said Essentia and Altru both have a history of serving rural populations, and believe everyone deserves access to expert health care close to home. Adding, working alongside trusted and community-focused partners in the City of Devils Lake and Spirit Lake Nation is energizing.
“Collaborating on a transformational public-private partnership such as this, which will improve health outcomes throughout the Lake Region, is a terrific opportunity for us to advance our mission of making a healthy difference in people’s lives,” said Essentia West Market President Dr. Bill Heegaard.
“Altru is deeply committed to the Lake Region and to improving care for the residents we serve,” shared Altru CEO Todd Forkel. “This collaborative approach and a focus on high-quality, patient-first care is the right path forward for the future of health care in Devils Lake. We are proud to work alongside Essentia, the City of Devils Lake and Spirit Lake Nation to advance these efforts.”
The LOI signing is the first significant step in this process. Essentia, Altru, the City of Devils Lake and Spirit Lake Nation will now work together to define the scope of the project and how to best enhance access to sustainable, patient-centered, high-quality care for the area.
There is not yet a firm timeline for construction of the project, but those involved say they will seek public input and engage the community as plans move forward.
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