■ BY SUE ERWIN
The year 2017 was a time of achievements for the Boca Grande Health Clinic.
Three new board members were elected at the Boca Grande Health Clinic’s annual meeting held on April 12.
Tom Bowers, Dr. Holly Cowan and Honey Skinner will serve three-year tours on the Clinic’s board.
Boca Grande Health Clinic CEO Hilja Bilodeau said the state of the Clinic is very strong.
“Our visit volume is steady, and we’ve had an increase of patients over the last two years,” Bilodeau said. “Many nights during the busy season the doctors and staff stayed until 7 p.m. to ensure all patients were seen.”
The mission of the Boca Grande Health Clinic is to meet the primary healthcare needs of the residents, visitors and workers in the Gasparilla Island community.
“Part of our mission is that a doctor is always available on call 24 hours a day,” Bilodeau said. “Because of our on-island medical facility and the superb medical staff provided by the Clinic, those us who spend extended time here can take comfort in having quickly available, quality care.”
Former board member Will Farish gave an update on the state of the Foundation.
Dr. Raymond James was the guest speaker. He talked about warning signs of stroke and heart attack and how the symptoms differ for women and men. He spoke about how to understand the symptoms and when to call EMS for help.
Dr. Daly Walker will be the new Foundation chair. Mary Ann Van Lokeren is the vice chair.
One major achievement of the Clinic last year was receiving recertification by the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC), a national best-practices organization providing standards to advance and promote patient safety and quality care through peer-based accreditation processes, education and research.
“That was one of our significant achievements of the year,” Bilodeau said. “The other was we survived Hurricane Irma.”
The Clinic currently has three doctors: Dr. Thomas Ervin, Dr. Lauren Hana and, as of March 1, Dr. Raymond James.
A 70th anniversary celebration was held outside the Clinic and annex buildings on April 11. The community was invited to come and enjoy hors d’oeuvres and beverages while meeting the Clinic staff.
For more information, visit bghc.org.