NVRH Celebrates 50 Years

ST. JOHNSBURY - Northern Vermont Regional Hospital has been serving the NEK for 50 years. This past Monday, they started their virtual year long celebration.

"The hospital and healthcare have changed so much over the years. There have been a lot of different phases along that journey to where we are today," NVRH CEO Shawn Tester Said.

NVRH first opened in 1972. Before the hospital was born, the NEK had 2 medical facilities. However, in the 60s, community members saw a brighter vision. One central location for all patients and healthcare needs. It started as a 100 bed facility and overtime the hospital became a critical access center with 25 beds. The regions first cat scanner was installed in 1977.

"We continue to have a world class radiology team here. The reason it's here is because of community support. And today, we continue to be committed to supporting our community," Tester said.

While NVRH's website, NVRH.org has a year long celebration, Tester is hopeful for a in person gathering in the near future.

"Covid has really put a damper on some of the in person plans we had originally envisioned for our 50th anniversary. But we're holding out hope that if things continue on the positive track that we can have a big in person celebration."

With the healthcare system changing, NVRH looks to expand their space. Some of these changes include out patient same day surgery joint replacements and a significant expansion to their emergency department. This means that folks who go in for replacements can go home on the same day as their surgery. More rooms will be added. Along with the quality of medical care for the community. This project is planned to start in 2023 after the Vermont Green Mountain Care Board approves the certificate of need for the hospital.

"I am incredibly grateful to be here during this significant milestone in the history of NVRH. I'm confident that through the support of the community and everybody's hard work here at the hospital, that this institution will be here for my grand kids and their kids as well," Tester said.