Nourishing a Mission – Carris Health Redwood Foundation

Published in Wellness

Redwood Area Hospital strives each day to provide exceptional health care for our community.  That goal can only be accomplished through a collaboration of dedicated people and the right tools to do their jobs. Sometimes a piece of equipment or expanded service may be “off the radar” of the budget cycle, and that’s when Redwood Area Hospital Foundation jumps in to help.

The Foundation, formed in 2001 and directed by Karen Melges, provides opportunity for charitable giving that are used to enhance patient care through expanded services, upgraded equipment, professional health care education, and community health.

“People don’t realize what a gem of a hospital we have and the advantage of not having to travel great distances for health care,” says Blair Anderson, currently serving his second term as foundation chair. “When people are sick they are at their most vulnerable and the hospital has the staff to provide the care that is needed. It is so important to provide high-quality care close to home.”

In recent years the foundation gifts have supported quality care through a variety of means, from new laboratory equipment for faster and more accurate results, to ceiling lifts in patient rooms to ease transportation of patients, to sleeping chairs for visiting family of patients and treatment chairs for the Cancer Care Center.

“The Hospital Foundation is not just focused on bringing in money, but in being proactive and intentional to financially support and build our area hospital,” Anderson says. “The foundation has a responsibility to support exceptional health care in our community and we take the stewardship of this responsibility seriously.”

The foundation is a non-profit, tax-exempt corporation and a part of the Redwood Area Communities Foundation. Donations can be made using the enclosed envelope or online at  For other ways to support the Redwood Area Hospital Foundation, contact foundation director, Karen Melges, at 507-637-4668.

Gifts to the Redwood Area Hospital Foundation have supported the following projects:

  • Patient-Controlled Analgesia (PCA) pumps
  • Hospice van
  • Update audio/visual equipment in hospital education room
  • Ceiling lifts in patient room
  • Blood-gas analyzer in the hospital lab
  • Multi-channel chemistry analyzer for the hospital lab
  • Sleeping chairs for visiting family of patients
  • Student Athlete Concussion Management program
  • Artwork from local artist purchased for the hospital’s public areas
  • Digital mammography machine for joint venture with ACMC
  • Sponsor of University on the Prairie program promoting healthcare careers to area students
  • Automated pharmacy dispensing system
  • Airpal transfer mattress and pump system
  • Continuing education for hospital employees
  • Treatment chairs for the hospital Cancer Care Center
  • Health career exploration books for local schools
  • Furnishings for remodeled patient rooms
  • Defibrillator for Redwood Falls police vehicle and CPR training classes
  • Bone Builders exercise programs
  • Hats for hospital cancer patients
  • CPR training kits for local schools
  • Speakers for the Redwood Falls Senior Expo
  • Tuition assistance for young diabetes patients to attend Camp Needlepoint
  • Teleradiology equipment
  • High school scholarships for students pursuing a healthcare career