News & Events

Hospital & Nurses Week - History

     

In the month of May, Nurse’s Week and Hospital Week are celebrated across the country. This year marks the 96th year since two nurses started the first hospital in Chase County, the 90th year since the first formal hospital in Chase County, the 44th year since the opening of the current Chase County Community Hospital, and the 19th year since the addition of the Chase County Community Hospital clinic.

The first hospital in Chase County was started by two registered nurses. Elva and Evea Yaw were twin daughters of Milton and Mary Yaw of the Champion area. They graduated from the Methodist Hospital in Omaha in 1924. The two sisters bought hospital beds, linens, and dishes, and purchased a house at 619 Park in Imperial in August of 1925. Dr. George Hoffmeister moved his operating table and surgical instruments to a room in their home. The home hospital became so busy, they built on another room behind the kitchen for more operating space. Many patients were cared for in this simple, home hospital. The hospital eventually closed in the fall of 1929.

In the spring of 1931, the Imperial County Hospital located at 9th and Douglas Streets opened its doors to serve the public. An addition was added in 1958. The hospital was successful for 26 years. The ownership of the Imperial County Hospital was transferred to Chase County in order to receive federal assistance funds through the Hill-Burton Act. The old hospital building was demolished in February, 2002.

A groundbreaking ceremony was held in March of 1976 for the current hospital building located at 600 West 12th Street. Construction on the medical-dental complex on the southeast corner of the hospital property began in July of 1986. This site would become the medical practice of Dr. Doug Faibairn, Dr. Rick Jackson and a dental clinic for Dr. Gary Bjerrum. The Board of Directors began seeking bids for a new medical clinic in October of 2000. This clinic would be attached to the current hospital on the east side of the building. Chase County Clinic opened its doors for business on February 12, 2002. Heather Schoenholz was the clinic’s first Licensed Practical Nurse and continues to practice nursing presently as the Clinic Nursing Staff Coordinator.

In the last year, the hospital and clinic staff faced a number of overwhelming obstacles which affected the nation. Accomplishments over the last year include, but are not limited to:

• Adoption of a new mission, vision and values to better reflect care being provided to the community

• ER upgrades with the addition of e-Avera for better expedited care

• New isolation wing for better infection control

• Over 1,000 COVID vaccines given for community protection

• Heart Awareness Month with community outreach

• Fall Prevention Month with community outreach

• Child Abuse Prevention Awareness for community education

• Prostate Cancer Month Awareness for community education

• Community screening through Lab for community public health

• 1 of 3 clinics in the state of Nebraska to receive the Clinic Champion Certification for Infant Safe Sleep and Abusive Head Trauma/Shaken Baby Syndrome (AHT/SBS)

• Continue to remain Trauma certified with the state of Nebraska

 

Works Cited

Colton, C. (2021, April 28). (A. Ridlen, Interviewer)

Imperial Republican. (n.d.). Newspaper Clippings. 1976-2020.

Scrapbooks provided by Mr. C. Colton from the Champion Museum