Others wonder how the sale will affect CCH’s community support. “Half the people in Chelsea are financial supporters of the hospital,” says Squiers, the former state police officer. He’s among them, but he says he may not donate as much now that it has the resources and fund-raising apparatus of Trinity.
Trinity aims to sustain CCH’s local connections with a new health foundation. Established with cash proceeds from the sale, the Health and Wellness Foundation for the Chelsea Community will take over ownership of the hospital’s Health & Wellness Center and its share of the Silver Maples Retirement Community. It will also support the hospital with fund-raising and other initiatives.
Griffiths says she knows some donors are skittish. “What’s really important for our local donors is that any money that is raised in Chelsea stays in Chelsea,” she says. She’s promising this will be the case. The big unknown is whether Chelsea will still feel the same sort of pride and connection with its local hospital once it’s owned by an out-of-town corporation.
[Originally published in January, 2009.]