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Story of Impact: St. Vincent Hospital Foundation


In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, we wanted to spotlight one organization that has recently purchased a digital mammography machine to provide higher quality care for the women in the Lake County community.

Nestled 10,152 feet above sea level, St. Vincent Hospital is a 25 bed Critical Access Hospital in Leadville, Colorado. The hospital’s mission is to provide the best possible, cost-effective, accessible care that balances community needs and available resources.

St. Vincent Hospital has a rich tradition, dating back over 125 years, when nuns from the Sister of Charity- Kansas came to Leadville in 1879. Responding to Leadville’s desperate need for a hospital, the nuns created St. Vincent. Over the years, St. Vincent evolved to meet the ever growing and changing needs of the region. Currently, the hospital offers home health, physical therapy, and acute care. Similar to the Sisters of Charity, St. Vincent remains committed to meeting the ever changing healthcare needs in the region far into the future.

In August of 2013, El Pomar Foundation granted a $25,000 capital grant to St. Vincent to fund a portion of the purchase of a refurbished digital mammography machine. The new machine replaced an 18 year old machine that produced low quality images. Moreover, with the old machine the turnaround time for receiving results was lengthy. If results returned inconclusive, women would have to travel over numerous mountain passes to get a second mammogram at a higher quality digital machine. St. Vincent’s new machine produces high quality images, and women and their doctors receive results more quickly. As a result, physical referrals appointments have increased in the past year, and growth is expected to continue as more women (and men) seek out these services.


Joyce Beck, CEO and Karen Rinehart, Foundation Director (left to right) with the mammography machine