November 20, 2023, MORRIS, IL – Morris Hospital & Healthcare Centers is celebrating the 25 year anniversary of its patient transportation service. Launched in November 1998, the service offers patients free rides to the Morris Hospital main campus and physician offices. To date, 313,000 rides have been provided to healthcare appointments over the past 25 years.

Beginning with only one conversion van and four riders the first month of operation, the patient transportation service has grown to include eight buses and two mini vans that together complete an average of 600 trips each month. This growth was possible thanks to generous donations made to the Morris Hospital Auxiliary and Foundation over the past 25 years.

Morris Hospital Patient Transportation Manager Tina Carter has been with the service since 1999 and says the growth over 25 years has been remarkable. “Throughout the past 25 years, we have grown with more vehicles, more riders, and more volunteers,” says Carter.  “Today, we are able to serve so many more riders all throughout the area, many who tell us that they wouldn’t have a way to get to their medical appointment if it weren’t for our patient transportation service.”

Along with providing hundreds of thousands of rides over the past 25 years, Carter is especially proud that some of the original volunteers from 1998 are still volunteering today, expressing thanks to Ray Lisy, Bill Akre, Larry Mitchell, and Ron Ragan for their dedicated volunteer service with the service over the past 25 years.

When asked why he has continued to volunteer with patient transportation all these years, Mitchell says it is the combination of helping others in the community and being alongside fellow volunteers. “Volunteering has given me the opportunity to meet people I wouldn’t have met otherwise, and those people have turned into a second family to me,” says Mitchell.

Morris Hospital wishes to thank all the volunteers who have made the patient transportation service possible over the past 25 years. For more information on volunteering, call 815-705-7250.

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