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Giving Goes Full Circle

Wednesday, Nov 02, 2016
Steve Hirt, Donor Story

Steve Hirt spent his career raising funds for charitable, non-profit organizations. Today, as a grateful Doylestown Health patient, volunteer, and leader, the tables have turned— and he is the one proudly giving back.

Steve Hirt's introduction to Doylestown Health was in 1973, when his firm was hired to generate financial support for Doylestown Hospital's move from downtown Doylestown to its current location. After decades as a consultant advising leaders in business, government, healthcare, and social service organizations, his respect for Doylestown Health is evident. "I've had the chance to work with 30 different hospitals and would not trade any of them for my experiences with Doylestown Health," he said.

Doylestown Hospital's culture and community commitment impressed Steve early on. Among many highlights, "The governing influence of the Village Improvement Association of Doylestown (VIA) makes the difference. It drives both the tenor of patient care and Doylestown Health's commitment to providing exceptional service to the community."

A Patient's Perspective

In 2001, just a year after working to raise funds for the newly opened Heart Center, Hirt's relationship with the hospital became very personal when he required bypass surgery to clear six blockages. An avid runner, Hirt had always exercised and ate a healthy diet. "My mistake," he laughs, "was in picking the wrong parents. Heart disease runs in my family and it finally caught up with me." Since then, he's had an additional two heart catheterizations and a stent procedure. "My experiences with the Heart Institute have been excellent," he notes. "I feel blessed and fortunate to be here."

Connecting from the Heart

For 14 years Hirt has served in the Heart Institute's Heart-to-Heart program, a volunteer group of men and women who have undergone open heart surgery or who have a spouse who has. According to Steven Guidera, MD, a Heart Institute interventional cardiologist, "Steve Hirt is a prime example of why we provide unparalleled care to the people of our community. He generously gives of his time and considerable talents to help patients facing cardiac surgery and their families be more comfortable with the healing process. The personal touch that volunteers like Steve provide truly makes Doylestown Hospital a special place."

Hirt would agree. "The value we bring is sharing our experience," he says. "We help patients see life beyond a heart procedure, and alleviate the anxiety they feel about what's ahead. Volunteering keeps you in touch, keeps you grounded and continually makes you grateful for what you've received."

Investing in the Future

Steve and his wife, Carol, were donors well before his heart surgery. "We understand the value of quality healthcare," he notes. "I have total faith and confidence in how this institution uses money, both earned and charitably contributed. It's a matter of careful management and the partnership of the VIA. They're not afraid to ask the hard questions about necessity, affordability and the best interests of the community."

Furthermore, Hirt's role as a volunteer continues to evolve. After 16 years of service as a member of the hospital's Board of Directors, he now serves on the advisory board of Doylestown Health's Pine Run Retirement Community. "I plan to stay involved until I can't," he says. "From a retirement standpoint, we plan to move to Pine Run. I would be extremely reluctant to pick up and move out of this community. I have such respect for the quality of healthcare delivered here. I want to always be within that service area."

To make a contribution, please donate online or call the Doylestown Health Foundation at 215-345-2802. Thank you!

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About Doylestown Health Foundation

As the philanthropic arm of Doylestown Health, Doylestown Health Foundation raises funds to safeguard the future of excellence in patient care and improves the quality of life for all members of the community. Now, in the public phase of an ambitious $75 million comprehensive campaign, Doylestown Health is beginning a bold new chapter as it approaches its second century of healthcare delivery. Philanthropic support of ONE VISION: The Campaign for Doylestown Health will fund transformational renovation and expansion across the Doylestown Hospital and Pine Run campuses and will help chart the course for the next generation of patients, providers, and technology.

For more information, visit the Doylestown Health Foundation website or call 215-345-2009.      

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