20 years ago …Hannibal Regional Hospital opened the doors to its new state of the art facility. 

The hospital celebrated  the milestone Wednesday afternoon with a reception in the mall area. The crowd of well-wishers heard speakers including Hannibal Regional Healthcare CEO Todd Ahrens and President Lynn Olson talk about the historical move into a new facility, and the vision for the future.

Hannibal Regional Hospital President Lynn Olson says the decision to build the facility west of town-- in what was a corn field near Highway 36-- was not without controversy …

When you look at the original vision, it was controversial.  Two organizations had come together as one, bringing different philosophies and medical staff together on one campus, and at that time, it (the new facility) was quite far from the downtown.  But the vision was--we can be stronger together.


Olson says the growth of both the hospital and the surrounding medical community is noteworthy.

Did the growth surprise us??  I think what's grown up around us is pretty impressive:  the Cancer Center, Children's Center, Hannibal Clinic, the Hannibal Regional Medical Group that opened about 4 years ago...I would say the growth has been a pleasant surprise.

Olson says universal healthcare was a hot button issue in 1993, when the Clinton administration unsuccessfully proposed their plan. Now 20 years later, Obamacare is expected to change many aspects of healthcare in America.  Olson says he is optimistic Hannibal Regional will adapt to whatever changes the Affordable Care Act brings.

Ollson says technology continues to evolve and change the way healthcare is delivered:   just recently the hospital adopted a paperless record system for patients.

The Hannibal Regional Healthcare system employs nearly 900 people.