Morongo Gives Record $5.6 Million to San Gorgonio Memorial Hospital Foundation to Expand Stroke Program

BANNING, CALIF (March 16, 2022)  – The Morongo Band of Mission Indians presented a record $5.6 million donation to the San Gorgonio Memorial Hospital Foundation on Wednesday, March 16 to purchase new equipment and build new facilities that will allow the hospital to become the first certified stroke center in the San Gorgonio Pass.

The donation, which is the largest ever received by the Foundation, will pay for new equipment that is critical for treating acute stroke patients, including two computerized tomography (CT) scanners that allow doctors to diagnose and monitor patient conditions, a new magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) machine capable of producing exceptional imagery (at 1.5T), and an entirely new building for the MRI equipment.

The Foundation will also use the funds to purchase a new gamma camera and upgrade the stroke facility’s digital radiography rooms and older pieces of equipment.

“This extremely generous gift from the Morongo Band of Mission Indians will save lives all across our Pass communities for many, many years to come,” said Foundation President Randy Robbins. “Morongo’s donation will bring immediate, life-saving benefits to the residents of the Pass and is an amazing milestone for marking the 40th anniversary of our Foundation.”

Morongo Tribal Chairman Charles Martin

Morongo Tribal Chairman Charles Martin praised the San Gorgonio Memorial Hospital staff, leadership and Foundation for their unwavering dedication to serving others in need, especially over the past two years during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Your commitment, compassion, and professionalism are nothing short of amazing. Morongo has enjoyed a close relationship with the Foundation and the hospital for decades, and our Tribe is grateful to build upon that partnership to advance the health and wellness of our growing Pass communities,” Martin said.

The funds will strengthen the hospital’s Stroke Program through the purchase and installation of an Emergency Department CT Scanner with Brain Perfusion; a secondary CT Scanner with Cardiac package; rooms to house the new units, as well as a new MRI unit and building.

The new equipment and capabilities will enable San Gorgonio Memorial Hospital to become a Certified Stroke Center, meaning stroke patients in the Pass can receive care faster and will no longer need to be automatically transported to stroke centers outside of the area.

“We are deeply grateful for Morongo’s support, which will allow us to purchase new equipment that is essential for strengthening patient care,” said San Gorgonio Memorial Hospital Chief Medical Officer Dr. Karan P. Singh. “When it comes to strokes, every minute counts. Morongo’s gift puts us in a much better position to save lives and reduce long-term impacts to stroke patients by providing them immediate care.”

San Gorgonio Memorial Hospital Board Chair Susan DiBiasi also thanked the Tribe for the donation on behalf of the board, saying “Thanks to Morongo, the future is bright at the San Gorgonio Memorial Hospital.” The $5.6 million donation to the Foundation aligns with Morongo’s ongoing commitment to improve the quality of life and well-being of communities across Riverside and San Bernardino counties. Over the past decade, Morongo has given over $15 million to support local and regional nonprofit organizations that help seniors, families, veterans, youth and those in need.