Bozeman Health Foundation Caring Forward Campaign

Big Sky Medical Center

Since opening to the public in December 2015, Big Sky Medical Center has seen a steady number of patient visits from Big Sky and surrounding communities. Our clinic now serves an average of 23 patients per day, and hospital services range from MRI and radiology to emergency room procedures. “There is a growing need for healthcare for a growing number of people in this community,” Big Sky resident Robin Stephenson said.

The Campaign for a Healthier Community

  • Enhancing
    Critical & Intensive Care

    Building the new intensive care unit (ICU) focused on critical care for our growing population of adults and seniors and Southwest Montana’s first NICU for babies in vital need of specialized care that allows families to stay close to home.

  • Expanding
    Community Outreach

    Serving our communities’ vulnerable neighbors through mission-driven services and patient financial assistance. Additionally, Bozeman Health is expanding the services it offers to those in need of mental health and substance abuse related services in Bozeman, Big Sky and throughout our growing region.

  • Growing
    Big Sky Medical Center

    Helping accelerate the pace at which new specialties and healthcare services become available in Big Sky, in addition to enabling special equipment purchases and provide for emergency simulations and scenario-based training for BSMC employees.

Campaign Progress: Towards Our $15 Million Goal

$13.6 Million in Commitments
3.6M in Qualified Bequests

Campaign Progress: Priority Needs

$1.9M for the ICU
$1.1M for the NICU



Bozeman Health and the Big Sky community have been in partnership for over a decade. Bozeman Health had the foresight to anticipate the eventual need for a 24/7 medical center, so in 2007, it purchased land for a future hospital site in Town Center.

In December, 2015 that partnership produced Big Sky Medical Center, the first truly new hospital constructed in Montana in decades. The $27-million investment by Bozeman Health in the Big Sky community is considered a turning point for residents of southern Gallatin County. Big Sky Medical Center features:

  • A well-appointed 51,625 square-foot facility.
  • A 24-hour emergency department.
  • Four in-patient beds with room to expand to eight beds in the future.
  • A primary care clinic staffed with caring professionals.
  • A pharmacy, laboratory and imaging center, including MRI machine.


The opening of Big Sky Medical Center is already paying dividends for the rapidly growing communities of southern Gallatin County:

  • Trauma patients no longer have to endure an hour-long ambulance ride for evaluation and imaging.
  • Big Sky first responders are able to spend more time in the community rather than shuttling patients for emergency care.
  • Part-time residents are now more comfortable in deciding to make Big Sky their permanent home.
  • Big Sky families can now have the majority of their health care needs—from routine check-ups and laboratory work, to picking up prescriptions and emergency care—met in one location.


Bozeman Health knows that the Big Sky Medical Center represents not an end, but the beginning of a journey to top-notch healthcare for Big Sky and surrounding communities. The convergence of a rapidly growing population base, increased tourist visits and the speed of innovation in the healthcare field necessitates constant investment for the benefit of the community.

As healthcare continues to evolve with unprecedented speed, ongoing innovation is vital and Big Sky Medical Center’s doctors and administrators need to be empowered to grow and adapt in the name of great patient care. To address this need, the Big Sky Medical Center Fund for Excellence and Innovation has been established. This donor-supported fund will help in the following areas:

  • CARDIAC STRESS TESTING AND ECHOCARDIOGRAPHY. Exercise stress testing helps screen for coronary disease and evaluate chest pain. Echocardiography offers local follow up and facilitates the assessment of cardiac disease.
  • ENHANCING COLONOSCOPY AND EGD ACCESS, RESOURCES AND PRACTICES. Investing in advanced equipment and specialized training for Big Sky Medical Center staff enables high quality access to endoscopy services to the Big Sky patient community.
  • CONTINUAL STAFF DEVELOPMENT AND PROFESSIONAL TRAINING. As patient volume and complexity grows, front-line caregivers must remain at the forefront of their disciplines. Investments in training programs such as Simulation & Scenario training led by third-party experts and ATLAS (Advanced Trauma and Life Support) training will ensure that southern Gallatin County residents receive top-quality care well into the future.
  • TELEMEDICINE. With the advent of high-speed data transmission expanding the reach of our of services beyond the bricks and mortar of Bozeman Health is now a reality. Telemedicine offers a way for patients to communicate with our doctors and staff in real-time to help diagnose and treat illness miles from our facilities. Telemedicine also offers a discrete way for patients that may have suffered a stroke or are battling mental illness to receive treatment without the need for in-person visits. Bridging that divide is increasingly important in a vast state like Montana where patients may be miles from quality care.

The Fund for Excellence & Innovation will allow Big Sky Medical Center to acquire new leading-edge equipment, to have staff members trained in new techniques, and to more quickly provide new kinds of treatments to patients that might not otherwise be available in Big Sky.

Rising to the Challenge:Delivering Mental Health Services at Big Sky Medical Center

As leaders at Big Sky Medical Center, we hear it in nearly every conversation we have in the community: “What are we going to do – together – to address the growing mental health challenges we face in Big Sky?” Alongside those concerned, personal voices, we heard it too in our 2018 Community Health Needs Assessment, where a lack of behavioral health services was identified as South Gallatin County’s number one healthcare concern. While we cannot address these challenges alone, we believe Big Sky Medical Center must be at the heart of any serious community-wide solution for real progress to be made.

Building on important insights gained through Elevating Behavioral Health, an 18-month community collaboration that brought together a dozen leading organizations throughout our region to help understand and begin addressing growing challenges, Bozeman Health and Big Sky Medical Center are ready to expand the services they offer to those in need of mental health support. However, charitable support from individuals, corporations, and foundations will be essential as we design, implement, and sustain programs that are intended to have both immediate and long-term positive impacts. Equally important are the partners with whom we plan to work when implementing our bold plan, including Women in Action, Big Sky Community Organization and others.

Integrated Behavioral Health

Investing in Integrated Behavioral Health (IBH) helps to bring vital mental health screening and treatment services into primary care settings, identifying those at risk and quickly connecting them to the professional, compassionate support they need. We seek to implement IBH in BSMC’s primary care clinic, hiring a full time mental health counselor to work alongside our outstanding physicians and APCs. Pilot tested during 2017 and now being implemented in Bozeman Health’s internal medicine, pediatrics and women’s specialty clinics, our IBH and LAUNCH programs also train our front line caregivers to help ensure the greatest possible impact for our mental health counselors.

Tele-Psychiatry: Enhancing Emergency and Crisis Response

As Big Sky’s behavioral health needs continue to grow, enabling BSMC’s emergency department and inpatient hospital to better meet the needs of those who come to us in crisis must grow as well. New technologies have the power to play a vital role in improving patient access to care and supporting our dedicated physicians as they do their important work. A new partnership with a nationally renowned tele-health provider will allow our physicians and nurses in Big Sky 24/7 access to psychiatric resources that can help with diagnosis, stabilization, medication management and compassionate placement with partners best suited to meet longer-term behavioral health needs. Charitable funds received will cover the purchase of high-quality, secure telehealth equipment and provide for three years of 24/7 contracted coverage.

Reducing Stigma & Increasing Understanding

The stigma that continues to surround mental health impacts patients in need, standing as a barrier to their willingness to seek care. It impacts community members and even professional care team members who are often reluctant or unaware of how best to respond when they come into contact with those who may be in crisis. It impacts potential donors who, while often passionate about the need, remain hesitant to publicly offer their charitable support to this still challenging field of medicine. Bozeman Health and Big Sky Medical Center are committed to reducing this stigma and, at the same time, helping to reduce our state’s high suicide rates working in partnership with other community leaders and organizations, such as Women in Action and Big Sky Community Organization. Funds received will help to cover costs for suicide prevention programming, the development and implementation of mental health education programs and the design and deployment of customized, community focused communications campaigns.

We’re Ready, but There’s Much More to be Done…

“The work we’ve done through Elevating Behavioral Health, alongside amazing partners like YCCF, WIA, the City/County Health Department, MSU, Bozeman and Big Sky schools, the Help Center, and so many others, has really helped to understand what our communities need most and how leaders at Big Sky Medical Center can best make a difference for the future,” said Vickie. “Our region faces real and growing challenges in this arena, but we believe that our vision is the right one. With support from our donor community, we’re confident we can take big steps forward in addressing mental health needs and substance use disorders.”

Looking forward, we’re eager to continue active conversations with Big Sky Community Organization, WIA, and others. Working together, we can ensure that partners have access to our expert educational and clinical resources and that those who present at those partners’ facilities will have compassionate access to the care they need.


Providing a top-quality healthcare facility for the many families and visitors that live, work, and recreate in Big Sky is just the first step in the process. In order to meet future needs, expand the scope of services available locally and ensure that highly-trained personnel can serve Big Sky’s medical needs into the next several decades, philanthropy will play an essential role.

Donating to Big Sky Medical Center’s Fund for Excellence and Innovation is an investment in the future of Big Sky. The Big Sky spirit is about being forward-looking, forward-thinking and forward-investing. We invite you to catch the spirit and discuss this initiative with us in greater detail.

Join the Cause

Bozeman Health cares deeply for our neighbors in this special place we call home.
Please join us as we seek to provide the highest quality care across the communities we proudly serve.
Caring Forward: The Campaign for a Healthier Community.


Bozeman Health Foundation
931 Highland Blvd, Suite 3200
Bozeman, MT 59715
P: (406) 414-1085