MADISON, WV (WOWK) — For years, one of the biggest challenges in West Virginia has been getting adequate medical care to people in rural parts of the state.

On Monday, one health care organization took a big step to change that.

For many years, West Virginia has been one of the most unhealthy states in the nation, but what happened today is geared towards change.

Boone Memorial Hospital opened in 1964 and currently employs more than 450 people.

A crowd gathered outside of Boone Memorial Hospital Monday, as it changed its name to Boone Memorial Health.

Boone Memorial was already well known for pioneering efforts to treat black lung disease and substance abuse disorder. Now it will be setting up more satellite clinics, and doing more community outreach for health care treatment, education, and prevention.

“We’re working on broadband and those solutions, but they’re not quite there yet. And so while telehealth has a great future, we still need to focus on seeing the people today,” said Virgil Underwood, Boone Memorial Health CEO.

Boone Memorial Health has also set up the BMH Foundation for Community Health, and today it handed out more than $200,000 in awards for community projects that promote health.

“Rural health care is what my district is all about. And it’s so important to provide all of the opportunity for all of the people that live in Southern West Virginia,” said Rep. Carol. Miller, (R) West Virginia.