Charitable giving begins at home
Gary E. Tratt, MD, FACP
The Tratt family takes charitable giving to heart and it is a generational thread that continues through their grandchildren.
Gary Tratt, MD, an internal medicine physician in Hyannis, and his wife, Ellen, have been contributing to Cape Cod Hospital and now Cape Cod Healthcare for more than 42 years.
“I’ve had a wonderful career here. I love Cape Cod and I’ve raised my children here,” said Dr. Tratt. “I’m supporting Cape Cod Hospital because I feel that, morally, I should do that.”
The couple’s donations have supported the Emergency Center expansion, cancer services, ambulatory care center and equipment.
“I recognize that we have an excellent facility that almost totally fulfills every medical necessity,” he said. “It gives us quality care and allows us to have medical treatment for our illnesses without having to travel a hundred miles round-trip to Boston. I’ve had elective surgery at Cape Cod Hospital, myself, with excellent results.”
Insures A Future
Dr. Tratt comes from a family tradition of giving to charity.
“My father was active with the Masons and the Order of Knights of Pythias,” he said. “Both of my parents were very generous with their time and participated in all kinds of charitable events. They encouraged me by their example.”
The Tratts have passed along the tradition of giving to their children and grandchildren. Their two sons live in Washington with their families and give to local charities.
While holiday gift giving in the Tratt family may be a bit non-traditional, it is what encourages the grandchildren to think about others.
“We don’t give personal gifts,” said Dr. Tratt. “We promote charitable giving in our family by giving holiday cards containing a blank $10 check to each grandchild with instructions to give to a charity of their choice. We have six grandchildren ages 18, 16, 16, 13, 12 and 8 years old.”
One grandchild supports a foundation in Tanzania that pays for its youth to attend high school and college.
“Children in that country are only given up to a sixth- grade education,” said Dr. Tratt. Through the foundation, those who “have promise” can go on for further education.
Just as Dr. Tratt and his wife lead by example in their own family, they encourage others to be charitable givers as well, especially when it comes to Cape Cod Hospital.
“We shouldn’t have to explain what is so obvious,” added Dr. Tratt. “I feel that everyone who lives here should be supporting this institution because it is giving us quality care. Giving to the hospital is ensuring its future.”