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SCKMC Receives Anonymous Donation

November 13, 2015

South Central Kansas Medical Center was recently the recipient of a $20,000 donation provided by an area couple who wish to remain anonymous. The funds were donated to the hospital with the restriction that they be used towards debt service coverage for the replacement facility construction bonds.

Arkansas City, KS – South Central Kansas Medical Center was recently the recipient of a $20,000 donation provided by an area couple who wish to remain anonymous. The funds were donated to the hospital with the restriction that they be used towards debt service coverage for the replacement facility construction bonds.

“It’s wonderful that people want to support this hospital financially. Of course that is what we have struggled with at our hospital, trying to make sure we have enough cash set aside to pay for the bonds along with hospital operations. I think it’s a blessing for this hospital and the people employed here and I am very grateful that someone would think of us,” said SCKMC’s CFO Holly Harper.

The donation is one of the largest SCKMC has received since launching its “Building a Future of Excellence” financial campaign in the Fall of 2010. The campaign was originally created to seek gifts for capital equipment purposes as well as accepting funds to support programs.

 “I hope people will continue to think about the hospital when they are considering making donations. We are a government owned entity, owned by the City of Arkansas City, and therefore eligible to receive donations that are tax deductible to the donor,” Harper said.

 To date, donations have been made at all levels, ranging from support of the flower garden to the naming of various rooms and departments throughout the hospital. However, this has been the first donation to be used specifically for repayment of the multi-million dollar construction bond.

 “Our bond payments are in excess of one-million dollars every year, and this is something that certainly will help. I think it was a very generous gift and I appreciate it so much. We really thank them for their gift and we hope that other people will follow in their footsteps to help the hospital get on a sound financial foundation,” stated SCKMC Chief Executive Officer Virgil Watson.

Watson, who became CEO less than one year ago, has stated that improving the hospital’s finances is a top priority. SCKMC staff have been focused on seeking new ways to improve the hospital’s bottom line. New patient driven plans have been introduced such as the tele-hospitalist and 340B pharmacy programs, as well as reimbursement improvement programs such as applying for sole community hospital and rural health clinic statuses. 

 “We have been forced to become more proactive because of the challenges that are facing us. It’s not an option, it is an expectation that I have at this point in time of myself and all of our staff, to always be looking for opportunities to improve our financial situation. A hospital foundation would be another way for us to try and stabilize the finances of the hospital and to improve things by buying additional equipment and making upgrades that will help our customers as they come in,” Watson said.

 SCKMC staff organized a 5K obstacle race in August as one of the first public fundraising efforts towards developing a hospital foundation. The event raised over $9,000 for the hospital. Watson hopes this most recent donation adds to the momentum and encourages others to contribute.

 “I would like for (this donation) to be the spring board for developing a full fledge foundation that people could leave gifts, either monetary or property for the hospital. My experience is that once people know about that it seems to take off and mushroom into something much larger than we ever anticipated. We welcome all those, anonymously or if they would like to be publicly identified as having made a donation to us, and we appreciate them more than they can ever know,” Watson said.

 Those interested in contributing towards SCKMC’s “Building a Future of Excellence” campaign, or assisting in the development of a hospital foundation should contact a member of the hospital’s administrative team at (620) 442-2500, or for more information visit SCKMC’s website, www.sckmc.org.