SCKMC Begins Next Phase of Healthcare Development

Now that South Central Kansas Medical Center is established in its new replacement facility, hospital leadership is turning its attention to "building a future
of excellence". A healthcare development initiative being led by the medical center that focuses on improving health services in the region.

Hospital CEO, Steve Perkins, outlined the vision plans. These include: strengthening the medical staff through redoubled efforts to recruit physicians; further development of the Building a Future of Excellence Fund; enhancement of the programs and delivery of care; and, development of the Patterson Park area.

SCKMC wants to engage the community in the efforts to recruit physicians to the area. Presently there are active efforts to add family practice physicians and a general surgeon. Perkins said, "It has been my experience that attracting physicians who have some connection or attachment to the community yields the greatest long term success. We want members of our community to know we are seeking these physicians in hopes of having prospects identified to us."

Perkins indicated that citizens often have family members, distant relatives or friends who might have interest in relocating here. "We hope the citizens will let us know if they are aware of such candidates," he said.

In the fall of 2010, SCKMC launched its Building a Future of Excellence Financial Campaign that seeks gifts to help for capital equipment purposes as well as accepting funds to support programs. The program has received a number of gifts, with others expected to be announced soon. Perkins said, "Opportunities range from providing support to name a portion of the new facility, to providing funding that can assist in providing new equipment, or many other ways. The gifts will allow us to reach to a higher level and obtain needed items we would otherwise not be able to acquire."

Perkins reported that SCKMC is continuing to look for ways to enhance their programs and delivery of care. Team leaders are engaged to consider how programs can be improved or new ones developed that will meet community need. Facility leadership is engaging the staff in setting and reaching higher standards.

With a master plan in place for Patterson Park, attention is now being turned to find
others who would like to be on that site. Patterson Park is the 168 acre site within Arkansas City where the hospital sits. Additional medical facilities, senior housing, a hotel and other operations are possible additions within the master plan. Perkins said that all leads for development will be pursued to see if they fit and can be accomplished.

"Although much of the heavy lifting has been done with the hospital's relocation, we have much more to do. We're far from finished building a future of excellence," Perkins said.