Fundraising Effort Underway For Falls City Hospital Project

(KLZA)-- Unexpected engineering needs and higher than expected bids on the Community Medical Center renovation and expansion project in Falls City has put a key part of the project in jeopardy.

During a news conference at the hospital Friday afternoon CMC Administrator, Ryan Larsen said the CMC Foundation has pledged to raise more than three-quarters of a million dollars so the Specialty Clinic could be included.  

In May, CMC broke ground on what was announced as a $9-million project to add a new primary care clinic, expand and renovate surgery, add in-house MRI and expand and renovate the clinic for visiting specialists. When the final numbers came in, the costs rose to just over $10-million.

The intent was to use hospital reserves to pay for the project, but the added cost raised concerns. Larsen recommended to the Construction Committee and to the CMC Board of Directors to hold off on the Specialty Clinic for now and hopefully add them at a later date. The Construction Committee felt this was a high priority need for the facility. 

Foundation Board President Rodger Merz suggested community support for the Specialty Clinic would be strong enough that donations could be raised to fund the clinic portion of the project and the Foundation Board voted in favor of the fundraising effort. 

With the project being completed in three phases, and the Specialty Clinic being the final phase, scheduled for construction in fall 2017, it gives the Foundation Board time to raise funds and allow the Board to review the fiscal status of the hospital. 

The goal is to make improvements to the facility, but not put the future of the hospital in peril.

Larsen went on to say that despite no prior publicity of the fund raising efforts, several individuals and families have come forward to make contributions. 

Anyone interested in making a donation or a pledge toward the project can contact Larsen, a member of the Foundation Board or log onto the CMC website