LEAVENWORTH, KS (KCTV) -- Saint Luke’s Health System will be closing Saint Luke’s Cushing Hospital due to unexpected costs of preparing for and managing the COVID-19 pandemic.
Although the hospital will close Oct. 1, Saint Luke’s Primary Care–Cushing will remain open and accessible to patients.
Saint Luke’s has invested more than $20 million in Cushing Hospital over the last five years to improve services and enhance the facility.
“This was an extremely difficult decision and one we never wanted to make,” said Adele Ducharme, CEO, Saint Luke’s Cushing Hospital & SLHS North Region. “In 2019, we launched a new model for Saint Luke’s Cushing Hospital. Our hope was that by focusing on emergency services, we would set Cushing on a successful and sustainable financial path while providing the Leavenworth County community the services most essential to them. We were just a few months into this new model when COVID-19 hit.”
In addition to substantial increased costs for necessary supplies to treat and care for COVID-19 patients and protect health care workers, the health system also deferred many elective procedures out of concern for the health and safety of patients, staff and the community.
“The financial impact of the unexpected global pandemic was unprecedented,” Ducharme said. “As a result, we never had the opportunity to fully test this new care model for Cushing Hospital to see how successful it could be.”
Approximately 70 employees may be impacted by this decision, but all are eligible to apply for other opportunities within the health system between now and the official closure date.
Saint Luke's Health System issued the following statement Tuesday:
Caring for patients and their families is the mission of Saint Luke's Health System and at the foundation of everything we do and every decision we make. Closing a facility is not something we ever take lightly. COVID-19 has forced not only Saint Luke's but hospitals and health systems across the country to make difficult decisions to ensure we are well-positioned to care for as many patients as possible across all the communities we serve.
Over the past five years, Saint Luke's has invested more than $20 million to improve and enhance Cushing Hospital. It was our hope that the new Community Hospital model we transitioned to last fall would prove successful and allow us to continue to provide emergency services to the Leavenworth Community for many years to come. Unfortunately, the timing and impact of COVID-19, has resulted in the need to make a decision now regarding the financial viability of that hospital.
Though the hospital will close October 1, our Saint Luke's primary care clinic in the Cushing Medical Office Building—and its five board-certified family and internal medicine physicians--will continue to serve the area's patients and families. Our specialty clinics also remain open.
We look forward to continuing to care for the Leavenworth community now and into the future.