The Bourbon County Commission will be receiving the former Mercy Hospital building at 401 Woodland Hills Blvd. and $600,000 from Mercy as a donation to the county, Rob Harrington, Bourbon County Economic Development Director said in an email.
Mercy Hospital Fort Scott closed in October 2018.
The Sisters of Mercy had served the community since 1886.
Community Health Center of Southeast Kansas has had a clinic at the building since Mercy closed, but is moving when its’ lease is up at the end of 2022.
They have purchased the former Price Chopper store, 2322 Main Street, for their new facility.
The emergency department at the former hospital building also has a lease that will be up in 2022.
The county commission has been working on a solution to keep the building viable, as opposed to tearing the two-decades-old building down.
“Today is the beginning of a process, “Bourbon County Commissioner Clifton Beth said. “The attorneys will be going through the process of accepting the donation and the $600,000.”
“We are in conversation with different entities that could potentially have use for that building,” Beth said.
The Bourbon County Commission is comprised of Beth, Lynne Oharah and Jim Harris.
Beth said credit needs to go to Harrington who has been working to find entities that are interested.
“A lot of behind-the-scenes work is going on,” Beth said.
“We are trying to save the building,” Beth said. “My main priority is to have an Emergency Room in Bourbon County.”
“At the end of the day, the end users for that building, if they can use it, great,” Beth said. “If not, we’ll look at other options.”
“My goal is to be sure we have an ER,” Beth said. “Ascension Via Christi has one-and-one-half years left on their (current) lease. In conversations with them, they are planning to stay.”
To see more info on Ascension Via Christi: