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Health News Florida

Baptist Chemotheraphy Infusion Center Gets Major Gift

baptist_health_ctr.jpg
Credit ebaptisthealthcare.org

Baptist Cancer Institute’s Infusion Center is getting an infusion of its own: a $100,000 gift from Pensacola businessman and former Baptist Hospital President Quint Studer, and his wife Rishy.

“We were sitting one day and I said ‘Let’s give something to Baptist Healthcare,’” said Studer. “[Rishy] said OK and I said ‘What do you think we should give?’ and she said ‘What if we do $100,000?’”

With that, the Studers contacted Baptist President and CEO Mark Faulkner about their planned gift, and asked Faulkner if he could come up with the best use for it.

“And then Mark came over and met with Rishy and gave her some options, and she chose the Infusion Center,” said Studer.

“We had an opportunity to expand our Infusion Center and we got some monies to do that,” said Brian Taylor, Director of Oncology Service Line at Baptist. “[The Studers] were interested in helping us to furnish and/or make this endeavor even better.”

Taylor says the infusion piece of their oncology program, along with the overall program, has grown exponentially over the past few years.

“Our current footprint has become very constrained,” Taylor said. “We have 16 [infusion] chairs up on the second floor. We not only do chemotherapy, we do other infusions also. And just with the sheer volume increase, it was time for us to make another plan.”

The money will go towards expanding the Center and separating oncology chemotherapy from the other infusion services. That way, says Taylor, those undergoing chemo can be a bit more comfortable. Besides the new infusion chairs for chemotherapy, other equipment and furniture will be purchased as well.

“Some private small televisions for each one of the bays; more atmosphere – static things that are real pleasing [such as] dimmable lighting and things like that,” said Taylor.”

Other infusion services, cardiology, antibiotic, rheumatology, osteoporosis and gastrointestinal, will remain where they are, with the area undergoing a bit of a makeover. The TVs and other aesthetics are more than just eye candy. Taylor says the idea is to treat patients when they’re relaxed and confident.

“There won’t be all the hustle and bustle, there won’t be all the noise; and congestion that you could potentially find in our current state,” Taylor said. “That will give them the opportunity to just relax, maybe sleep, read, listen to music, and watch TV. Do whatever they need to do to pass the time.”

“The Studers have a long history of supporting this community; we’re just grateful they came to us and wanted to help us find a project that was near to their hearts,” said KC Gartman, Executive Director of the Baptist Health Care Foundation. It’s been her experience that a gift such as this tends to open the door to more generosity elsewhere.

“We’re very lucky to live in a community where the people who live here are so generous,” Gartman said. “There is this continuous outpouring of philanthropic support for all of the non-profit organizations in our community.”

Target date for completion and opening of the new facilities is late this summer. Also included will be a pharmacy to support the education of both patients and staff, along with providing quality control and safety.

Copyright 2020 WUWF. To see more, visit WUWF.