Roper St. Francis Foundation recipient of largest philanthropic donation to date

Roper St. Francis Foundation, the fundraising arm of Roper St. Francis Healthcare, has received a $1.3 million gift from the late Dr. Harold S. and Corinne N. Pettit to establish an endowment.

The gift is the single largest philanthropic donation in the non-profit healthcare system’s history. The money will be put toward enhancing patient care, acquiring state of the art medical technology and supporting facility enhancements and improvements at Roper Hospital. Here's more from the press release:

“Dr. and Mrs. Pettit have been generous supporters of Roper Hospital and the care provided by our physicians and staff since Dr. Pettit served as Chief of Radiology for Roper Hospital,” said Matt Severance, CEO of Roper Hospital. “This recent gift will not only help us expand our services, update our facilities and introduce new technology, it will continue to benefit the care of our patients for years to come.”This recent donation is one of many ways the Pettits have supported Roper Hospital for several decades. Dr. Pettit, who passed away in June 1987, and Mrs. Pettit, who passed away in June 2009, made their first donation to the hospital in 1991. Since then, they have made gifts to benefit Roper Hospital Imaging, the Roper Hospital Heart & Vascular Tower and Roper St. Francis nursing scholarships, totaling in excess of $2.3 million.“Dr. and Mrs. Pettit have always had a great deal of affection for their Roper Hospital family, including the physicians and staff,” said John P. Linton, Attorney with Duffy & Young and Executor of Pettit Estate.Dr. Pettit served as Chief of Radiology at Roper Hospital from 1949 to 1983. He was an active member on several boards including the Board of Commissioners for Roper Hospital, on which he served for 19 years. He served as Chairman of the Board for eight years. Dr. Pettit was elected to the membership of the Medical Society of South Carolina in 1949, and served as its President from 1966-1968. Mrs. Pettit served on the RSF Foundation Board of Directors from 1987 to 1999.Dr. Pettit was known for his excellence in diagnostic radiology, which he practiced until a few weeks before his death. For decades, Dr. Pettit was an unofficial advisor, helper and confidante to many physicians, young and old, from many specialties. His office was open to all. He was an active philanthropist, an attribute known to few. Shortly after Dr. Pettit’s death, Mrs. Pettit established an endowment to support the education of imaging technologists.“Philanthropy is critical to the future of Roper St. Francis Healthcare,” says John Holloway, Chairman of the Board of Directors for the Roper St. Francis Foundation and a founding member of the Rx Society. “We are grateful to the Pettits for their gift, which is unique because it comes from a physician who recognized the quality of patient care at Roper St. Francis Healthcare. We hope their generosity will inspire others in the community to continue to support Roper St. Francis and local healthcare.”Donor gifts to the RSF Foundation in recent years have helped fund the latest medical technology such as CyberKnife, a painless, noninvasive radiation alternative to surgery, and the da Vinci Surgical System, a minimally invasive robotic surgical system. In addition, the generosity of Foundation donors has helped fund projects like enhancements to the Heart & Vascular Tower at Roper Hospital, including the Surgical Pavilion named for the late surgeon Julian T. Buxton, Jr., MD; the Roper St. Francis Cancer Center, including the Breast Care Center as well as renovation of inpatient oncology rooms and the outpatient infusion center at Roper Hospital and the new Mount Pleasant Hospital, an 85-bed full service medical facility set to open November 1, 2010 in northern Mount Pleasant adjacent to Wando High School.And, some projects, like the Meditation Garden at Bon Secours St. Francis Hospital, which opened earlier this spring, and the new Cardiac Rehab and Wellness Center at Roper Hospital, currently on the drawing board, are funded entirely by philanthropy and would not be possible without donor gifts to the Foundation, added Holloway.###

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