KershawHealth has always had close ties to the community, beginning with the founding of Camden Hospital by private citizens in 1913. In that year, financier and philanthropist Bernard Baruch and a local group donated funds to build the not-for-profit hospital, and the nursing school was organized. After a fire in 1921, the main building was replaced with a larger one.
Later, Marion DuPont Scott bequeathed Springdale Race Course to the state with the stipulation that part of the annual Carolina and Colonial Cup proceeds be given to KershawHealth. In 1958, a new, larger facility opened, and the name was changed to Kershaw County Memorial Hospital, in honor of those from Kershaw County who served their country in all wars.
In 1971, the Karesh Long Term Care Center opened, further expanding the hospital’s role and providing 88 skilled nursing beds for the community. With the opening of this center, the old Camden Hospital was closed. A 1981 construction project brought a new emergency room and laboratory, as well as major renovations to the pharmacy, respiratory therapy department, and medical library. Six years later, the new outpatient services building was added, which included a larger emergency room, laboratory, physical therapy, cardiac rehabilitation, pharmacy, speech therapy, audiology, cardiology and radiology, as well as renovation of the operating rooms, recovery rooms and labor and delivery. By 1989, the number of acute care beds reached 100.
In the 1990s, home health and hospice services were added and the hospital’s name was changed to Kershaw County Medical Center, to better reflect its expanding healthcare role. The Health Resource Center, dedicated to bringing outreach, education and wellness programs to the community, opened on Battleship Road. Kershaw County Medical Center further extended its reach into the larger community by opening the Healthcare Place at Elgin, the Healthcare Place at Bethune, and the West Wateree Medical Complex in Lugoff.
By the beginning of the 21st century, the medical center had 121 acute care beds, and construction was begun to enlarge the facility by 71,000 square feet. That addition, which included a new main entrance and lobby area, a new 24-bed nursing unit, an eight-bed intensive care unit, five operating rooms, cardiovascular diagnostics and cardiac rehabilitation, also allowed our physicians to perform more complex surgeries. In 2009, to better reflect our ongoing evolution into a comprehensive healthcare system, Kershaw County Medical Center became KershawHealth.
Through all the changes we’ve seen in our nearly 100 years of service to this community, one thing has never altered. Our mission is still to provide all of the citizens of Kershaw County and surrounding communities with quality, cost-effective, personalized healthcare and to improve their health and well-being.
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