Barbara Willm delivers Lexington Medical Center update, Skipper introduced as chamber executive director

Barbara Willm, LMC. 

Barbara Willm talked about the Lexington Medical Center expansion, and Richard Skipper was introduced as the Chamber’s new executive director, Tuesday, at the Greater Cayce-West Columbia Chamber of Commerce Breakfast.

Willm, LMC’s vice president of development and community relations, gave an update of the expansion that is now taking place at the hospital on Sunset Boulevard in West Columbia.  

The hospital is in the middle of a $400-million-plus expansion scheduled to be completed in the spring of 2019. The plan is to add a 10-floor tower, 545,000 square feet, capacity for 236 beds, eight operating rooms, and 20 specially designed nursery beds for new mothers and babies.

Willm said the building effort is on schedule and two floors of the new wing could open early. She also shared some information about the hospital.

We are the largest employer in Lexington County,” Willm said. LMC, that currently has 438 patient beds, employs 6,269 people. It has 339 doctors in 77 locations. The hospital admits 31,390 per-year, and sees an average of 393 patients-a-day.

There are more than 3,300 births, and 24,000 operations annually at Lexington Medical Center. It lead the midlands in the number of both.

There are two open-heart surgery rooms at LMC and the hospital’s foundation gave away more than $1.1 million last year.

Richard Skipper

Willm said $114 million being spent for the expansion is going to local firms.

Skipper, who was named the C-WC Chamber’s executive director earlier this month, also spoke.

He said he plans to get out into the community and form strong relationships with business owners.

I will not be tied to a desk,” Skipper said. “I want to get out in the community and find out what you need.

He also said he wants to develop a family-type atmosphere like he established with Midlands Media Group, from where he came.

Skipper said he has already communicated with the elected leaders or personnel from Cayce, West Columbia and Springdale, to let them know he wants to work with them.

Skipper said he sees strong growth potential for the chamber community.