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Foundations for Faxton-St. Luke’s, St. Elizabeth Medical Center merge to become MVHS Foundation

By Eric Reinhardt


UTICA, N.Y. — The Faxton-St. Luke’s Healthcare (FSLH) Foundation and the St. Elizabeth Medical Center (SEMC) Foundation have merged to become the Mohawk Valley Health System (MVHS) Foundation.

The New York State Department of State on Dec. 31 accepted a certificate of incorporation to consolidate the fundraising activities of both organizations, MVHS said in a news release.

The change in status means the organization can standardize protocols, investments and shared processes among the MVHS Foundation and will provide an “easier process” for donations. Donors will still be able to direct their gift within the organization, MVHS said.

“The merger of the fund-raising activities of the FSLH Foundation and SEMC Foundation will have tremendous benefits for the community and allow us to better contribute toward providing the best possible care to our patients and residents,” John Forbes, VP of philanthropy at MVHS, contended. “We couldn’t have reached this point without the generosity from our past donors and are eager to have the ability to expand the scope of funding we can provide and make it very easy for our donors moving forward.”

The mission of the MVHS Foundation is to raise money for MVHS to help it purchase equipment and expand and improve its health-care services.

“The merger of the foundations’ fund-raising activities will make it much easier [easier] to achieve our mission,” Terry Mielnicki, president of the MVHS Foundation board, said in the release. “Donors no longer have to choose between the two foundations when making a donation. However, they still have the option to direct gifts to a specific hospital, nursing home, affiliate, service or department. Additionally, they can now choose to support MVHS as a whole.”

In addition to the operational efficiencies, the change in status also means changes for Children’s Miracle Network (CMN) Hospitals at FSLH. CMN at FSLH will now be called CMN at MVHS and as such able to direct funds throughout MVHS. Prior to the change, funds could only be directed to FSLH.

Process history

In June 2016, following the 2014 affiliation of FSLH and SEMC to form MVHS, the two foundations began holding foundation board meetings together which allowed for both boards to share ideas and hear information simultaneously. In April 2017, the two foundation boards decided to create a mirror board which enabled the FSLH Foundation and SEMC Foundation to “essentially operate as one board.”

Last September, the organizations submitted a letter to the New York State Public Health and Health Planning Council (PHHPC), requesting approval of a plan to merge the fundraising activities of the two foundations. In October, the PHHPC had approved the request. Following the approval, they filed a petition with the Oneida County Supreme Court seeking approval of the plan. In December, a Supreme Court judge granted the request. The filing of a restated certificate of incorporation with the New York Secretary of State made the changes official, MVHS said.

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