LEAVENWORTH — The former Saint Luke's Cushing Hospital building is being donated to the Leavenworth County government.


"This is a big deal for us," County Commission Chairman Doug Smith said. "We will be good stewards of it."


Commissioners voted unanimously Wednesday to accept the donation of the former hospital building. County Administrator Mark Loughry said commissioners will vote on a formal donation agreement next week.


Commissioners have not announced any official plans for the building, which is located in Leavenworth. But Smith said potential uses include existing county services, expanding services for youth and the aging population, expanding available health services and offering space to non-profit organizations and other organizations.


Saint Luke's Cushing Hospital closed earlier this month.


Officials with Saint Luke’s Health System cited the financial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic as being responsible for the decision to close the hospital.


Cushing Hospital was established in 1894 by Harriet Cushing.


Representatives of the hospital and the hospital's foundation were on hand for Wednesday's County Commission meeting.


"We feel this would be a good use for that property as we vacate it," said Adele Ducharme, chief executive officer for the hospital.


Smith said county commissioners are committed to making certain the legacy of Harriet Cushing will continue by using the building that bears her name to serve Leavenworth County.


Loughry said some improvements to the building may be needed. He said the building is a multi-million facility. Regardless of the cost of the improvements, he said the building still presents a great opportunity for the county.


He said the county probably will not take possession of the building until the end of November.