Freeman News

Freeman Donates $1 Million to CHC-SEK

December 22, 2020

Investing in Future Health Care Workers

Joplin, MO – Freeman Health System is investing a million dollars in the future of healthcare in southeast Kansas with a donation to the Community Health Center of Southeast Kansas (CHC-SEK) capital campaign.

“Freeman Health System is honored to make this gift to Community Health Center of Southeast Kansas to help establish the John Parolo Education Center,” said Paula F. Baker, Freeman President and Chief Executive Officer. “We applaud CHC for its leadership in creating this much-needed educational environment. Freeman Health System is honored to work alongside CHC to provide specialty services to the residents of Southeast Kansas. We value our collaborative efforts with this extraordinary organization.”    

The John Parolo Education Center will work to educate local healthcare workers with a goal of keeping them in the area to practice as doctors, physician’s assistants, nurse practitioners and dental hygienists. The intent is to have as many as 10 third- and fourth-year medical students and up to four residents at the education center. Construction on the new $5 million campus is to begin in 2021.

“The overwhelming support and generosity of Freeman Health System most certainly demonstrates its true commitment to the future of healthcare in southeast Kansas,” said Krista Postai, CHC-SEK President and CEO. “This is an investment not only in health education, but also in the lives of hundreds of our young people who will now have the opportunity to train locally and then serve the communities in which there were raised. This is indeed a dream come true, and we are honored that Freeman President and CEO Paula Baker – who grew up just a few blocks from where this health education center will be built – shares our vision of training health professionals who are fully committed to the people they serve.  We are extremely appreciative for their willingness – especially in the midst of a worldwide pandemic – to look beyond today to a better, healthier tomorrow.”




About Freeman Health System

Locally owned, not-for-profit and nationally recognized, Freeman Health System includes Freeman Hospital West, Freeman Hospital East, Freeman Neosho Hospital and Ozark Center – the area’s largest provider of behavioral health services – as well as two urgent care clinics, dozens of physician clinics and a variety of specialty services. In 2020, Freeman earned dozens of individual awards for medical excellence and patient safety from CareChex®, a quality rating system that helps consumers evaluate healthcare providers. U.S. News & World Report named Freeman Health System the Best Hospital in Southwest Missouri for 2020. With more than 320 physicians on staff representing more than 80 specialties, Freeman provides cancer care, heart care, neurology and neurosurgery, orthopaedics, children’s services and women’s services. Additionally, Freeman is the only Children’s Miracle Network Hospital in a 70-mile radius. For more information, visit