Anonymous donors pay off medical bills for 430 Pratt families at Pratt Regional Medical Center

Jennifer Stultz
Pratt Tribune
Britt Oller, Pratt postal service worker, delivered some good news to hundreds of Pratt residents last week, then found herself and her family on the receiving end of an unforgettable and kind gesture.

Britt Oller, and members of 429 other Pratt families and individuals are not likely to forget something special that happened in January 2021 anytime soon.

Two anonymous donors paid off more than $95,000 in medical bills at Pratt Regional Medical Center.

“I found out about it through the mail,” said Oller, who is a postal worker for the U.S. Postal Service in Pratt.

“I kept seeing these letters that I was delivering that had a red line across the top and said ‘take notice, open right away’ or something like that. I remember thinking that I hoped these people would all get their important news,” Oller said. “When I got home later that night I was surprised to see we had a letter like that in our mail too.”

Upon opening the letter, Oller and her husband, Randy, found that their family, along with 429 others, had been the beneficiaries of generous donors who wiped clean their unpaid medical bills at PRMC.

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“For us, even though we both work full time, with three kids it is like, sometimes, can we pay the $250 medical bill or take the kids to day care, our budget is that tight right now. And then this happened. It was such a godsend,” Oller said. “It was so cool to get something that so many in town were getting. And then I thought, holy cow, this is real!”

According to Andie Dean, PRMC communications specialist, a friend and supporter of PRMC had contacted hospital officials with a specific desire to help patients of PRMC  who might be in financial need.

“Our generous donor wanted to do something directly for patients rather than contribute to a fundraising campaign or assist with the purchase of capital equipment,” Dean said.

The donor, who wished to remain anonymous, met with Alan Waites, PRMC chief financial officer, and they decided to help two groups of patients.

The first group was those with left-over balances of up to $300 after all insurance settlements had been paid. This amounted to over 400 families, representing a total of nearly $52,500. The second group included 30 families who had been making regular monthly payments faithfully on their account for many years, some as far back as 2002. The remaining balances on these 30 accounts was over $42,000. 

“Our more-than-generous friend of PRMC decided to pay off these balances as well (along with some help from a second donor), bringing the total amount donated to $95,000,” Dean said.

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Waites said that generous donations like those made last week help PRMC accomplish its mission of providing excellent and compassionate health care services.

“With all the struggles we’ve all been through this past year, it’s great to have some good news to share,” Waites said. “The amazing generosity of these two donors for the direct benefit of our patients will be a tremendous blessing for the recipients, and for the PRMC community as a whole.”

For Oller, the experience was a humbling one.

“It was just a shock, and we are so thankful," she said. "It’s honestly just very humbling.”