PORT ANGELES – Despite a global pandemic, the Olympic Medical Center Foundation just capped its biggest year ever for fundraising.

The Foundation presented $155,000 to Olympic Medical Center at the OMC Commissioners this week. It will be used to purchase a cardiovascular ultrasound machine for the OMC Heart Center, “Biofire” testing equipment for COVID-19, and for a new service at the OMC Cancer Center.

Foundation Executive Director Bruce Skinner says that donation is part of a record-setting $645,000 raised this year.

“I think the number one reason for that, there are some businesses that have done well during the pandemic and they really have stepped up and been extremely generous. They’re local businesses and they really have supported the community.”

Skinner says all their fundraising went virtual this year. He says moving forward, they may keep some of that element in place.

“One thing we found out is that we’re getting a lot of people attending our events that would never attend in person. They just don’t like to, you know, dress up and go out to gala type events. But when given the opportunity to attend virtually, they purchased tickets to attend. So I think that, you know, going forward we probably will still have virtual options for people to attend.”

Other non-profits locally have had similar big success by moving ahead with fundraising events virtually.

In the foundation’s latest donations to OMC, the new machine for the Heart Center will perform echocardiograms to evaluate the structures of the heart and the direction of blood flow. The “Biofire” equipment provides another source of testing for COVID as well as other illnesses. The Cancer Center will benefit as it will be able to offer Palliative Care, a specialized care for people living with serious illness.