Scripps Memorial Hospital
Scripps Memorial Hospital in La Jolla. Photo courtesy of Scripps Health

Scripps Health announced Tuesday that The Conrad Prebys Foundation has launched a $1 million challenge match gift to help provide critical supplies for front-line health care workers in the fight against COVID-19.

“During his lifetime, Conrad was a true friend to Scripps who continued the legacy of philanthropy set by our founder, Ellen Browning Scripps, nearly a century ago,” said Chris Van Gorder, Scripps president and CEO. “Given his unwavering commitment to San Diego, it is fitting that his foundation has taken a leadership role with a gift to fund critical supplies, support front-line caregivers and potentially help save thousands of lives during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Scripps has launched a dedicated nurse call line and set up triage tents outside emergency departments and urgent care centers where patients with fever and/or respiratory symptoms are evaluated. Thousands of masks, gowns and other crucial supplies are used daily to protect doctors, nurses and patients.

The foundation’s board of directors “hopes this gift will inspire others to join it in supporting Scripps and the doctors and nurses out on the front lines fighting this pandemic. The board believes this is the kind of gift Conrad would have made himself,” a Scripps Health statement said.

“Conrad would be pleased to know that we are already seeing a tremendous response from our donors,” Scripps Health Corporate senior vice president and chief development officer John Engle said. “The challenge match campaign just launched, and I have every confidence that with the help of our community, we will achieve our goal of $1 million in community matching donations.”

Conrad Prebys was a philanthropic leader in San Diego, donating more than $81 million to Scripps Health to help fund new facilities that bear his name. The Conrad Prebys Foundation was established to support medical research and treatment, performing and visual arts, public broadcasting, and other charitable purposes consistent with Prebys’ history of philanthropy during his lifetime, with an emphasis on such philanthropy in the San Diego area.

To support the COVID-19 Challenge Match, visit or call Scripps Health Foundation at 844-442- 4483.

— City News Service