As of Wednesday, January 3, 2018
Through the refinancing of 2007 general obligation bonds in August 2017, Klickitat County Hospital District No. 2 obtained $5 million in additional financing for planned capital projects at Skyline Hospital.
Now, Skyline Hospital’s fund-raising arm, the Skyline Foundation, is in the midst of a capital campaign to raise $2 million to match the $5 million the Hospital District is investing in capital projects. The hospital’s board of commissioners believes these projects serve the hospital’s mission of “providing the best quality care for our patients.”
Elizabeth Vaivoda, executive director of the Skyline Foundation, said the Hospital District “took advantage of the low interest rates in August of 2017” to refinance bonds issued by the district in 2007.
“This allowed us to obtain an additional $5 million in bond funds,” Vaivoda noted, “which is solely earmarked for the Emergency Department expansion, centralized lobby reconfiguration, and updated boiler and HVAC systems.”
These projects fall under the foundation’s Expanding on Excellence capital campaign, which launched last July in support of the Emergency Department expansion and renovation portion of the project. A feasibility study completed last year for the Skyline Board and administration laid out the scope of planned improvements.
“The foundation has currently raised $115,000 from 13 supporters in our local community,” said Vaivoda, “and we are well on our way to securing funds from government entities, foundations, local businesses, and other key community leaders.”
The Hospital District will not be asking voters to approve a bond measure to pay for any of the work, nor will it be using funds it receives through a 2016 voter-authorized maintenance and operations property tax levy.
“The intention is not to use funds from from the levy for this project,” Vaivoda said. “Our plan is to use the funds from the bond refinancing and the capital fund-raising campaign.”
Vaivoda added that the capital campaign “will most likely run for the next 18 months.”
The Emergency Department project will double the current square footage, add a triage room for assessing patients, increase privacy for patients, provide a dedicated visitor waiting area, and result in greater efficiencies in patient care and discharge.
Key parts of the project are the relocations of the main entrance and patient registration desk, and the ambulance port (see image below).
The new main entrance and registration/lobby area will be placed where the ER is currently housed. The ER will be moved into the areas now used for the main en-trance, lobby area, and administrative offices. The ambulance port will be on the north side of the facility.
Updating the boiler and heating/ventilation/air conditioning systems will improve comfort for Skyline patients, families, visitors, and employees.
Margaret Walker is honorary chair of the all-volunteer Capital Campaign Steering Committee. Bob Weisfield is acting chair.
Other members are Skyline Commissioner Jonathan Blake, Scott Clements, Lorrie Knowles, Ricky Knowles, Sue Massart, Janet McCutcheon, and Klickitat County Commissioner David Sauter.