King County Public Hospital District #2 (EvergreenHealth) was created by a vote of the people in 1968 and opened its doors to the public in 1972. In 47 years of serving our community, EvergreenHealth has only had three capital improvement Capital Improvement Bonds (UTGO). Your publicly elected Hospital Commissioners have been very judicious about asking the voters to approve Capital Improvement Bonds. They are requesting your support now for these critical improvements.
Since 1972, our community has embraced EvergreenHealth as the Eastside’s public hospital district, supporting our organization’s evolution every step of the way. We strive to meet the growing needs of our patients and enrich the health and well-being of every life we touch.
Lifelong residents and new families alike continue to recognize the value of the services we offer close to home, earning community preference and recognition from industry peers.
We're proud to have been named one of the nation’s top 100 hospitals for the second year in a row, and also be the recipient of accolades from Healthgrades, Leapfrog, CMS and other notable national accolades. Learn more about our recognition for quality health care
We thank the residents of our district for their forward-looking vision over the past 47 years and continued partnership in helping us meet the ever evolving needs of our growing community through EverHealthy.
Because EvergreenHealth is a public hospital district it is a Municipal Corporation and is treated as a governmental agency. Unlike private and other not-for-profit hospitals, EvergreenHealth is audited yearly by the State Auditor.
In addition, EvergreenHealth is subject to all State of Washington open public meeting and public disclosure laws. This insures the Board of Commissions and the District’s operations are more transparent to the public than other private and not-for-profit hospitals.
How is EvergreenHealth governed? How is the board of commissioners different from private hospitals?
As a public hospital district, EvergreenHealth is governed by a publicly elected seven member board of commissioners. This is different from private hospitals, which are often led by internally-appointed boards of directors. EvergreenHealth’s publically elected board has ultimate responsibility and accountability for the hospital district and the quality of its medical care and financial stewardship on behalf of the district's residents. The board approves all major financial decisions along with many other responsibilities as provided by law.
In 2016, EvergreenHealth sought to expand our number of board members from five to seven. The Eastside community voted to approve the expansion, to support additional representation of the growing population within our district.
Over the past 47 years, the Board of Commissioners have been committed to making sure EvergreenHealth is a public hospital to serve all the residents of our community. They take their stewardship of your tax dollars seriously to ensure they are spent judiciously to provide facilities and programs that will benefit the entire community whether needed in a time of crisis or for on-going medical needs.
How does the community benefit from a public hospital district model?
Because public district hospitals are created by the community, for the community, the public hospital district model is vital to ensuring citizens have access to the health care services they need.
The public hospital district model also empowers public hospital districts to respond to their population’s changing and growing health care needs over time. The sole mission of a public hospital district is to serve its community and respond to the community’s own unique demands and challenges to ensure the best possible care for patients and families.
Today, the levy money is used to provide much-needed community health services. There isn't profit in providing health classes for seniors, or in helping the community’s underinsured connect with preventative care. Since EvergreenHealth is owned by the community, we believe we have a responsibility to provide these services regardless of their profitability.
Each levy program or service is made possible through levy funding and must directly meet a demonstrated need of the residents of the community. New and existing programs are evaluated based on the need, and whether the overall benefit to the community justifies the resources required.
While some levy-supported programs specifically address the special needs of the under-served, the chronically ill, the disabled and high-risk populations, the other programs meet the needs of the entire community. For instance, if you are one of the 100,000 callers who receives help from the EvergreenHealthline annually, or one of the 1,500 participants who join our health education classes annually, you have directly benefited from levy-supported services.
How are public hospital districts funded?
Public district hospitals are funded in various ways. The majority of financial support comes from private (commercial) and public (Medicare and Medicaid) insurance—like most hospitals. Because EvergreenHealth is a Public Hospital District it also receives funding from the taxpayers of the District in two ways: a Regular Levy which is assessed annually to all property owners and Special Levies which are voted on by the registered voters of the District.
EvergreenHealth’s publicly elected Board of Commissioners is integrally involved in the allocation of dollars received from our community’s taxpayers. These funds are used to pay for capital construction and community programs that contribute to the health and well-being of all our Public Hospital District residents.
EvergreenHealth is committed as a public hospital to providing programs that support our community’s needs and benefit our residents. This core value permeates the philosophy of the Board of Commissioners and its commitment to our community. Taxpayer support allows EvergreenHealth to offer community programs, unlike most private and not-for-profit hospitals.
What is EverHealthy – Proposition 1?
Proposition1 will fund the second phase of EvergreenHealth’s 10-year facility capital improvement plan, created in 2015. EverHealthy is our name for the 10-year facility capital improvement plan.
The successful first phase—made possible in part by community support—was completed in 2017 on time and on budget, creating:
Proposition 1 will transform EvergreenHealth’s Kirkland campus to help us continue to deliver the exceptional care and service our patients know and trust, and meet the health care needs of our community for decades and generations to come.
How was the EverHealthy plan created?
EverHealthy was approved in 2015 by the Board of Commissioners utilizing strategic insight to population trends, community health assessment and third-party projection data to help us understand and anticipate the growing health care and safety needs of our community.
The motivation for this plan includes:
What specific projects within the EverHealthy plan will Proposition 1 fund?
On the August 6 primary election ballot, the community will be presented with the opportunity to vote on the following projects:
Why are seismic upgrades critical?
Living in the Pacific Northwest we know an earthquake and the continued aftershocks can happen at any time. And, recent events in Southern California show us how quickly it can happen and the devastating impact it can have on a community. We also know that there is a fairly good chance when it happens as a District resident you will be at home or somewhere close to Evergreen Hospital. It is critical that Evergreen Hospital and its operations are available to serve the community in the event of a natural disaster.
The original hospital was built in 1970 to earthquake standards at that time. Over the past 47 years EvergreenHealth has expanded around the original hospital which is now the core of the campus. In addition, it houses all of the critical infrastructure to operate the entire campus.
The majority of the campus including the Emergency Department and Silver Tower is built to withstand a 9.0 earthquake. If there is a major earthquake the oldest parts of the campus including the original hospital will incur substantial damage impacting the ability of the entire campus to operate. The majority of Proposition 1 will be spent to retrofit the oldest buildings to withstand a 9.0 earthquake. EvergreenHealth will be operational and able to serve the community when it is most needed.
Proposition 1 also provides funding to move the Critical Care Unit which is currently in the original hospital to the Silver Tower to be closer to the Emergency Department. The hospital’s eight operating rooms are currently in the original hospital and will remain there for the foreseeable future. The proposed seismic retrofitting is critical to them remaining operational after a major earthquake.
The staff and Board of Commissioners have spent years determining the best and most cost effective way of upgrading these facilities and infrastructure. Based upon extensive research they have decided to retrofit the existing buildings rather than tear them down and rebuild to today’s earthquake standards. This decision will save the taxpayers of the District millions of dollars
Are the current buildings safe?
Yes. Our buildings meet the seismic codes that were in place at the time of construction. The majority of the campus is built to withstand a 9.0 earthquake.
If there is a major earthquake such as the ones in Alaska and now in Southern California, the oldest parts of the campus—including the original hospital—will incur substantial damage impacting the ability of the entire campus to operate.
The majority of Proposition 1 will be spent to retrofit the oldest buildings to withstand a 9.0 earthquake so EvergreenHealth will be operational and there to serve the community when it is most needed.
What areas of the Kirkland campus will be included in the seismic upgrades?
Upgrades will be made to the oldest areas of the campus. This includes the original 1972 hospital, as well as parts of our Central Garage and Coral medical office building space.
Services that are in the original hospital include: our eight operating rooms and recovery, as well as our current Critical Care Unit. Significant portions of vital infrastructure including IT, heating/cooling systems, Health Information Management, Lab, Outpatient Rehab Unit, Supply Chain Management, and more that must be upgraded to preserve our functionality after a disaster.
When will the seismic upgrades be completed?
The timelines for this project will be finalized after the election. We have completed a substantial amount of preliminary planning, but the specifics will be completed out once we kick off the project.
Our goal is to complete this project within the next two-to-three years. We will continue to update our community and keep everyone informed of our progress every step of the way.
How will a new critical care unit impact patients?
Many of the patients arriving in the Critical Care Unit (CCU) are admitted through the Emergency Department. Relocation of the CCU to the Silver Tower has been planned for many years and will bring these two departments closer together to improve the care for the patients.
Along with the absolute best and most modern technology, physical safety and exceptional clinical care, we will provide an environment that supports the full spectrum of care and treatment modalities—for critical care patients during some of the most vulnerable and critical moments of their lives.
The current CU is located in one of the oldest remaining portions of the original hospital. The new CCU will be moved to the third floor of the Silver tower, offering expanded space to support some of the most recent cutting-edge technology and design features creating the safest environment for patients, nurses, doctors and staff.
The new CCU space will also promote family-inclusive care, ensuring the health and well-being of the family members supporting loved ones in the CCU are accommodated during what is by nature of “critical” care, a very challenging time.
The Silver Tower currently has vacant space; why is it necessary to remodel, rather than move services into these existing spaces? Alternatively, why embark on a remodel, rather than build fully new construction for cost savings?
The projects in Proposition 1 will indeed relocate the Critical Care Unit to the Silver Tower, while preserving capacity in the existing Emergency Department and current CCU. This will allow us to utilize the new space in the Silver Tower for our most critical patients – doubling our capacity to do so – while adding space to treat and admit more patients in the event of a major disaster, such as an earthquake.
Additionally, we live in the country’s third most expensive region for new construction. Many of the areas of the hospital in need of seismic upgrades house departments that are expensive to maintain, including diagnostic imaging and radiation oncology. In developing our master facility strategic plan, we worked in consultation with a general contractor construction manager (GCCM) to recommend the most efficient and economical pathways to complete these critical projects.
When will the new critical care unit be completed?
The timeline for this project will begin to be finalized after the election. Along with physicians and staff, we have completed a significant amount of preliminary planning, but the specifics will be designed once the project officially begins. Our goal is to complete this project within the next one-to-two years.
Why is a new building necessary for outpatient medical care?
As our community population grows and evolves, so too does their health care needs. A new outpatient medical building will allow us to expand to meet these demonstrated needs and support our ability to offer new services, such as mental health.
What kind of mental health services will be offered?
Mental health care is an important part of our community’s overall health and well-being. A new outpatient medical building will poise our organization to provide mental health services and/or other outpatient services as we continue to learn more about the specific needs of our patients and their families, and how we can best tailor our services to support access to service this critical and vulnerable population.
EvergreenHealth is already the preferred birthing center, why are upgrades needed?
Our maternity center has not been updated since 1996, when EvergreenHealth became the first hospital in the United States to earn designation as a Baby-Friendly Hospital, a designation we still hold today.
Our goal in upgrading the Family Maternity Center is to ensure in the that all families now, and into the future, experience the excellent care that earned EvergreenHealth its Baby-Friendly status accompanied by the latest equipment, technology and if needed, critical care during one of the most important moments in a mom, baby and family’s life.
What will the Family Maternity Center upgrades include?
We anticipate a completely renovated Family Maternity Center, with a new entrance that safely and warmly greets patients and families, and modernized, hospitality-focused rooms to accommodate the entire family—with parent and baby’s safety and comfort top of mind.
Because of the reputation for quality and service that we have established, our highly regarded childbirth experience is often times close to capacity. The enhancement we have planned will allow us to increase the number of families we serve.
These upgrades will allow us to continue to welcome babies into the world in a setting that is safe and supportive of the needs of the laboring mothers, the multi-generational family and our littlest patients.
When will the unit be updated?
The timelines for this project will begin to be finalized after the election. Along with physicians and staff, we have completed a substantial amount of preliminary planning, but the specifics will be definitively determined once the project officially begins.
Our goal is to continue to update our community, keeping everyone informed of our progress every step of the way.
King Country Public Hospital District #2 (EvergreenHealth) was created by a vote of the people in 1968 and opened its doors to the public in 1972.
In 47 years of serving our community EvergreenHealth has only had three Capital Improvement (UTGO) Bond Issues. Your publicly elected Hospital Commissioners have been very judicious about asking the voters to approve Capital Improvement Bonds. They are requesting your support now. The projects included in Proposition 1 are critical to the future of EvergreenHealth, our public district hospital and our community.
Proposition 1 will provide critical seismic and safety improvements, relocate and update the Critical Care Unit, and allow for expanded services without increasing EvergreenHealth’s total tax rate.
Following the April 23 election, the Commissioners took feedback from voters and learned the community wants to continue to our public district hospital, but many people are also concerned about a tax increase. That’s why Prop 1 was re-designed to support the hospital’s critical needs without increasing EvergreenHealth’s total tax rate. This was accomplished by extending projects and issuing the bonds over 4 years rather than 3 years.
Since 2013, the property tax rate paid to EvergreenHealth, our pubic district hospital, has decreased by almost 40% while the population has increased by 9% or 25,000 residents. This increase is equal to a city the size of Kenmore.
Our hospital needs critical seismic upgrades to the oldest buildings, some of which were built in the early 1970s, and other capital improvements so EvergreenHealth can continue to be there for our community in the event of a natural disaster or community crisis. In addition, these improvements are needed so EvergreenHealth will continue to provide the nationally recognized award-winning medical care currently provided to our community.
As demonstrated, in the following chart, Proposition 1 is structured to wrap around the existing 2005 Capital Improvement Bond Issue which will mature in 2023, allowing for these critical capital investments to be funded without an increase in the total tax rate to EvergreenHealth.
EvergreenHealth's estimated total rate is not projected to increase over the 2019 tax rate of $0.29/$1,000 of assessed valuation during the life of the Bonds which will be issued over the next four years.
Approving Proposition 1 will not increase your total tax rate for EvergreenHealth. However, according to the King County Assessor’s website additional changes to your future tax bill may occur due to changes in your property value, changes in state law, other Municipality’s levy rates, or changes in other voter approved ballot measures.
Click graph to enlarge.
EvergreenHealth’s tax rate for collection in 2019 was $.29/$1,000 of assessed valuation. This is comprised of $.20/$1,000 for the Regular Levy and $.09/$1,000 for the 2005 UTGO Bonds.
To calculate the impact of EvergreenHealth on your property taxes go to the King County Assessors website at https://blue.kingcounty.com/Assessor/eRealProperty/default.aspx to determine your property’s assessed valuation. Your taxes are based on the King County Assessor’s valuation of your property, not Zillow.
To determine your 2019 taxes for EvergreenHealth, use the 2018 valuation for collection in 2019. After determining your valuation divide it by 1,000 because the tax rate is based on dollars per thousand of assessed valuation. Then multiply that number by $.29.
Example for a $750,000 home: $750,000/1,000 = $750 x $.29 = $217.50 per year for 2019.
EvergreenHealth’s tax rate for collection in 2020 is estimated to be $.29/$1,000 of assessed valuation. This is comprised of $.19/$1,000 for the Regular Levy, $.07/$1,000 for the 2005 Bonds and $.03 for the Proposition 1 Bonds.
EvergreenHealth’s tax rate for collection in 2020 will be based on the King County Assessor’s valuation of your home in 2019 for collection in 2020. The Assessor is in the process of determining those valuations.
To calculate the impact of EvergreenHealth on your property taxes for 2020 estimate what you think the value of your home will be in 2020. In our example the valuation of our home goes up 10% from $750,000 to $825,000. (This will be based on the King County Assessor’s increase, not Zillow’s estimated increase.)
Example for a $825,000 home: $825,000/1,000 = $825 x $.29 = $239.25 per year for 2020.
Under the proposed structure the total tax rate for EvergreenHealth will not exceed $.29/$1,000 of assessed valuation over the life of Proposition 1.
You can also go to the King County Assessor’s Taxpayer Transparency Tool at https://localscape.spatialest.com/#kingcountyassessor/Tax.
Sources: Evergreen Health, King County Assessor and Office of Financial Management
The following zip codes represent EvergreenHealth’s service area within the hospital district.
Residents within these designated zip codes are eligible to vote on Proposition 1 and other EvergreenHealth initiatives.
How many votes are needed to approve the Proposition 1?
The State of Washington requires UTGO bond measures to meet two minimum thresholds to be considered approved:
If you have any additional questions about the Proposition 1, please submit them using our online form.