Future of Snoqualmie Valley Hospital: May 30th public hearing discusses potential affiliation, merger

Future changes could be coming to the Snoqualmie Valley Hospital (SVH)  – including a new name and merging with a larger healthcare organization –  and the public has a chance to weigh in on Tuesday, May 30, 2017 at 6PM. 

Last fall the SVH District #4 Board of Commissioners and the Executive Management Team created a new strategic plan for the hospital, including a priority to pursue an affiliation with another healthcare organization, which would help meet these goals:

  • Ensure long-term viability of health services in the community
  • Meet the debt obligations of the District
  • Pursue shared services and economies of scale (e.g., administrative services, payer contracting, supply chain)
  • Spread risk in value-based contracting
  • Elevate brand presence
  • Increase SVH patient loyalty and community awareness of services
  • Grow outpatient service volumes and offerings
  • Grow scope of services and strengthen clinical integration:
  • Specialists
  • Telemedicine
  • Leverage Swing Bed resource
  • Increase community outreach and expand local Community Health Education offerings

According to Snoqualmie Valley Hospital CEO Tom Parker, they believe now is the time to pursue an affiliation as the hospital has improved its financial performance; is meeting its budget; is generating positive cash flow and has 90 days of unrestricted cash on hand.

He commented via email, “We believe now is the time to pursue an affiliation as opposed to the practice seen all too often of hospitals seeking affiliation only when finances are strained. The Board and Executive Team are proud of our accomplishments, including the building and operation of a new hospital. We plan to bring these strengths to a potential affiliate partner.”

For the past few months consulting and advisory firms have been helping with that potential affiliation process, including developing a ‘Request for Proposals’ (RFP) and its guiding principles and goals.

SVH is now ready to solicit input from community members about RFP. The public hearing happens Tuesday, May 30th at 6PM at Snoqualmie City Hall.   An overviews of the project, a timeline and the principles and goals will all be presented and then the public will be allowed to comment.

With the public hearing complete, the next step would be for the Board of Commissioners to approve the RFP, receiving and evaluating proposals and then finally selecting an affiliation partner.

According to Parker,  “The process of establishing an affiliate partner takes time and our expectation is that we are approximately a year out from having a definitive agreement in place.”

A future affiliation would NOT dissolve the hospital district. Parker explained the role of the district would change, though, transitioning from a focus on operating the hospital and its clinic to other ways to promote public health across the district.

 

 

 

 

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