Officials at EvergreenHealth Monroe had hoped to bring back the maternity ward to the medical center using funds from a levy measure on last Tuesday’s special election ballot.
But with the measure failing by nearly 15 percentage points, those plans are now on hold. The results won’t be certified until Friday, but it’s unlikely to gain enough votes to be approved.
The Snohomish County levy measure had 43% of the vote on Friday afternoon. Another EvergreenHealth measure, for a bond for the Kirkland medical center, was also failing.
At EvergreenHealth Monroe, the hospital planned to use $4 million raised annually for six years to reopen its maternity ward, which has been shuttered for eight years. It would have been the only maternity ward from Monroe to Wenatchee. It also planned to use the funds to upgrade equipment and transition to an electronic medical-record system.
The hospital will still pay for new MRI and CT machines this year. Both scanners are about 20 years old and have to be replaced. The electronic medical-record plan will still be completed, but at a later time, depending on funding, the hospital said.
The measure for a $345 million bond for EvergreenHealth Medical Center in Kirkland was also failing Friday, with a 58% approval rate among 59,173 votes. The number of votes surpassed the required turnout — 56,283 voters — but didn’t reach the minimum approval rate of 60% needed for a bond to pass.
The funding would have paid for seismic upgrades, a new critical-care unit and an updated maternity center.
In a joint statement, the leaders of both hospitals said they were grateful to have heard stories from patients who voiced appreciation for the care they received at the medical centers.
“Stories like these, and your collective commitment to our care and service, further our dedication to achieve our mission,” EvergreenHealth CEO Amy Beiter and EvergreenHealth Monroe Chief Administrative Officer Renee Jensen said. “In this spirit, we will continue to work with our boards to assess next steps and remain dedicated to seeing the goals and projects outlined in our campaigns come to fruition.”
Last week, voters approved a $120 million levy for the Lake Washington School District to address school overcrowding. The six-year levy will pay for new classrooms at five schools, expanded common areas and gym space at Lake Washington High School, new exterior cameras at elementary schools and remodeled entryways.
Homeowners will pay between 25 to 29 cents per $1,000 of assessed value.