Letter: Support proposition to keep hospital robust

Editor:

We have an opportunity when we vote in November to assure a crucial community institution, WhidbeyHealth Hospital, is able to continue to provide quality medical services we rely on.

The hospital, its ambulance service and its seven clinics are owned by us, the taxpayers. Yet only 5% of its operating revenue comes from property taxes.

Proposition #1 would increase our property taxes by an average of less than $15 per month. This is the first request for an increase in taxes in the hospital’s 57-year history.

The hospital needs new revenue to offset the demands made on it by the pandemic. They responded to new, urgent demands: testing stations, immunization clinics and excellent care for our neighbors who contacted Covid. At the same time, elective surgeries had to be curtailed and they lost that important source of revenue.

My family has used WhidbeyHealth many times over the decades for everything from a few stitches to emergency and ICU care for a family member whose life was saved there. I don’t want to think about what might have happened had we not had this facility in our community.

Please join me in supporting Proposition #1 to keep our hospital robust and able to provide the quality of care we need and deserve on Whidbey Island.

Janice O’Mahony

Freeland

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