Letter: The hospital is a vital community resource

Editor,

It is so important that we keep, maintain and upgrade our local Whidbey Island hospital. Every time, my husband and I have needed care at WhidbeyHealth, we have had excellent service. We are greeted by a friendly person and directed to our destination. Each time we have had caring, competent medical personnel who are upbeat, personable, knowledgeable and provide excellent medical intervention.

We have profited from a wide variety of medical services including colonoscopy, mammograms, CT scans, ultrasound, emergency care. Most recently, my husband had a bad bike accident and was treated with very effectively and professionally.

We get a chance to support this local resource under Proposition #1. Our Whidbey Island Public Hospital was founded in 1964 and includes ambulance service and seven clinics, all owned by the taxpayers of Whidbey Island.

Proposition #1 will increase our property tax from .0782 to .50 per thousand dollars of assessed home value. This is less than the minimum allowed of .68 and increases our cost by approximately $14/month (about one plain cheese pizza). This proposition is projected to add $6 million to WhidbeyHealth’s $115 million annual budget. The priorities for these additional revenues will be: 1) addressing additional staffing needs, 2) retaining existing staff by offering a living wage (especially for support and clerical staff), 3) focusing on recruiting additional providers and 4) improving/replacing technology and communication systems.

We must keep and improve our Whidbey Island Health system.

Please join me in voting “yes” on Proposition # 1 to improve and upgrade our island hospital.

Cynthia Shelton

Langley

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