Contributed photo
                                The Life Care Center of the San Juan Islands was a live-in facility, with 24-hour nursing, which closed in November 2017.

Contributed photo The Life Care Center of the San Juan Islands was a live-in facility, with 24-hour nursing, which closed in November 2017.

Donate to return long-term senior care to San Juan Island

  • Tue Dec 18th, 2018 1:30am
  • Life

Submitted by Community Long-Term Care Options Task Force

To address the crisis created by the closure of the Life Care Center of the San Juan Islands, the Community Long-Term Options Task Force was created.

The task force is asking for donations and looking for passionate people who have shared their concerns about the lack of long-term care options in the county and are ready to make a new vision of health care a reality.

The task force members have identified important and beneficial options for the community since the Life Care Center closed in November 2017. These options include micro-nursing homes based off of the Green House Project model; affordable housing for low-income seniors; tele-health and social work programs; and home health and home care alternatives. To continue to the next phase of the development, a feasibility study is required.

The study will outline the following:

• The magnitude and extent of long-term care service needs on each island and identify programs to address the needs and currently available reimbursements.

• Expected capital, start-up and staffing requirements and analysis of the costs and revenues associated with each proposed program.

• Potential governance and organizational options for the program development.

The same company that was involved with the planning for the hospital, Health Facilities Planning and Development, has been approached to create the study for development of a sustainable community-based long-term care delivery system in the county. The expected cost of this study is approximately $50,000. This study is vital in the efforts to restore and expand crucial medical facilities and programs to the county.

The Inter Island Healthcare Foundation has agreed to act as the financial agent for the fundraising efforts. These efforts will not only be used for the initial feasibility study but will eventually expand into expected construction and operating costs associated with the finalized plans. The foundation initially started as the Inter Island Medical Center Corporation in 1955 and ultimately morphed into its current form in 1991 becoming the Inter Island Healthcare Foundation.

San Juan County has the opportunity to create and mold services to this unique community. Now is the time to push forward toward these goals. With an aging population, the needs continue to grow. This feasibility study will help gather crucial data and information necessary to create this new model of health care. The efforts begin on a grassroots platform, designed to achieve the initial goal of $50,000.

Those with specific question or concerns, can email info@interislandhealthcare.org or call Evan Perrollaz at 360-378-7144 at the Village at the Harbour. You can also visit interislandhealthcare.org for further information or to donate.

The Community Long-Term Care Options Task Force is comprised of Perrollaz, Janice Fisher, Beth Williams-Geiger, Beth Helstien, Deanna Osborne, Kyle Davies, Kathryn Clary, Julia Thompson, Dennis King, Pamela Hutchins and Carrie Unpingco.