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Expansion plans: Silverton Health Foundation launches fundraising campaign

In this conceptual schematic the tan area is the current Legacy Silverton Medical Center with the orange representing the proposed imaging services and emergency room area with helicopter landing pad, and the blue a new outpatient center. The illustration was presented at the fund raising kick-off luncheon May 17. The project is in the conceptual stage; there is no timeline for construction or completion. Courtesy Silverton Health Foundation

By Paula Mabry

In July, Silverton will have been home to a hospital for 100 years. In an effort to create “a legacy of health for the next 100 years” the Silverton Health Foundation launched a $1 million fundraising campaign May 17 to support medical center expansion plans.

The goal, foundation director Randy Stockdale explained to the audience of business and community leaders at the Mount Angel Festhalle, is to raise $1 million locally. It will be matched by Legacy, he added.

Silverton Health joined the Legacy system in June 2016, becoming the seventh of Legacy Health’s medical centers and the only one in Marion County. 

At the time, Legacy Silverton Medical Center President Sarah Fronza said while the name had changed, the vision, mission and dedication to Silverton and the surrounding communities would remain the same. 

At the luncheon, Fronza noted the Legacy affiliation “allowed us to continue to have a community hospital.”

The Silverton Health Foundation Board of Trustees, in considering the goals and expansion plans, came together to personally pledge $150,000 to the campaign. The Silverton Health Auxiliary has promised an additional $40,000.

Fronza and Dr. Julian Uselman, vice president of Silverton Medical Center Medical Staff, presented a brief history of medicine during the early days of the hospital – including the saddlebag and medical kit of its first doctor complete with the medications of the day: whiskey, nitrate, glycerin and carbolic acid. Those limited resources pointed up how much has changed.

Then they shared the vision for the future: new emergency and imaging facilities, a roof top landing pad for helicopters, and an outpatient center with underground parking. Total costs and timelines were not presented as the plans are in an early conceptual stage.

When it took over, Legacy pledged to invest $60 million into ongoing and growing programs and services.

Former Silverton Health Foundation board treasurer Mark Dickman summed up the campaign for the audience.

“It’s the same place. It’s the same facility. It’s the same folks. It’s our hospital… We want to send a clear message. We care about this hospital. We are unique. We are Silverton. We want to take care of this place,” he said. 

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