Health care provider considering island
The Vashon Health Care District will begin formal discussions with Sea Mar Community Health Centers of Seattle about Sea Mar operating a primary care clinic at Sunrise Ridge on Vashon Island.
The district’s commissioners voted unanimously at their Aug. 19 meeting to authorize Superintendent Eric Jensen to enter into negotiations. Sea Mar executives have toured the Sunrise Ridge space and expressed interest in assuming operation of the clinic.
Any contractual agreement between the district and Sea Mar likely would spell out — among other things — district financial support for the clinic, services to be offered, and plans for the transition from Neighborcare Health, the clinic’s current operator, to Sea Mar.
“The district is grateful to Sea Mar for its interest in serving the primary care needs of our community,” said Tom Langland, president of the district’s board. “We’re optimistic we can reach an agreement that allows them, with district support, to provide the services islanders need and expect.”
Neighborcare, which has operated the clinic since 2016, informed the district earlier this year that it would not remain on Vashon beyond 2020. Under terms of an agreement with the district, Neighborcare will cease to operate the clinic on Oct. 31.
Sea Mar was founded in 1978. Its network of services in 12 Washington counties includes more than 90 medical, dental, and behavioral health clinics and a wide variety of nutritional, social, and educational services.
State receives aid for orcas
Last week, the Washington State Recreation and Conservation Office (RCO) received an award of more than $11 million in grants to 11 Chinook salmon habitat and hatchery projects from a new grant program under the Pacific Salmon Treaty supporting Southern Resident killer whale and Chinook salmon recovery.