Overlake Medical Center announced the $242 million Project futureCARE on Wednesday that will encompass construction of a new cancer care center and revamp care programs and services. CEO J. Michael Marsh and a group of physicians, cancer survivors, and donors demolished a wall of the former cancer center inside Overlake Hospital to symbolically “break ground” on the new center.
Planning for Project futureCARE began more than 10 years ago with the construction of Overlake’s south tower. The center is expected to be completed in 2017.
“The next phase that was always envisioned was another very significant campus development initiative that would enable us to really meet those needs of the people on the Eastside,” Marsh said.
Those needs and services include the construction of a new cancer center and childbirth center, an expanded behavioral health center, a new outpatient imaging center, increased operating room capacity, and a new east tower that will increase the number of amenities, including more medical surgical units.
“This project will enable us to not only bring cutting edge treatment to the patients we serve, but also care for their body, their mind, and their spirit while we do it,” Marsh said. “Perhaps more than any other service line, cancer is a disease that requires a team effort from a host of providers to really bring forward what’s best in caring for patients at multiple dimensions.”
Dr. Kristi Harrington, medical director of the Overlake Cancer Center, said that the onus of coordinating cancer treatment largely falls on the patient. One must make numerous appointments, speak with cancer and radiology specialists, travel to multiple clinics, see multiple doctors, and coordinate transportation and parking, all while being the most overwhelmed they have been probably in their entire life.
“Overlake’s new cancer center was designed to address all of these challenges to eliminate the unnecessary and added stress that patients feel today,” Dr. Harrington said. “We have always been able to provide top notch care, but the key is making it more patient-friendly and patient-centered to create this one-stop shop. In our new cancer center, doctors will go to the patients, and the patients will be at the center of the facility.”
Construction of the new center is estimated to be a $20 million project. CEO Marsh said the nonprofit hospital has given itself a goal of fundraising $10 million; $8.2 million has been raised thus far.
“We are heavily supported with philanthropic support. This is a hospital that was built for the community and by the community, and the fact that we’re able to support this particular project with 50 percent of Foundation dollars is a testament to the Eastside and the giving nature of residents on the Eastside,” Marsh said.
Top photo: From left, CEO J. Michael Marsh, cancer survivor Breeze Dahlberg, Overlake Cancer Center Medical Director Dr. Kristi Harrington, Director of Cancer Services Robyn La Fleur, Cancer Center fundraising committee co-chair Clodagh Ash, and Overlake Foundation board chair Jason Thompson prepare to break down the wall behind them. Overlake Medical Center’s new cancer center will be completed spring 2017. Photo by Marjorie Clark