This year marks the 40th anniversary of Providence Seaside Hospital. But how did we get here? The Sisters of Providence have been part of providing health care on the North Coast for nearly 90 years.
A look back on how we got here:
On Dec. 7, 1856, the first Sisters of Providence docked in Astoria during their first trip to the Pacific Northwest. This was one of their last stops during their months-long journey from Montreal, Canada to Vancouver, Washington, 165 years ago.
Then 24 years later they were called to return, and in 1880, the sisters founded and operated St. Mary’s Hospital in Astoria for 90 years.
In 1964 the Union Health District was established under the provisions of Oregon Revised Statutes, Chapter 440, for the specific purpose of assuring the residents of the area that there would continue to be a hospital in the Seaside area. The Union Health District is a taxing district, which encompasses the area from the Astoria Country Club to the Tillamook County line and from the ocean to just east of Highway 53. The health district board in 1968 asked the taxpayers to pass a bond to provide funds to construct a new hospital at 725 S. Wahanna Road. In September of 1970, the new Seaside General Hospital was opened.
The Sisters of Providence were once again called to serve the community, this time in Seaside. In the spirit of working with others, Providence partnered with the Union Health District to assume the operations and management of Seaside General Hospital in 1981.
Providence first agreed to operate and lease the hospital from the Union Health District for 10 years. Just four months later, the lease agreement was extended to 30 years. And extended again to encompass our current agreement.
Because of the strong and successful relationship with the Union Health District, Providence has been able to grow and expand services throughout the North Coast. Over the years that support has helped increase quality health care in our community. Most recently the Union Health District provided key financial support, along with fundraising efforts of Providence Seaside Hospital Foundation, that helped fund the remodel and expansion of our emergency department.
Today we have more than 450 caregivers and an active and engaged service area advisory council that volunteers their time to assure the hospital stays committed to providing high quality and compassionate care to our community. We are honored to serve the communities throughout the North Coast and look forward to continuing this journey together.
Mike Antrim is communication manager for Providence Seaside Hospital.