New FQHC Clinic in Central Washington Funded by Tax-exempt Bonds
In 2022, a $24.6 million tax exempt bond issue helped pay for the construction of a new outpatient clinic in East Wenatchee, Washington which is owned and operated by Columbia Valley Community Health (“CVCH”). The two-story clinic is approximately 23,400 square feet and provides services such as medical, integrated behavioral health medicine, dental, and pharmacy. The clinic contains 24 medical exam rooms, eight dental operatory rooms and space for clinical administration. Tax exempt bond proceeds were also used to refinance and reduce interest cost for their Washington Health Care Facilities Authority Series 2017 Revenue Bond.
CVCH is a Federally Qualified Health Center (“FQHC”) that focuses on operating a comprehensive family-oriented health care center, and providing medical and health-related services to migrant and seasonal farm workers and the medically underserved population in Chelan and Douglas Counties of Washington. CVCH operates six clinics in Wenatchee, two clinics in East Wenatchee and one clinic in Chelan. In 2022, CVCH had 88,674 medical, 27,498 dental, 23,680 behavioral and 4,354 substance use encounters.
By issuing tax exempt bonds through the Washington Health Care Facilities Authority to finance this project, CVCH will reduce its interest expense over the term of the loan by approximately $1,336,736. In 2020 78% of CVCH patients were at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL). CVCH wrote off charges of $2,083,300 for sliding fee discounts based on FPL which considers household income and family size. The estimated financial benefits resulting from financing this project through the Authority, as opposed to obtaining financing other than through the Authority, is used to provide additional access to CVCH’s patients and remove or reduce financial barriers to care for low-income patients.
Donna Murr, Executive Director
Washington Health Care Facilities Authority