Foundation’s goal: $30 million for Aspen hospital

Eben Harrell
Special to The Aspen Times

The Aspen Valley Medical Foundation announced plans Monday to raise $30 million for improvements at Aspen Valley Hospital.

Officials at the foundation, which has had a long-standing relationship with the hospital since its conception 30 years ago, said they hope this pledge will help AVH maintain its status as a “a truly world-class hospital.”

The announcement came in a response to a report from HLM Consulting, a health-care architecture firm based in Denver. The consultants suggested how the 25-year-old hospital should expand to meet growth in the community and in the health-care industry.

The most immediate need addressed, officials said, will be developing new infrastructure. Those plans will include not only the acquisition of equipment but also the expansion of the hospital site itself into a “state-of-the-art medical center.”

“The hospital has done a great job so far at matching the evolution of the medical industry,” said John Schied, hospital project manager. “But now we are at capacity. Business has grown, the hospital needs to expand; this money meets that reality.”

The initial goal for the hospital is the construction of a new medical record center, which will create space to renovate the currently inundated cardiology clinic. The hospital district board will go before the City Council as early as mid-July to begin seeking approval for the first remodeling phase.

Along with responding to immediate needs, the campaign will also raise money for future projects. Kris Marsh, the foundation’s executive director, said the money is part of a long-term commitment to give the hospital the capacity to match medical advancements.

“This commitment to advancement means grants not only for new technology but for program and training development as well,” Marsh said. “The foundation is committed to a two-pronged approach to medicine and understanding the human side. Our definition of health is more than just medical.”