Councilwoman named to Harborview board

January 2, 2009

By Jim Feehan

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Newcastle City Councilwoman Lisa Jensen has been named to the board of trustees at Harborview Medical Center. 

Jensen was nominated by King County Councilman Reagan Dunn and confirmed by the 13-member King County Council. Dunn asked Jensen if she would be interested in the board position and he forwarded her name to the King County Council for confirmation, she said. 

The board has one member from each of the nine King County Council districts, plus four at-large members.

“I’m honored to be serving on Harborview’s board,” Jensen said. “I’ve always had an interest in health care.”

Prior to her election to the City Council, Jensen worked as a consultant for Lawson Software, an international software company with several customers in the health care industry.

Harborview is managed by the University of Washington and is owned by King County. Harborview has an annual operating budget of $690 million. Board members meet monthly and the position is unpaid. Members serve four-year terms.

Harborview has the only Level I adult and pediatric trauma center in the state, and serves as disaster control center for King County. Harborview is a nationally recognized patient-care, teaching and research hospital.

The UW has been ranked by U.S. News & World Report as the top medical school for 15 consecutive years in training primary-care physicians.

Its academic programs in family medicine and rural health care have ranked No. 1 for 17 years, according to the news magazine.

In 2009, board members will consider adding an eye institute and a vascular surgery center, Jensen said.

“One of the biggest challenges for us in 2009 will be cuts to the state budget, reducing the number of people who are insured, which means more people will show up in the emergency room at Harborview,” she said.

John Sothern, a board member for 11 years, said Jensen brings a wealth of experience and business acumen to the board.

“She’s demonstrated a great deal of knowledge of finances, which has helped,” Sothern said.

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