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Ferns Background History


The first Kirkland hospital opened in 1914 with a capacity of 24 patients. In the late 1940s a new facility was built, located across the street from the Kirkland Public Library on the property now occupied by the Heathman Hotel.  


The citizens of the Kirkland, Bothell, and Redmond area formed King County Public Hospital District #2 in 1968 in order to build a new hospital in 1972 to replace the old Kirkland Hospital. ACEP (American College of Emergency Physicians) had been formed only 3 years earlier, and at the time there were only two residencies in Emergency Medicine in the country.  


Dr. David Asmussen, later an Obstetrician at Evergreen, was the first Medical Director of the Kirkland Emergency Department (ED).  Only 5 full-time physicians were needed to cover the 4-bed unit, working 24-hour shifts and sometimes seeing less than 15 patients per day.

Kirkland Avenue 1930
Seattle Medic One, Early Years

Dr. Charles Pilcher, an emergency physician at Evergreen since 1973, became Medical Director of the Emergency Department in 1978 and served in that capacity until 2003. During this time, Dr. Pilcher oversaw significant growth and the establishment of many new programs.


The hospital agreed to sponsor the first hospital-based paramedic program in King County in 1979, beginning with a crew of 8 paramedics trained by Dr. Copass's team at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle. Dr. Pilcher also helped found the very successful hospitalist program at Evergreen.


The number of patients served rose steadily and the ED underwent a number of expansions until it reached 17 beds in 1994, then added a “fast track” unit in 1999. The current 47 bed emergency department was constructed at EvergreenHealth Kirkland in 2007.


Today, the EvergeenHealth Medical Center in Kirkland is a top-tier, busy, level 3 trauma center and stroke center, with neuro-interventional capability, a 24-hour cardiac cath lab, and a wide range of subspecialists on-call 24/7.

In 2001, the emergency physicians of Evergreen became Evergreen Emergency Services, Inc (EES). Since that time, EES has grown steadily, staffing the Kirkland ED and expanding into new locations and service lines. The Redmond free-standing emergency department was built in 2011. EES partnered with EvergreenHealth to open and staff our first Urgent Care in Redmond in 2013, and we now have 8 physical Urgent Care locations and with a growing Telehealth Urgent Care line. 


Monroe’s community hospital was acquired by EvergreenHealth in 2015, with EES staffing all 3 EDs. We have built a successful ED physician assistant program and EES physicians serve as EMS medical directors in both King and Snohomish counties. In 2019 East Research Associates was founded, partnering with EES to participate in clinical studies evaluating new diagnostics and therapeutics to benefit patients everywhere.


EES now employs 44 Board Certified physicians and 49 advance practice clinicians, serving 121,000 patients a year at 11 locations. Due to our exceptional quality of care, partnership with EvergreenHealth, independent physician leadership, and geographic location, EES has been able to recruit and retain the best and brightest medical clinicians and staff.


We look forward to delivering exceptional, compassionate, Emergency and Urgent Care to our patients for years to come.

EvergreenHealth Medical Center Kirkland, Washington
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