2001 - 2010 — Adding Critical Services

Increasing services, larger patient volumes and a growing region brought Kadlec’s need to expand during the 2000s to the forefront. When the four-story building was constructed in 1969, fewer than 300 people were working at Kadlec. By 2000, that number had grown to more than 700.

In early 2000, Kadlec announced a 85-000 square foot expansion/remodel to include a new Intensive Care Unit (doubling in size), a Short Stay Unit, a new Emergency Department, 19 new private patient rooms, a support services building, a new main entrance and lobby, and a sixth operating room. The project was completed in 2002.

Cardiac Care Begins at Kadlec 


Rand Wortman, Kadlec CEO at the ribbon-cutting of the heart program.

A significant step in care for the region began in 2001 with the start of open heart surgery services at Kadlec. In addition to surgery, heart care included diagnostic cardiac catheterization, interventional cardiology including stents and angioplasty, and rehabilitation. A second cath lab was opened in 2002 and a third in 2005, which also included an MRI suite.

The need for speed in diagnosing and treating a heart attack led Kadlec to create a Chest Pain Center—the first nationally accredited chest pain center in the Northwest. It brought together the skills and resources of the area’s emergency personnel in the field, Kadlec’s Emergency Department, its heart care team and its hospitalists. The Chest Pain Center has been reaccredited every three years since 2004 achieving higher standards of care with each cycle. The Kadlec Chest Pain Center is also PCI certified with the emergency ability to treat acute cardiac events using balloon angioplasty, and the only hospital in the area able to perform open heart surgery.


2002 Ribbon-cutting of expansion project.

Health care took another step forward with the opening of a new all-digital Outpatient Imaging Center across from the Kadlec campus in 2002. The comprehensive center is equipped with advanced imaging technology providing physicians sophisticated tools to diagnose and treat disease, and offers patients numerous imaging services in one location including CT/PET, MRI, mammography, ultrasound, CT, DEXA and digital radiography.

Other Areas of Growth

At the Outpatient Imaging Center, an Advanced Breast Care Center was created, which offers a combination of prompt care, the most sophisticated breast imaging equipment and clinical expertise. Services include 3D digital mammography, breast ultrasound, breast MRI, ultrasound-guided needle biopsy, stereotactic core biopsy and a Patient Information Library.


Outpatient Imaging Center opened in 2002

In 2002, Kadlec also introduced a new medical specialty to the Tri-Cities with the addition of two full-time intensivists, offering 24/7 physician coverage for patients in the Intensive Care Unit. In 2003, adult hospitalists were added to the medical floors and in 2006, pediatric hospitalists were added to the pediatric floor, again the first to do so in the region. Hospitalists specialize in around-the-clock care for hospitalized patients.

The Garden, offering a beautiful space for quiet meditation and reflection opened in the early 2000s. Located off the Vineyard Lobby of the hospital, it features private places to sit, a water feature and beautiful landscaping.

Kadlec added genetic counseling services in 2005.

Between 2000 and 2005, Kadlec’s admissions were up 60 percent, outpatient visits doubled and inpatients from outside Benton and Franklin Counties more than doubled.

The opening of Columbia Basin College’s $13.2 million Health Science Center in Richland was celebrated in 2006 allowing CBC to nearly double the size of its nursing program and build up programs including surgery technicians and radiological sciences. Kadlec donated $2 million toward the project.

Also in 2006, Kadlec announced its partnership with Seattle Children’s Hospital to help strengthen care for the region’s pediatric patients. In 2007, the collaboration was expanded to include the NICU.

Kadlec formalized its mission to deliver compassionate care to patients and families by becoming a member of the Planetree Alliance, an international organization, helps hospitals create patient-centered care in a healing environment. Planetree’s approach encourages healing in all dimensions— mental, emotional, spiritual and social as well as physical. It seeks to maximize health care outcomes by integrating optimal medical therapies.

Another Major Expansion Begins

Ground was broken in 2006 for Kadlec’s River Pavilion. The $70-plus million, six-story project included a 36-bed Clinic Decision Unit, 10 new operating rooms plus a Post-Anesthesia Care Unit, a 28-bed Intermediate Care Unit and more. It was built with the flexibility to go as high as 10-stories as demand dictates.

Even before the new building was occupied, a fund raising campaign was undertaken by Kadlec Foundation to build a pediatric center on the River Pavilion’s fifth floor. Over $7 million was raised within the community create the Don & Lori Watts Pediatric Center, which opened in 2009.

System Growth

To meet the ever-growing need for physicians, Kadlec Clinic was created. It includes physicians offering primary and specialty care located throughout the community. By 2009, Kadlec Clinic included 12 locations and over 50 providers. As a part of Kadlec Health System, one of Kadlec Clinic’s strengths is the ability to communicate between doctors, clinics and with Kadlec Regional Medical Center, creating important collaborative and coordinated care patients.

Kadlec Neuroscience Center was created in 2008 to bring a comprehensive team of neurosurgeons, neurologists, pain management specialists, and physiatrists to the region. The extensive experience and subspecialty training of the physicians provides a wide range of services to treat and diagnose conditions related to the brain, spine, spinal cord, and peripheral nervous system.