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Douglas County Physician Group Speaks About Implications of Roseburg School Bond

8:28 PM · May 4, 2022

The following is a letter from DCIPA, a Douglas County physicians group, on the implications to the healthcare community of the upcoming Roseburg School Bond. "Neighbors, Friends, and Colleagues: DCIPA, the physicians of Douglas County, encourages you to vote in favor of the upcoming Roseburg School Bond measure, 10-187 on the May 17th ballot. Despite the district’s consistent and excellent maintenance of our school buildings, the infrastructure and internal workings of the buildings are flawed and in desperate need of modernization. DCIPA adamantly supports this bond measure for several reasons. First and foremost, our community struggles to attract new physicians, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, physical therapists, behavioral health care workers, registered nurses, and many other health care professionals. We need these professionals who help maintain the health of each person living in our community. Simply put, to attract these people and keep the great providers we have working in our area, we need quality schools. New providers almost always receive their training in areas outside Douglas County. Almost without fail, the question “How are the schools?” is at the top of the list of their concerns when considering a move to Roseburg. Answering that question can be difficult. Although our teachers and staff perform outstanding work, our test scores are well within acceptable ranges, and our students excel in and out of the classroom, a tour of local schools often leaves these potential new residents unconvinced that their children can receive a high-quality education here. Perspective recruits do not see the positives, only the aging and outdated buildings, lack of space, and inadequacies that are visible. Second, the average age of our schools is 73 years old, and most have not had any major upgrades for decades. This presents safety and security concerns and well as health concerns for our children that were not an issue when the buildings were designed. Medical research asserts that air quality should be a priority for new buildings. Modern HVAC systems should be a requirement for all school buildings if we are considering the health of our children. However, as we understand it, very few buildings in our school district are woefully failing when it comes to air quality. This is unacceptable. Third, safe and secure entryways are needed for our children’s protection. While we are a small, tight-knit community, our schools reside right off the I-5 corridor. It is vastly important we protect our children by limiting who may enter our school grounds, and who can enter our buildings. This too is a health concern that needs to be addressed. Last, a bond measure is the only way our school districts can pay for major construction projects needed to upgrade our existing schools. The revenue from this bond can ONLY be used to pay for these projects and cannot be used for operating costs, salaries, retirement benefits or other expenses. As physicians we visualize this bond as a benefit to the entire community and especially to the community’s health. Our community depends on improving its schools to become the place we want to live in the future. Our schools are a key to the long-term success and viability of the place we all want to preserve and enjoy. We love our community and now have an opportunity to give back in a way that helps to ensure a bright future for everyone. We need this bond. Please consider voting in favor of it on our upcoming ballot. It is up to all of us. Mike Krnacik, MD, PhD, Chairman DCIPA Inc. Board of Directors Bart Bruns, MD, CEO DCIPA, Inc."