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Living Center SPET Project

Thank you Teton County for Approving Proposition 10!

Since its construction in 1989, the Living Center has touched thousands of community members by providing high quality housing and care for seniors. Each year, the Living Center provides more than 17,000 days of resident care. It has been rated Five Stars by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid, the highest rating available.

Despite its achievements, the Living Center is currently unable to fully meet the needs of community families because of the limitations of its aging facility. It was built based on a medical model, made for the way that doctors and nurses round rather than the way residents live. A household model, outlined below, is the best practice in long-term care and skilled nursing and will be the model that we bring online in a new Living Center.


The new Living Center is an essential community need that must be addressed allowing aging individuals, including spouses, parents, and grandparents to remain in the community where they have family and a support system.

>> Community Spaces

The household model for senior living and care is a facility design based upon a home environment. This means living spaces and social places that offer areas for visiting with friends and family and for group activities. Replacing the current hospital-oriented facility with a home-based design will improve overall well-being and quality of life for the families we serve. A household model has the added benefit of enabling residents to be more easily grouped by care level.

>> Private Rooms & Baths

Private residential spaces with individual bathing facilities offer privacy and dignity. Nearly all of the current resident rooms are semi-private. Bathing facilities are communal. Semi-private rooms do not meet the needs of many families, who are then forced to relocate their family member to another city or state.

>> Memory Care Facility

Seniors with memory loss and dementia have specific safety and program needs that require a dedicated unit. The closest memory care centers are located 2-4 hours away.

>> Dedicated Short-Term Stay (Rehabilitation)

Many seniors need the services of the Living Center for short-term rehabilitation before they can safely return home. This is part of what makes the Living Center a dynamic environment. The current configuration, where rehab residents share rooms and community spaces with seniors who have dementia or other conditions associated with aging, does not optimally serve the needs of either population.

>> Room for Growth

The facility will continue to be a 60-bed facility, but this construction project will include shelled space for an additional 24 beds. These beds can be brought on line as future growth indicates.


Planning for a new Living Center includes:

    Living Center Art

  • The needs have been well established through a feasibility study and community focus groups.
  • An ideal location has been identified and is already owned by SJMC (northwest location on the current hospital campus). No zoning variances are required.
  • Design and cost estimates have been established. Because project planning is well underway, construction could begin in Spring 2018.
  • The project does not require ongoing support from the Town and County for operations. The project does not put additional pressure on community concerns such as workforce housing, parking or transportation.
  • The relocation of the Living Center integrates with the SJMC current master facility and strategic planning direction, allowing St. John's to optimize the current campus for the full range of future acute, residential, and outpatient needs of the community.
  • St. John's Medical Center and St. John's Hospital Foundation (SJHF) have committed resources to funding 50 percent of the $35 million project cost.
  • This project represents a major commitment to improving St. John’s ability to meet the community’s current and future health needs as our community ages.
  • SPET funding support will minimize the debt requirements to operate the Living Center, thereby allowing SJMC to continue its practice of significant reinvestment into health and medical capital, staff, clinical services, and other programs.



Land Acquisition Already Owned by SJMC
Construction Costs $27,000,000
Site Work, utilities/energy plant, FF&E $4,800,000
Contingency, reviews, inflation $3,200,000
TOTAL $35,000,000

St. John's Medical Center and St. John's Hospital Foundation have committed resources to funding 50% of the $35 million project cost.

The financing of the new Living Center assumes tax-exempt borrowing on the part of SJMC. Future ongoing operating and maintenance costs will be funded with the operating cash flow derived from patient charges for health and wellness services at St. John’s Medical Center. By minimizing debt structure on the facility, SJMC will be better positioned to absorb annual operating losses associated with long-term care.


Location & Campus Plan

The new Living Center will be constructed on the NW corner of the current St. John’s Medical Center campus at 555 E. Broadway, Jackson, WY.

The site for this planned improvement is owned by the Teton County Hospital District. No additional land acquisition is required. The property is zoned Public/Semi-Public and is subject to oversight by the Wyoming Department of Health.

>> Floor Plan

Life Happens Here

Housing seniors in our community is of the utmost importance. The Living Center not only helps keep families in the community and intact, it reflects our core community values. We are ensuring that the people who built our community and stewarded its growth have the respect and dignity they deserve as they age.

St. John's Medical Center Living Center's motto is "Life happens here!"

>> Music Therapy Programming

Living Center Music Therapy

Music has been proven to reduce anxiety and pain and improve overall quality of life, especially in elderly or terminally ill populations. Hilary Camino, a board certified music therapist, comes weekly to work with Living Center residents.

"When my daughter sings for my mother, it is like my mother wakes up. Her face lights up and she suddenly totally present, even if she doesn't - or can't - say anything."- Daughter of a Living Center Resident

Watch a video from the Jackson Hole News & Guide about the music therapy program.

>> Intergenerational Activities

At the Living Center, we offer a wide range of intergenerational activities from hobbies like knitting to one-to-one mentoring to group activities like singing.

As our community ages, we realize the potential in linking our community’s youth and seniors through intergenerational programs. Important benefits for Living Center residents include better mood, more social engagement, and greater connection to the community.

"We teach about living, about aging, about dementia, about dying. And we teach people of all ages about these things."-Pat Weber, 28 Year Nursing Home Administrator

>> TimeSlips Storytelling Groups

TimeSlips is a collaborative storytelling effort by a group of people with memory loss, with the goal of helping improve the quality of life of persons by using creative expression.