Capital Accounting

Marquam HillOHSU has a significant investment of capital assets, such as land, buildings, and fixed and moveable equipment, which are used in the primary missions of health care, education, and research.




Kathy Huber - Accounting Manager 503-494-2028
Mike Olson - Capital Accounting Supervisor 503-494-2072
Glenda Verus - Accountant II
Hospital/ITG/CIP/Foundation Capital Purchases,
Inventories, Surplus, Vehicles DMV/DEQ
David Newton - Accountant II
University Capital Purchases, Inventories, Surplus;
Projects Module; RWO Billings
Adam Crowell - Accountant II
University Asset Reconciliations; Asset Journal
Entries/FDN Transfers; Library; Capital Leases
Yuan Chi - Accountant II
PA Expense Projects; Departmental Billings;
Expense Reclassifications


A capital asset is defined as property (tangible and intangible) owned, leased under a capital lease, controlled, or possessed by the institution meeting the following conditions:

  • Dollar cost of at least $10,000 for a building improvement –this threshold also covers all building component assets that operate as an integral part of the building (i.e. HVAC).
  • Dollar cost of at least $3,000 for movable and other fixed equipment (per base unit)
  • Useful life of more than ONE year
  • And not consumed in the normal course of business

Assets not meeting the definition of a capital asset should be expensed in the period the costs are incurred.



  • Capital assets must be purchased through the OHSU Oracle requisitioning/purchasing process.
  • Purchasing cards and disbursements may NOT be used to purchase capital assets.


  • The institution discourages the purchase of equipment through leasing arrangements.
  • University capital leases require pre-approval by the Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. Hospital capital leases require pre-approval by Hospital Financial Services.

  • If approved, the Contracts Department will negotiate all leases and lease/purchase agreements.


In order to safeguard OHSU's assets and satisfy federal and other external auditors, verification of equipment use, condition, and availability is completed at least every two years during an OHSU-wide inventory process. The inventory process is a joint effort between the acquiring department and Capital Accounting.


Equipment that is no longer needed must be disposed of in one of the following manners:

  • Transfer or sale to another OHSU department
  • Relinquishment to another institution outside OHSU
  • Loans between institutions
  • Trade-ins
  • Surplus
  • Loss or theft
  • Damaged or destroyed

Details on processing assets in each of the above cases are found in the Capital Accounting Guidelines.


Most assets are depreciated using the straight-line method. For financial statement purposes, depreciation expense is recognized at the hospital or university level, rather than by department or cost center.

For cost studies, such as the Hospital's Medicare Cost Report and the University's Facilities & Administrative rate, depreciation is calculated at the cost center level (e.g. physical location or budget account). Where there is more than one budget account funding a piece of equipment, depreciation is calculated separately for each account.


View Capital Accounting related posts on the Finance Matter$ blog.


Do you have more questions about Capital Accounting? Please visit our  Capital Accounting How Do I…?  page.

Find the form, guidelines, or policy you're looking for in our Capital Accounting Forms & Policies section.