|Hospital approves 2011 budget|
|Written by Chris Lee|
East Phillips County Hospital District (EPCHD) board members approved the 2011 proposed budget during their meeting Tuesday, Nov. 23.
EPCHD board members held a special meeting Monday, Nov. 22 to discuss the budget. Department managers throughout the hospital were contacted prior to the budget deadline to give their input.
The budget reflects a net income of $111,000 for 2011.
Following budget approval, board members and MMH administrator John Ayoub expressed their appreciation for the time and effort CFO Greg Was put into the budget process.
“I think the results are accurate, if not a little conservative, which is what we were shooting for,” Ayoub said. The administrator also said incorporating a new accountant helped out quite a bit.
Administrator reports activity
Ayoub reported physician recruitment continues and there has been contact with two doctors recently. One candidate visited the hospital, and a phone interview was conducted with another.
After discussion with the medical staff, it was decided between both the candidates and the hospital that Holyoke probably wouldn’t be a good fit. As a result, the process of looking for a doctor will continue.
In an effort to save money, equipment for a fiber connection was purchased at less than the budgeted amount. The purchase will help establish and strengthen the firewall to protect information both entering and leaving the hospital.
The administrator said staff was working on the biannual inventory check last week. He praised all the departments and those leading the effort.
Ayoub said a successful meeting with the Phillips County Emergency Medical System council was held at MMH. Those attending were the administrators and EMS directors from both MMH and Haxtun Hospital, as well as a county commissioner and the county administrator.
From that meeting came a change in funding for new ambulances in the future. Instead of each district paying $3,000, they will pay $4,000, and the county will bump up to $8,000 from $7,000 to help fund new ambulances.
The administrator finished by updating board members that some new positions have been filled at the hospital within the dietary and housekeeping departments.
Dr. Dennis Jelden, medical chief of staff, visited with board members during last Tuesday’s meeting. He addressed the status of the newly implemented Electronic Medical Records (EMRs). Jelden agreed it will take time for everyone to get acclimated with the new system but feels in the long run it will make things easier.
He said coding seems to be something that has and will take some time to get used to.
Jelden said the EMRs are very helpful when it comes to the prescription part of dealing with patients.
Ayoub noted it will take somewhere around 8-12 months for staff to see the number of patients they were used to prior to the implementation. He also noted the quality of care has never diminished, just the volume of patients that are able to be seen.
“I would contend that once Dr. Jelden gets proficient with the codes or when we get him some more help to do the coding, that he’ll be able to see more patients than he was seeing when we were just doing paper-based records,” Ayoub said.
“It’s my hope and goal that we will be more proficient,” he added.
Board member Steve Deaver questioned the progress of a new doctor, if hired, and the level of experience with the medical records they would have. Ayoub said many residents are using EMRs and have “grown up” with it. Any other doctors using a different system would be up to pace as the codes are all similar.
Committee reports presented
Board member Sheryl Farnsworth reported on the community linkages committee and mentioned they would like to take another look at how the committee is reaching out to the public.
Board members agreed to draft a series of bullet points to take out to community organizations. These would help the committee determine and move forward with organizational goals of reaching out to the public.
“It will give us not only a chance to reach out on behalf of the board to communicate with the community, it also gives us the opportunity to bring that information back to have some good interchange amongst ourselves,” board member Gary Rahe said.
Peggi Pearson updated board members on the quality committee and noted readmissions will be something that will be added to the balanced scorecard for 2011. She also said a project dealing with discharge planning will be something the committee will work on.
Board members approved the proposed strategy map for the 2011 balanced scorecard. Pearson said most of the financial pieces stayed the same and a clinic satisfaction survey will be added for 2011.
Pearson also noted the committee plans to meet with departmental managers to hear updates on the quality improvement indicators once a year.
Credentialing was approved for Gary Bauerle, radiology; Lorin Brandon, podiatry; Daniel Possehn, radiology; David Reed, family practice w/OB and C-sections; Warren Tripp, ophthalmology; Delane Wycoff, pathology; Scott Pace, allergy and immunology; Gary Rath, cardiology; James Wolach, urology; and Doreen Pecar, CRNA.
In other business Nov. 23, board members:
—held a 22-minute executive session for negotiations.
—noted the next board meeting will be held Tuesday, Dec. 28.