With the encouragement of the doctors in attendance the board voted to enter into a contract to provide certain mental health services to geriatric patients. The vote in last Thursday's board meeting was unanimous, as Chief of Staff Dr. Rick Miles said he and others had expressed interest in the program and were willing to refer patients to it for treatment of depression. The literature provided with the proposal lists pharmacological as well as counseling treatment options as part of the program. The administration is reporting a "substantial profit," is anticipated from the program, which they will pay $5,000 a month for. Board Attorney Jeff Hoover brought to the attention of the board that they were looking at a minimum of $45,000 in payments whether the programs is profitable or not, given the terms of the contract. There was no action on the proposal that the hospital move forward with expansion planning. The board opted to wait until the next meeting after the management audit would be delivered. Miles had questioned why none of the previous expansion plans already drawn up were not sufficient. CEO Gary DelForge said the previous plans were either not viable or were missing. During his staff report Miles pointed out that they felt the number of beds in the intensive care unit of the hospital is insufficient. The issue of the time patients spend in hospital beds was raised by Jeff Buckley, the Alliant liaison for the board. Buckley said there was a very serious impact on the bottom line for the hospital if the average stay goes over 4 days because of the provisions of the hospital's acute care status with Medicare. Miles said that if the administration would keep the staff informed about the length of stay averages they would work to keep them in line. He added that it is hard sometimes to explain to patients why they have to be transferred to another hospital or go home before the patient is ready to.
The facility is limited by their status as an acute care facility to short-term stays or they face a serious reduction in the amount of money paid by the hospital by the Medicare and Medicaid programs.
In other financial considerations CFO Ken Kimsal asked the board to approve this year's tax rate, which he said was the same as the previous year's. The rates were set at 6.5 percent per $100 of valuation for real estate and 9.2 percent for personal property. Along with the tax rate Kimsal delivered the financial report for the previous month. August was the second month in a row for the hospital to show more money coming in that going out. For the month the books closed with a positive $102,055 which brings the year to date figures to $238,491in the black. Both months showed a positive result in the operations side with $92,967 more paid in than the hospital spent to provide services. The previous month the hospital finished $120,592 to the good in that same category. The board voted to approve the expenditure of $15,000 for new automatic doors for the ambulance entrance to the emergency room. Mike Egnew, the hospital's chief of maintenance told the board that they have been working for some years to keep the old doors working but they were reaching the point when the repair would not be possible.
The Times Journal is a weekly newspaper issued on Thursdays. It was first published on October 13, 1949, by Andrew J. and Terry Norfleet.
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120 Wilson St.
Russell Springs KY 42642
Russell County News is a weekly newspaper issued on Saturdays, and is mailed free to every address in Russell County, Ky. It was first published on February 1, 1913.
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Jamestown KY 42629