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by Brenda Grose
A variety of good news topics was the takeaway from the Ringgold County Hospital (RCH) and Mount Ayr Medical Clinic (MAMC) regular monthly board of trustees meeting held, Monday, November 18.
Starting with a look at the financial picture, CFO Missy Walter presented a positive $180,000 net profit for the month of October.
Busy floor activity and surgeries contributed to month end’s number and a year-to-date profit of $302,000. Walter reported 55 inpatient days for October, nearly double from September’s count, 10 more acute and observation days than recorded for September and 19 outpatient surgeries performed, also exceeding budgeted numbers.
On the clinic side, it was noted that MAMC had increased patient volume by approximately 7 percent, in large part due to the transfer of Dr. Dwain Crain’s patients to MAMC and the partnering of obstetrical care between Dr. Tami Fahnlander, DO, Unity Point, OB/GYN Clinic and Dr. Karen Krogstad, MD, New Life Family Medicine and MAMC providers Dr. Katie Wilcox, DO and Erin Leonard, AARNP.
The 340B pharmacy program added $63,000 in revenue for October and depreciation added back $214,000 to the bottom line.
Along with increases in revenue, RCH administrator Gordon Winkler reported a new savings opportunity as part of the Mercy Network. Mercy Network was able to obtain an expanded and renegotiated agreement with an electronic resource for Up- to-Date medication information. RCH is now able to provide the Up-to-Date drug medication information product for all providers and staff at no cost.Previously, this product was only available at a cost for each device connected, Winkler stated this is a savings of approximately $2,000 per year.
Winkler also reported changes to RCH’s visiting physician clinic. A Radiant Complexion Dermatology Clinic representative from Des Moines met with Winkler and Jennifer England to tour RCH’s visiting physician clinic site. Alison Metzger, AARNP, one of Radiant Complexion’s practicing providers indicated interest in providing services through the visiting physician clinic. Metzger would provide a full range of dermatological treatments including: skin cancers, rashes, eczema, rosacea, fungal infections and certain cosmetic services including Botox and derma fillers. Winkler also noted Radiant Complexions does accept Medicaid. A lease agreement and credentialing processes are underway with an anticipated start date for the new dermatology services to begin in January 2020.
In other changes, Dr. Roy Molina, MD, current oncology care provider for the visiting physician clinic announced his retirement. His last clinic with be December 4. Dr. Zeeshan Jawa, MD will replace Molina beginning January 9. Dr, Jawa will be available monthly on the second Thursday of the month. On a side note, Winkler shared that the nurse for Dr. Robert Schreck, MD, a longtime oncology care provider at RCH, will be serving as Dr. Jawa’s nurse for the visiting clinic days.
Rounding out the discussion, Teresa Roberts resigned her position as controller effective December 31. Kylie Hensley assumed the controller position with the accounts payable position advertised to replace Hensley.
The Mercy Group as a whole recently submitted requests for proposal to three auditing firms including RCH’s current audit firm of Seim Johnson.
In sharing the attributes of the three firms being looked at, Winkler indicated they were very similar models. Advantages of making a change is that a new firm could potentially provide a fresh perspective and staying with the current firm would provide security in the confidence of a good working relationship and satisfaction with the job done. A decision will be made by December 5 with each Mercy affiliate making their own choice.