Hos­pi­tal board

LWDH ex­ec­u­tives an­tic­i­pate zero bud­get deficit for 2017.

Kenora Daily Miner and News - - FRONT PAGE - REG CLAY­TON

The Lake of the Woods Dis­trict Hos­pi­tal board wel­comed four new mem­bers ap­pointed in June at its first monthly meet­ing go­ing into the au­tumn ses­sion on Thurs­day, Sept 7. The ap­pointees are Dave Segerts, Ir­win Stachs, Jennifer McKib­bon and Carolyn Kokokope­nace.

Among the first or­ders of busi­ness, board mem­bers viewed the in­for­ma­tive video Ef­fec­tive Gov­er­nance for Qual­ity and Pa­tient Safety Ed­u­ca­tion Pro­gram for On­tario hos­pi­tal boards. The video fea­tured an in­ter­view with Univer­sity of Toronto physi­cian Dr. Ross Baker who noted in set­ting strate­gic ob­jec­tives for pa­tient safety and qual­ity care, the di­vid­ing line be­tween hos­pi­tal poli­cies and op­er­a­tions is not “as clear cut” as it would seem.

“Bud­gets are tight and many boards are not prop­erly equipped to set strate­gic goals for high qual­ity care,” Dr. Baker ob­served, adding hos­pi­tal boards need to have mem­bers fa­mil­iar with stan­dard ac­count­ing pro­ce­dures and the abil­ity to un­der­stand hos­pi­tal bal­ance sheets to lead the strate­gic plan­ning process.

By way of clar­i­fi­ca­tion for mem­bers new to the board, hos­pi­tal CEO Mark Bal­caen re­ferred to the hos­pi­tal’s Qual­ity Im­prove­ment Plan which ad­dresses is­sues re­lat­ing to pa­tient safety and qual­ity care. Bal­caen noted the plan is up­dated an­nu­ally to com­pare lo­cal pa­tient is­sues to pro­vin­cial pri­or­i­ties in ar­eas such as wait times and hos­pi­tal in­fec­tion rates and to set strate­gic goals ac­cord­ingly. The plan is posted on the hos­pi­tal web­site: www.lwdh.on.ca.

“We’ve set some pretty am­bi­tious tar­gets,” he said, adding he hos­pi­tal has been able to achieve the ma­jor­ity of its goals.

Hos­pi­tal ren­o­va­tions on track

Hos­pi­tal vice-pres­i­dent of pa­tient ser­vices Cindy Gas­porini pro­vided board mem­bers and lo­cal me­dia with an up­date of the ap­prox­i­mately $10 mil­lion hos­pi­tal ren­o­va­tion pro­gram cur­rently un­der­way and on track for com­ple­tion by late spring/early sum­mer of 2018.

She re­lated the new me­chan­i­cal room ad­di­tion con­structed on the roof of the Emer­gency Depart­ment is fin­ished with new hos­pi­tal me­chan­i­cal and elec­tri­cal ser­vices in place. Parts of the hos­pi­tal’s sec­ond floor are now boarded off to staff and pub­lic while con­trac­tors are at work. Mean­while, the clo­sure of an op­er­at­ing room will see cer­tain pro­ce­dures, such as cataract surg­eries move to a tem­po­rary lo­ca­tion on the fourth floor.

On a sep­a­rate but re­lated mat­ter. Gas­porini men­tioned hos­pi­tal foun­da­tion fundrais­ing ef­forts for CT Scan­ner re­place­ment is pro­gress­ing well with more than $800,000 raised for the $1.2 mil­lion pur­chase. She con­firmed the equip­ment has been or­dered and is sched­uled for in­stal­la­tion in Novem­ber once ren­o­va­tions to the area where it will be lo­cated are com­pleted.

Gas­porini and Bal­caen were also pleased to re­late pre­dic­tions of a zero deficit bud­get once again for 2017. They cred­ited suc­cess­ful ef­forts by the hos­pi­tal board and the North­west LHIN work­ing with the Min­istry of Health over the past sev­eral years to se­cure a pro­vin­cial in­crease of $1.4 mil­lion an­nu­ally (retroac­tive to 2016) to the hos­pi­tal’s base bud­get, plus an ad­di­tional one per cent in­crease in pro­vin­cial fund­ing has en­abled the hos­pi­tal to re­turn to fi­nan­cial sta­bil­ity.

Op­er­a­tional re­view un­der­way

Bench­mark In­tel­li­gence Group (BIG) part­ner Adam Topp made a brief pre­sen­ta­tion on the in­de­pen­dent op­er­a­tional re­view his com­pany is un­der­tak­ing on be­half of the board. Topp is lead­ing the team of nine con­sul­tants who will con­duct the re­view of Lake of the Woods Hos­pi­tal op­er­a­tions over the com­ing months. The fi­nal re­port is ex­pected to be com­pleted early next year.

“The ex­per­tise of the team is quite sub­stan­tial, in­clud- ing at least one doc­tor,” CEO Bal­caen com­mented. “They re­cently com­pleted a sim­i­lar re­view at Thun­der Bay Re­gional Health Sciences Cen­tre and the com­pany has done a con­sid­er­able amount of work in the North and South­ern On­tario hos­pi­tals.”

FILE PHOTO/ DAILY MINER AND NEWS

Lake of the Woods Dis­trict Hos­pi­tal vice-pres­i­dent of pa­tient ser­vices Cindy Gas­porini.

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