CRMC board approves remodel for pain clinic
CROSBY--A remodel for the Cuyuna Regional Medical Center Pain Clinic was approved Monday during a hospital governing board meeting. The board approved $91,759 for the remodel. Also approved was spending $28,900 for equipment for outpatient proced...
CROSBY-A remodel for the Cuyuna Regional Medical Center Pain Clinic was approved Monday during a hospital governing board meeting.
The board approved $91,759 for the remodel. Also approved was spending $28,900 for equipment for outpatient procedures used to treat people's chronic pain.
Other capital requests of $23,000 for a roof-top humidifier and $57,980 for an upgrade to the security camera were also approved.
Kyle Bauer, chief operating officer, provided a financial report for the end of the fiscal year in March, noting inpatient volume was down a little in March with 379 patient days, down 20 percent below budget and 22 percent below last year's numbers. Patient days in the 25-bed medical center amounted to 5,454 looking at year-to-date numbers, about 5 percent below last year. Admissions were also down in March and so far this year there have been just under 2,000 inpatient admissions, about 9 percent under budget and 6 percent below last year.
"Pretty much all hospitals across the country are seeing this type of trend," Bauer said. "Patients aren't needing acute status. They get put in what is called observation status. They still go to the floor but they are an outpatient not an inpatient."
Bauer said CRMC ended the year with about 600 observation days, about 38 percent above both budget and last year. Length of stay averaged 2.76.
In the Care Center the occupancy was reported at 81 percent for March and 78.6 percent for the year, about 3 percent below last year.
There were increases in outpatient areas.
At the emergency room, there were 831 visits in March, 12 percent above last year.
"Pretty much every month we've been above budget in ER visits," Bauer said.
Bauer said clinic visits were up significantly in March at 5,898, ending the year at 67,979, a 4 percent increase compared to last year.
"A big growth area we've seen this year is total outpatient visits," Bauer said, noting that includes clinic visits, lab, radiology and therapy areas. The year with 166,864 total outpatient visits, a 15 percent increase compared to last year.
Surgical volume was also up in March. The fiscal year ended with 3,272 surgeries, about 8 percent above last year.
The medical center ended the year with 16.5 average patient census. There were a few days with the patient census above 20.
Overall, Bauer said volume is down on inpatient side and up on the outpatient side.
"We continue to grow and that's what's driving our net patient revenue."
Bauer said the fiscal year ended with a $3.3 million operating margin, pretty much unchanged from last year. Looking at depreciation and interest from CRMC's surgical expansion and opening of its multi-specialty clinic, Bauer said just those two line items raised expenses by $2.5 million. To be at the same place given that action, Bauer said it is really a $2.5 million betterment in the net bottom line compared to last year.
"It was a good month in the Care Center, let's hope that trend continues," Bauer said. "If you compare to last year, our expenses are up about $600,000, our revenues down about $600,000 so that's a $1.2 million swing that we saw in this fiscal year-negatively."
The board also heard the age of patients are increasing largely because of Medicare patients. But there was also growth in the number of babies born at CRMC. Other activity includes work to get an occupational therapist for home visits. Ambulance runs increased from 1,162 last year to 1,192 and a new rig is now set up and working. The community paramedic program works to prevent readmissions with patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, pneumonia and congestive heart failure and had 431 visits year to date. Cardiac services were expanded with more electrocardiograms and now stress tests in the emergency room, with about 10 done last month, so people can be cleared to go home and not stay in the hospital.
Amy Hart, chief operating officer, highlighted a few items in the surgery department with a decrease of 26.2 percent in ophthalmology because of the loss of a physician, saying it shows how important just one physician is to the operation of the organization. In September, CRMC is adding two orthopaedic surgeons. Hart said an 8.2 percent overall increase in growth in the operating room was a tremendous percentage. Hart said the Baxter Clinic was down by 27.5 percent after losing a clinician almost a year ago. A new clinician is expected in July. The one orthopaedic surgeon who left was the only one going to Baxter. Hart said that will change this fall. Chief Executive Officer John Solheim prompted a round of applause for the senior management team for working with clinicians through the change to Excelion Technology, a company that specializes in health care solutions, which was completed last May.
Two board members were recognized for years of service-Richard Schiller, Fifty Lakes, five years and Mary Zillmer, Crosby, 15 years.
Just a few members of the public attended this meeting.
The governing board is hosting a public hearing at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at Heartwood Senior Living in Crosby regarding a change from a public to a nonprofit 501(c)3. More information on this change is posted on the CRMC website and a paper copy is available at the hospital's administration office.
In addition, the governing board set a strategic marketing retreat for 3 p.m. May 12 in the Earl Bedard Room at the medical center.
RENEE RICHARDSON, associate editor, may be reached at 218-855-5852 or firstname.lastname@example.org . Follow on Twitter at www.twitter.com/Dispatchbizbuzz .