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On-site MRI will be a priority for 2013/14 health district budget

Lake Health District’s chief financial officer, Ken Landau, discussed the district’s needs for on-site MRI services during the board’s Feb. 7 meeting.

Landau spoke of an analysis for on-site MRI services during the financial report portion of the meeting.

He noted that there have been complaints of the level of quality for services received by the mobile unit.

Resulting re-takes lead to an increase of costs for the patients as well as the district, he said.

The availability of on-site services would afford five MRI scans per week, versus the current average of 1.5 per week by the mobile unit, Landau said.

Landau also recommended that the discussion of this addition should be a priority for the 2013/14 budget year.

The board also discussed the upcoming budget calendar, and related committee positions.

Landau suggested the board reschedule its June meeting to the second week of the month to allow for the budget hearing, rather than holding two separate meetings.

The budget committee has one resigned position, as Michelle Key moved from the area, Landau said.

The positions of both Hugh Cahill and Joni Bogardus will also be expiring this year.

Compliance Officer Patti Baker reviewed some data with the board, some of which included statistics on unassisted patient falls per 100 inpatient days.

Facility statistics were aligned with state and national benchmarks. Five falls were reported in the month of July, of which two were determined valid.

Baker noted that cases in which staff finds a patient on the floor must be reported, despite being unknown if an actual fall occurred.

During her nursing report, Dir. of Nurses Teresa Squires reported an increase in chemotherapy and infusion patients.

She also reported a search for a new staff respiratory therapist as well as a new cardio-pulmonary therapist.

Squires also reported a new forthcoming program for newly-pregnant patients. Known as the Stork Lunch and Learn program, newly-deemed moms-to-be are hosted for lunch and an informational meeting with educational elements related to pregnancy and childbirth, Squires said.

The program is set to launch in March, she said.

During the CEO’s report, Charlie Tveit reported that an agreement has not yet been signed with the Eastern Oregon Coordinated Care Organization (CCO).

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