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Tyrone Hospital fills board of directors vacancies

Board reorganizes

Tyrone Hospital Board reorganized after its annual Corporation meeting Monday night at the Tyrone Elementary School LGI room. Newly elected board members include, seated from left: Paulette Davis, Heather Baumgarten, Carrie Maceno and Sarah DelBaggio, and President Judy Norris. Back: John Conrad, Dr. Luis Jourdain who was reelected, Elmer Nearhoof, Melissa Miller, Greg Murray, Ellie Spangler, William DeHaas and Vicki Shaw. Also on the board is John Bartlett. (The Daily Herald/Virgie Werner)

Last evening, the Tyrone Hospital Corporation held its 61st annual meeting in the LGI room at Tyrone Elementary School. A crowd of community members and past/present Tyrone Hospital employees were on hand for the restructuring of the 14-member board of directors, in which five vacant seats were to be filled.
The board nominated five people, three of who malready filled seats, and a set of candidates were nominated by the floor, of which were backed by the Vision Committee.
After a brief recess to tally the member votes, Board President Judy Norris announced the newly elected members who will fill the five board vacancies. They include: Luis Jourdain, M.D., Heather Baumgarten, Carrie Maceno, Sarah DelBaggio and Paulette Davis, all of whom were supported by the Vision Committee.
No matter who was elected, the goal for the board is to emerge from bankruptcy and keep Tyrone Hospital open as an acute care facility. Board President Judy Norris feels that the board put up a slate of five people who have the expertise to guide the hospital through the next several years.
Norris also believes that the elected members backed from the Vision Committee and the floor can accomplish the same goals.
She stated, \”Once they get an education and understand the complexities of the situation, I truly believe they\’ll make some good decisions. Maybe we won\’t always agree on every issue, but I think the underlying factor is that we are all here for the same reason – to see what\’s best for the Tyrone Hospital.\”
Norris continued, \” I believe right now they have a lot of misinformation, and so hopefully in the coming year as we go through a training period and they sit in on board meetings, they\’ll have a better understanding of actually what does take place and what is happening, and they\’ll have a better understanding of where we are and where we are going.\”
Newly elected board member and Vision Committee member, Sarah DelBaggio, who has 10 years career experience as a Corporate Trainer, Political/Grassroots/Fundraising Campaigner and Strategic Marketing Manager, was very pleased with the election.
\”We have a lot of hard work to do, but I think with community support and physician support, we have a good row to hoe. Things should be good,\” said DelBaggio.
With the hospital\’s board of directors already working hard and their willingness to continue to work to overcome the bankruptcy issues to keep Tyrone Hospital\’s doors open, CEO Walter S. Van Dyke stressed that it can\’t be accomplished alone. In the last three years the hospital has made a lot of progress in bringing losses from $3 million up to about $600,000. Patients are needed, and unless the hospital gets additional patients, then it\’s all for not.
Van Dyke said, \”We\’ve cut costs and we believe the hospital\’s being managed as efficiently as possible. Our issue revolves around revenue. We don\’t have enough revenue, we don\’t have enough patients, we don\’t have enough people coming and using the lab, the X-Ray, and things of that nature.
\”So, it\’s very important for our medical staff to bring the patients to the hospital, and that\’s what we need to do. Without a stronger medical staff, we can\’t bring the patients to the hospital,\” added Van Dyke.
Along with the restructuring of the board, the corporate membership presented the annual Treasurer\’s Report for the 2007 fiscal year through Chief Financial Officer George Berger. With the hospital\’s struggles, an obvious decline was shown in comparison to the 2006 fiscal year.
Patient admissions with the nursery declined 5.8 percent from 2006 to 2007. Without the nursery it saw a 4.53 percent decline. Patient days with the nursery declined 7.93 percent and without the nursery 2.66 percent. ER visits declined 2.10 percent. IP surgeries declined 5 percent. OP surgeries declined 18.28 percent. Gross revenue had a slight decline of 1.71 percent, but net revenue increased 5.5 percent, which is around $522,000. ER revenue jumped from $3.8 million to 4.5 million.
Expenses decreased 1.75 percent from $15.4 million to 15 million. Operating loss had a 42 percent improvement from 2006 to 2007, and total loss from the previous year showed a 65 percent improvement going from $1.6 million to $587,000.
CFO Berger stated, \”We have to do what we have to do to generate revenue. We need to get higher patient volume.\”
The last year the hospital profited was in 2000, and in June 2006 a loss of $3.9 million was greatly influenced by a $2.25 million dollar malpractice claim that happened in 1995 and surfaced in \’06.
Board President Norris feels that they are making strides to keep Tyrone Hospital open by their financial performances.
She added, \”Our numbers have improved. We\’re not there, but we are getting there.\”
A meeting is planned for October to discuss further plans of possible mergers according to CEO Van Dyke, but he did not comment in detail.
\”Until then, we\’re moving along with operations,\” ended Van Dyke.