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MDH Board of Directors Meeting Update

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MACOMB, Ill. – During the November McDonough District Hospital Board of Directors meeting, Interim President/CEO Brian E. Dietz, MHA, FACHE, updated MDH Board members on the strategic initiatives and clinical partnership discussions taking place that will improve health care offerings for area residents and continue strengthening the organization.

“There is considerable interest that has been expressed by larger regional organizations to discuss potential clinical partnerships with McDonough District Hospital. Working with our Medical Staff, we have identified clinical specialty needs that are being covered locally on a part-time basis or are simply not available at all in McDonough County. It is our intent to work collaboratively with our Medical Staff leadership to engage interested organizations to expand our current clinical offerings in Macomb, and hopefully bring new services that haven’t been available locally,” said Dietz.

One specialty area Dietz referenced is the need for full-time local cardiology coverage, and used as an example discussions with Prairie Heart, which currently staffs a part-time office in Macomb, and Blessing Hospital which has a robust, high-quality cardiac program that is very accessible from Macomb. Springfield Clinic has also expressed an interest in discussing expanded cardiac coverage in the community as well.

“We have no new agreements as of this time, but continue to seek discussions that can be of mutual benefit to McDonough District Hospital and our surrounding communities and the much larger, more regionally-focused organizations,” stated Dietz. “Successful clinical affiliations with the right partner will improve local access to needed health care services, which should significantly reduce the need to leave our community for primary care services.”

Dietz also mentioned entities such as OSF and HSHS who have expressed a desire to discuss potential future relationships.

“We have organizations very interested in a few different specialties… this is not pursuing a business partnership, but looking at opportunities for high-quality clinical partnerships that will help us develop more comprehensive services for our community,” said Dietz.

Update on Emergency Department Staffing

Another medical services area discussed was the MDH Emergency Department. Dietz announced that in accordance to the current contract terms, MDH gave notice to Emergency Physicians Staffing Solutions (EPSS), the current physician staffing provider for the hospital’s Emergency Department, it will open the contract up for bid.

“As required by our existing contract with EPSS, to entertain any other potential contractors we needed to give EPSS the required 270-day notice. We have had discussions with three other national companies (Sound Physicians, Envision, and Team Health) all of which enjoy impressive track records in meeting Emergency Department staffing needs for hospitals across the country. EPSS will also be considered in addition to these three companies. I’m really excited with the discussions we’ve had. We hope to have a decision made by mid-January,” stated Dietz.

Dolores Kator Switzer Women’s Center Update

Project manager David Cady updated the Board on progress made with the Dolores Kator Switzer Women’s Center (DKSWC).

He stated framing has started ahead of schedule with work on the roof and laying bricks to soon follow. The blue tarp that surrounded the building was in place to help regulate temperatures while fire-proofing the beams and letting it cure. The concrete roof was poured, and after allowing a 4-5 day period for the roof to set, Cady stated every engineer involved on the project signed off on that part of the project.

Overall the project is on time, with the Radiology portion of the DKSWC looking to open next fall.

Two New Executive Staff Members

MDH hired two new members to the executive team recently, both as interim executives. Dietz introduced and welcomed newly-hired Randy Buchnowski, MHA, FACHE, as the Interim Vice President for Ambulatory Services. He will oversee the physician practice groups.

Dietz also announced the hiring of Jeff Mullis as the Interim Chief Financial Officer. Mullis started his new role on November 27.