Henry County Medical Center Announces New Cardiologist and New OB/GYN to Community at Board Meeting – Reports on Growth Initiatives as Organization Grows Forward for the Community

CUTLINE 1:  Pictured is Rob Smith, Director of Plant Operations, as he shares with the board visually the facility improvements made this past year along with upcoming needs the organization will need to begin addressing within the facility.

CUTLINE 2:  Pictured are Joyce Burton, 35 year partner, and Vicki Douglass,40 year partner, with CEO Lisa Casteel at our Service Awards program in September honoring 76 with 1,000 years of service.

Paris, TN – Henry County Medical Center opened its Thursday night meeting with a long awaited announcement with Saint Thomas Health that an invasive cardiologist is coming to live and work in Paris and Henry County starting December 1, 2019.  With April Hackney, Vice President, Cardiac Services, Saint Thomas Heart, conferenced in by phone to the meeting, Lisa Casteel, CEO, was finally able to reveal that Dr. Wayne Gibson would be joining the HCMC Kelley Clinic.

“Dr. Gibson was looking at three locations to practice – California, Michigan, and Paris,” said Casteel.  “He was very impressed with us and we are excited to announce that he has chosen HCMC.”

Hackney stated that Dr. Gibson wants to work in a rural community and is very excited to join Saint Thomas Heart and Henry County Medical Center.  For more information on Dr. Gibson and the HCMC affilliation with Saint Thomas Health, please see the separate news release on the official announcement located on our website at www.hcmc-tn.org.

The meeting continued with a presentation by Dale Guffey, CFO on the financials for August as well as a presentation on facilities management by Rob Smith, Director of Plant Operations.

In the financial presentation, Guffey shared with the board that though volumes are higher than last year, they are not meeting budget and with staffing and contract labor, salaries and expenses are up, causing a negative impact to the bottom line.  September financials are expected to be similar.  Contract labor is being reviewed and with help from a recruitment campaign, HCMC is working to fill the needs in nursing and respiratory therapy, two of the areas where contract labor has been used most.  Though net operating expenses were $400,000 more than prior year, expenses surpassed profits, creating a loss of almost $574,000 for the month.

Bad debt in the amount of $704,345 was approved by the board along with capital projects totaling $72,448.  The biggest items included were an airway clearance system and pulmonary function machines.

Smith’s presentation was an update to the board on the facilities improvement projects that had been completed this year including the HVAC7 replacement, a new roof for 2 East, outpatient infusion, and the chill water project.  He also provided a visual of the risks of aging equipment including other roof challenges, two aging elevators, and issues at the Home Health and Hospice building.  Lastly, Smith showed plans for several renovations including the Cardiac Catheterization laboratory, the 2 East renovation and the ER renovation project.

The meeting continued with Casteel’s report to the board where she discussed some regulatory news that will impact HCMC including a CMS ruling and the new TN state block grants affecting the Medicaid program.  She also discussed the News Channel 5 program, “Emergency in the ER” where HCMC is featured related to hospital closures and the impacts to surrounding hospitals in TN.  To view the 30 minute long segment, go to https://www.facebook.com/newschannel5/videos/emergency-at-the-er-a-documentary/1627772294022560/.

Casteel also reported the start of Dr. Boxell on December 1, 2019.  She is an OB/GYN from Jackson, TN who will join the Paris Women’s Center.  She also recognized the 76 employees who represented a total of 1,000 hours of service to HCMC during our September Service Awards program along with the four partners recognized for outstanding service.  Nathan Williams, Information Systems, and Jon Marc Gowen, Home Health & Hospice received Partners of the Year and Jacki O’Brien, Education/Infection Control and Rhonda Crossett, HCMC Women’s Center, were recognized and Department Directors of the year.  Eight partners were inducted into the Quarter Century Club for 25 years of service with two partners recognized for 35 and 40 years of service to the organization.

In other business, the board approved medical staff bylaws changes related to CRNAs as well as the merit increases and partner gain-sharing for 2019.  Also presented was the compensation plan for the organization that the board tabled to vote on until next board meeting.

In the People report given by Billie McKee, Chief Human Resources Officer, she also discussed the continued reduction in turnover with HCMC down another percent to 12 percent and HCHC still showing well with a 23 percent turnover rate.  Currently there are 12 open RN positions, 5 LPN positions, 5 CNA positions, and 2 PRN positions open.  HCMC has hired 169 new partners in 2019.

The HCMC Board of Trustees also approved to purchase the old Mrs. Betty’s daycare property located behind adjacent to HCMC and received an update on grant programs.  Unfortunately, HCMC did not receive the Federally Qualified Health Clinic grant, with only two in the state awarded.  HCMC will submit for the FQHC look alike application to move forward with plans for Paris Women’s Center, Transitions Health, and Eagle Creek Clinic.

Casteel also discussed a new grant that HCMC has been accepted into with 12 hospitals currently participating.  With the support of the Delta Regional Authority (DRA) and the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy (FORHP), the National Rural Health Resource Center provides selected rural Delta hospitals, clinics and their communities with technical assistance through the Delta Region Community Health Systems Development (DRCHSD) Program. The purpose of the DRCHSD Program is to assist leaders and providers in identifying and addressing health care needs while strengthening the local health care system and preparing them for population health.  The grant provides technical assistance with various assessments, onsite consultations, workshops and educational trainings, which will be provided through a multi-year approach. The Program is designed to increase the efficiency of the local health care delivery system practices by focusing on care coordination, social services integration, emergency medical services access, and workforce recruitment and retention with the goal to:

  • Improve financial position and increase operational efficiencies
  • Implement quality improvements that support an evidenced-based culture for improved health outcomes
  • Address workforce recruitment and retention needs
  • Increase use of telemedicine to fill service gaps and access to care
  • Ensure access to and availability of Emergency Medical Services
  • Integrate social services to address socio-economic challenges
  • Enhance coordination of care and develop a community care coordination plan
  • Strengthen the local health care delivery system to position for population health

The board approved to move forward with participating in this grant program.

Casteel announced that HCMC will present at the upcoming County Commission meeting on October 21 about the state of healthcare in Henry County.  Drs. Whitby, Chandler, Finley, and Mobley will be in attendance to assist in the presentation and board members are encouraged to attend.

To learn more about the growth at Henry County Medical Center, go to our website at www.hcmc-tn.org and read about all the services we offer to care for our community.  The next Board of Trustees meeting will be October 24 at 5:30 p.m. in the HCMC Board Room.

About Henry County Medical Center

Located in Paris, TN, Henry County Medical Center is a progressive, integrated healthcare organization committed to serving the healthcare needs of Henry County and the adjoining region. Including a 142-bed hospital and 7 other facilities, the medical center provides a variety of outpatient services, as well as inpatient care. Henry County Medical Center is a county-owned and operated nonprofit institution. For more information: www.hcmc-tn.org.