Southern Utah News Articles
Top Stories for March 9, 2011
Hospital board approves incentive to Employee Wellness Program
The Kane County Hospital Board met on March 1, with all members present. Chairperson Dottie Ratzlaff brought the meeting to order.
Hospital Administrator Sherrie Pandya indicated there are some options for incentives to encourage the employees to join the Hospital Wellness program. This could reduce their insurance contribution by a minimum to a maximum set amount for their participation.
Director of Human Resources Laurali Noteman clarified: as an example, if the employee is a non-smoker or participates in the Weight Watchers Program when the employee logs in their time, they could earn a single credit towards reducing their insurance premium for the employee. That would double for the family participation.
Action items: Pandya recommended keeping the hospital’s contribution to the Health Savings Account (HAS) account the same as last year, stating they needed to look at and adjust the employee contribution percentage.
Pandya listed which yearly policies needed to be reviewed and approved by the board, Nursing Department: Quality Assurance Performance Improvement (OAPI), Average Drug Event (ADE) and the Patient Safety Program. They have been reviewed and approved by the individual committees responsible for implementation of the policies, the medical staff and administration. The board gave the final approval.
Employee Insurance Carrier: Pandya said it was time to renew the dental, life and disability insurance. She has acquired several bids from Meritain Health and Starmark. She recommends the hospital change to SelectHealth, keeping the coverage and deductibles the same as with United Healthcare.
Pandya discussed a future possibility of combining hospital employee insurances with the Kane County’s insurance plan.
Emergency Medical Service Director Stuart Willoughby informed the board he would be applying for a 50% matching grant for I-pods for each ambulance to be used to record EMS transactions into a computer, versus the current paper recording. This would provide a better method of record keeping and be more beneficial to the staff and patients.
Willoughby said most EMTs are volunteers and a training program on this new system would be needed.
Director of Nursing Rosalie Esplin announced some vacancies to the nursing staff in January. The six vacancies were advertised, interviews were conducted and the positions have been filled.
Pandya discussed the Advancing Rural Connections for Healthcare and E-Health Services (ARCHES) Project. This project creates a high-speed private broadband network managed by the Utah Telehealth Network. Pandya explained since Kane County is a rural hospital, we have been part of the project for two years. ARCHES is now ready to start installation. The hospital has signed up for a 20MB capacity.
Noteman announced the hospital’s intent to establish set hours for the gift shop in the hospital lobby. The hospital would coordinate with the Kane County Volunteer Center who will provide volunteers to manage the shop and also act as “greeters” for patients and visitors.
The board unanimously approved the employee’s lunch with the board as a communication concept. The Brown Bag Lunch, with a set topic and date, will be conducted during work hours, giving the hospital employees a chance to attend, meet the board members and exchange thoughts and ideas.