Memorial Hospital approves new health insurance policies

Published 11:57 pm Friday, October 18, 2013

Members of the Memorial Hospital and Manor Authority voted at the October meeting to approve a new health insurance proposal received from Blue Cross.
CEO Billy Walker explained that administration had been working with a broker who, after reviewing last year’s claims, showed if they had been with Blue Cross they would have saved $270,000.
The board also approved a 5 percent rate increase, as well as the associated tax that goes into effect in 2014. This will be passed on to the employees. Walker said there had not been a rate increase since 2006.
An optional wellness program will also be implemented in 2014, and employees who choose to participate will see a reduction in their rates. It consists of coaching employees to address their health issues. For those who choose not to participate, Walker said their rates will go up “significantly.”
Authority chair, Charles Tyson questioned if the hospital would partner with the YMCA, to which Walker replied that Memorial Hospital is already participating in the corporate partnership with the Y.
The hospital also offers a flexible spending account to pay for medically related expenses not covered by insurance, and is considering offering a vision plan.
“If our employees use the domestic services which we offer, they also get a discount,” Walker explained.
For the month of Sept. the hospital reported a net income of $69,942. Although it was less than last month’s $87,215, the hospital continued its streak of positive monthly numbers..
Board Treasurer Glennie Bench indicated that the budget for the first half of the fiscal year shows net revenue is up, but so are expenses. This was attributed mainly to the extra salaries paid to new physicians and staff. The report also reflected that receipts from the Indigent Care Trust fund are down, and that the hospital has no control over that.
Walker reported the hospital recently held its first Family Fun Day Festival on the grounds and had a good turnout.
Memorial Hospital is offering special services in observance of October being Breast Cancer Month. There is a special on mammograms and a luncheon with a panel of speakers was held.
Walker reported that 117 people from education took advantage of the special health fair offered recently. Community health fairs will be held Nov. 21 and 22.
The hospital is now eligible for a dividend in 2014 as a result of receiving a Workers Compensation Fund award.
The hospital recently had a visit from the accreditation team and found it to be a positive experience.
A one-half educational session for all medical staff was scheduled for Thursday afternoon, Oct. 17.
Following an executive session, the board returned to open meeting and voted to approve credentialing for new physician applicants and reappointments. as well as minutes from the meetings of the executive  and total quality management committees.

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