Wilkes Regional Medical Center January Board Meeting
Contact: Tammy G. Love
Director of Marketing & Medical Staff Development
Phone: (336) 651-8116
By CHARLES S. WILLIAMS
Wilkes Journal-Patriot Staff
FOR SERVICE TO BOARD - Dr. Paul Coggins, center, was honored for his five years of service as a member of the Wilkes Regional Medical Center Hospital Operating Board Tuesday night. Presenting Coggins with the award is Arnold Lakey, right, the chairman of the hospital board. On the left is Gene Faile, WRMC chief executive officer.
Wilkes Regional Medical Center has been accredited with a “Gold Seal” for a three-year term by the Joint Commission, a national organization that develops standards for health care providers to ensure that patient care is provided in a safe manner.
Gene Faile, the hospital's chief executive officer, told members of the hospital operating board Tuesday night that three surveyors from the commission visited the hospital Dec. 6-10 and awarded the hospital the “Gold Seal of Approval.”
According to the commission, the Gold Seal is “an indicator that the organization has proven its commitment to high quality patient care and its willingness to be measured against the highest and most rigorous standards of performance.
Forward thinking health care organizations volunteer for evaluations by The Joint Commission to stimulate improvement efforts in health care quality and patient safety and to help support operational efficiencies.”
Coggins Honored-Former Wilkes Sheriff Dane Mastin was welcomed Tuesday night as the newest member of the WRMC board while Dr. Paul Coggins was thanked for his five years of service.
Coggins, a dentist whose practice is located in the West Wilkes Medical Center building, resigned from the board this past fall. Mastin was chosen as his successor but, as an elected official, could not serve on the WRMC board until his term as sheriff ended in December. Last night was the first meeting of the full hospital board since Mastin took office.
Coggins thanked the board members for their help and understanding, saying that his resignation “allows me to pursue my part-time teaching career and other interests.”
Coggins teaches at the UNC-Chapel Hill dental school and at Wake Technical Community College in Raleigh on Friday afternoons while maintaining his dental practice here Mondays-Thursdays.
While thanking Coggins for his service to the board, Lakey noted that board members may serve for nine years so Coggins “can serve for four more years if and when his schedule permits.”
Dr. John Oliver, a former member of the WRMC board, was welcomed to the board meeting as the hospital's new chief of staff. He succeeds Dr. Jack McLarney in that position.
Faile said that the Wilkes Physicians Network Inc. -- a wholly owned, not-for-profit subsidiary of WRMC that was created to recruit and employ physicians in Wilkes - is continuing to grow. Dr. Jerry Pinkerton (internal medicine and pediatrics) will be joining the network soon. Six physicians were recruited to the network in 2010 along with three practices: Northwest Carolinas Women's Care, Greenway HealthCare, and Wilkes Family Health Center.
Dr. Jon Thompson and Dr. Brad Huggins, the two WPN general surgeons now on the hospital staff, were introduced to the board by Faile. Thompson, said Faile, had performed 973 surgical procedures since joining the staff in August 2008. Huggins opened his practice here on Dec. 1, 2010, and performed 10 surgical procedures during his first month.
According to Faile, “We are always looking to bring new physicians to join our excellent medical staff to better meet the health care needs of Wilkes residents. We are receiving assistance from Carolinas Healthcare Systems (which manages Wilkes Regional) with physician recruitment. Within the past six weeks, for example, we have identified over 10,000 internal medicine physicians across the country who have received flyers telling them about what we have to offer here.”
Financial report-Through the first three months of the fiscal year (ending Dec. 31, 2010), hospital officials reported a net income of $7,998. That includes a loss from operations of $109,641, and non-operating revenue of $117,639.
For November, the income from operations was $118,259, with loss in non-operating revenue of $5,165 for net revenue of $113,094. In December, the hospital lost $240,933 from operations but made $31,706 in non-operating funds, and a net loss of $209,227.
Chief Financial Officer Marlin Markham told board members that, in December the hospital invested additional funds for construction and completion of the new magnetic resonance imaging unit. Also, there were architectural fees as hospital officials prepared a bid package for the expansion of the emergency department.