Renovations to a building to house several Texas County Memorial Hospital entities will be completed this year, the board of trustees heard Tuesday.
Wes Murray, TCMH chief executive officer shared with hospital board members that the targeted completion date for the new pharmacy location is Nov. 1.
“We plan to move the pharmacy first, and then our home health department and walk-in clinic will follow shortly after,” Murray explained. “We hope to have the last two moves completed by Dec. 1.”
“The moves will free up some much-needed space in the medical complex and give us the ability to make room for the new physicians that we plan to recruit to TCMH in 2020,” Murray said.
The building was acquired from Mercy after it closed its clinic and is on the east side of South Sam Houston Blvd. across from the hospital.
“Physician recruiting is a big part of our focus right now,” Murray said.
“Currently, Dr. Crase and three of our TCMH leaders are in Wichita, Kan., meeting with full-scope family medicine residents,” Murray explained. “Many of the third-year residents are not yet committed and we hope to find a couple that would like to make Texas County their home next summer.”
Murray mentioned that pediatrician, Teresa Loden, DO, is actively working to build TCMH up as a training ground for medical students.
“When the students receive the opportunity to train in a rural area, they often return once they finish their residency programs,” Murray said.
“We are fortunate to have the opportunity to host the medical students for their rotations while they are here,” Murray said. “Hopefully their experiences at TCMH play a positive role in encouraging them to return to work in a rural area.”
Several medical students have spent time at TCMH over the last several years, but since July, TCMH has already had several come through thanks to the efforts of Loden.
Murray introduced Cody Shopper, a third-year medical student, to the hospital board members.
Shopper along with two other third-year medical students, just began a two-month long rotation at TCMH and will be staying in the area through the middle of November.
The third-year residents will receive training in family medicine, pediatrics, general surgery, internal medicine and emergency medicine.
“We greatly appreciate Dr. Loden’s efforts,” Murray said. “Allowing the medical students to gain exposure to rural medicine not only helps the students, but it is crucial to the future of rural hospitals everywhere.”
Murray mentioned that a site visit is planned for general surgeon candidate, Nicholas Whitenack, MD.
“Dr. Whitenack received the opportunity to spend a month working with general surgeon, Jason Loden, DO, earlier this year and expressed that he enjoyed working here and exploring the area,” Murray explained.
“We are thrilled to have the opportunity to bring him back for a formal site visit,” Murray said.
“He would be a great asset to our hospital and the community.”
Whitenack is a third-year general surgery resident at Creighton University Medical Center in Omaha, Neb.
“I would encourage all of our community members to go out of their way to make our medical students and our physicians who come in for site visits feel welcomed,” Murray said. “We may be the only family they have close by, so it is very important that they feel the warmth and hospitality of Texas County.”
Pamperien presented the financial report for August.
There were revenue challenges for the month on both the inpatient and outpatient sides.
“Overall revenues were down $525,487 in August from our budgeted expectations,” Pamperien said. “Inpatient volumes were down $244,385 and outpatient revenue was down $254,033 for the month.”
TCMH closed out August with total gross operating revenue of about $6.5 million with net revenues after reductions and contractuals being about $2.7 million.
TCMH ended August with a negative bottom line of $292,199 and a negative year-to-date loss of about $1.04 million.
Present at the meeting were Murray; Pamperien; Doretta Todd-Willis, chief nursing officer; Amanda Turpin, quality; Linda Milholen, MD; Renina Pearce; board members, Jim Perry, OD, Omanez Fockler, Jay Loveland and Allan Branstetter; guests, William Mahoney, CoxHealth Representative and Cody Shopper, third year medical student. Board member Janet Wiseman was absent.