For Breast Cancer Awareness Month

“Pink Out” at the MCHS football game this Friday. MMH is selling shirts to be able to finance free mammograms for those in need.

Free gift for MMH mammography patients all month

Free mammograms for patients without health insurance, a partnership between MMH and local physicians

By Nick Nunn, Staff Writer

Kyle Wilkinson, the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) for the Morgan Memorial Hospital (MMH), gave a report to the Morgan Memorial Hospital Authority (MMHA) during their Aug. 29 meeting, indicated that MMH suffered a net loss of more than $110,000 during the month of August. As a loss of more than $8,000 was budgeted for the August, the net income of the hospital was $102,000 below budget.

Wilkinson stated that paying out approximately $177,000 in employee health claims – up more than $155,000 from July – was “the main reason we lost money in August.”

Net patient revenue during August was only $5,000 less than budgeted, and gross patient revenue enjoyed a more than $224,000 increase from July 2013.

Total operating expenses during August 2013 was down almost $135,000 from August 2012, which Wilkinson stated comes from “doing a lot better controlling expenses.”

The average daily census, emergency department visits, outpatient visits, and surgical procedures at MMH were all up from July 2013.

Paul Courchaine, MMHA member, said that August was “much improved over July” and “overall, a very good month.”

During a quality improvement presentation given at the MMHA meeting, Kimberly Miller, quality assurance manager at MMH, told the board that MMH’s core measure performances in the emergency department during the period between Jan. 2012 and Sept. 2012 exceed those of other local hospitals, as well as the Georgia and national averages, according to www.hostpitalcompare.hhs.gov.

The average time a patient spends in the emergency department at MMH before being admitted as an inpatient is 232 minutes, compared to Georgia’s average of 280 and the national average of 274 minutes.

Similarly the average time that MMH patients spend after being admitted before they leave for their inpatient room is 58 minutes. Georgia’s average is 95 minutes and the national average is 96 minutes.

These numbers are a “snapshot” of what will be seen about MMH on Hospital Compare’s website, stated Miller, reiterating that “we do well” at MMH.

Miller also stated that falls at the hospital are down in the 2 percent range, which shows “consistent improvement since May,” when the percentage was closer to 10 percent.

The MMH Hospitalist Practice, which began on Sept. 1 received praise from several board members during the meeting.

According to an MMH brochure on the Hospitalist program, hospitalists are “healthcare providers who devote their practice to the care of hospitalized patients.”

Hospitalists take care of hospitalized patients in their primary care physician’s stead and manage all aspects of the patients’ care during their hospital stay.

Eighteen hospitalist patients have been admitted in the past month, and Megan Morris, director of development and community relations at MMH, said that the distribution of marketing materials for the hospitalist program is “going to be very beneficial.”

Morris also discussed several programs going on because of October being breast cancer awareness month. MMH is joining up with the Morgan County High School Touchdown Club for a “Pink Out” football game this Friday, Oct. 4. MMH is selling shirts to raise money in order to finance free mammograms at MMH.

All month, MMH mammography patients are receiving a special gift, and local physicians are partnering with MMH during the month to provide free mammograms for patients without health insurance.