Medical Center Moment - December 2016

'Tis the season!  It’s a busy time of year for all of us, I hope you find time to find the joy that comes when we surround ourselves with friends, family and those we love.

With 2017 nearly here, we all start making New Year’s resolutions and changes that will make us better, stronger and healthier.  The medical center is no different. 

We are taking this time to reflect on the completion of our building project in 2016 and its positive boost in our ability to provide patient-centered care, enhance the services we can offer and attract specialists to Greene County for patient care close to home.  It’s been a very positive boost for us in many ways.

Still, health care laws and regulation changes have placed some uncertainties and unexpected financial constraints on us.  One of those constraints, which impacts providers all over the state, is ramifications from the privatization of Iowa’s Medicaid program.  These include limited patient access, increased denial rates and reimbursements that are months behind.  We will end 2016 with the Medicaid MCOs owing us approximately $700,000.  We continue to voice our concerns with Iowa lawmakers and the governor, but we’re also taking a deep breath and gearing up for 2017 with new or adjusted processes and strategies to keep us fiscally healthy in the second part of the fiscal year.  We want to be as proactive as we can.

Change — whether temporary or permanent — is hard on all of us, especially when it impacts our finances.  I am grateful for all medical center employees who are working together to make our changes successful.  It helps to recognize we are offering the best patient-centered care in a facility that offers the best of efficiencies, privacy and accessibility.  Providers and specialists on campus are committed to providing the best care to every patient, every time.  We are Always Here, Always Caring. 

It also helps to be able to welcome a new UnityPoint Clinic physician.  Dr. Susan Harte will join the team on January 9.  Dr. Harte is settling into her Jefferson home, and I am confident the community will welcome her as well.

And, finally, it helps to know our community is behind our success — every step of the way.  Thank you for your support and for entrusting us with your care.                                               

Always Here, Always Caring,
Carl Behne, CEO