This blog reports events and interesting tidbits from Rensselaer, Indiana and the surrounding area.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

The big meeting

I went to four meetings on Monday. Clearly the biggest and most important was the last, the public hearing or open forum on the transfer of the hospital from county ownership to the Franciscan Alliance. It attracted a crowd that is big for any sort of county meeting--the picture below was taken before the last row filled up and another row of chairs was added. The members of the County Council are seated on the left side of the tables, the hospital board and people from Franciscan Alliance in the middle, and hospital managers and the county commissioners are on the right.
Ed Dumas emceed the event. Tim Schreeg, hospital CEO gave background that was much the same as he gave in the working session in May. He was followed by the head of the Western Indiana Region of Franciscan Alliance, a Mr Wilson (I did not write down his first name). He did not add much, but mentioned that Franciscan Alliance has 13 hospitals in Illinois and Indiana stretching from Chicago to Mooresville, IN. It employs 606 physicians and its debt is rated AA.

There were a number of comments and questions from people in the audience. Several expressed support for AlternaCare, one noting that there were 14 people on the waiting list. Questions were asked about consulting physicians who were not associated with Franciscan Alliance (they will continue), hospice (no plans or desire to eliminate it), ER doctors (they will probably be contracted out as is presently done), and what the name will be. The public hearing section of the meeting then closed and the county council members asked some questions. The actual transfer of operations will probably be done on the last day of a month because that makes many things easier. I got the impression that August was the most likely month, though it could be July. There were some questions about how relations with George Ade and Park Haven nursing homes would be affected because the present relationship is for some reason based on the fact that JCH is a county hospital.

And then the three boards voted. The hospital board voted unanimously to accept the transfer of assets agreement. The County Council did likewise, as did the Commissioners. Then each of the meetings adjourned.

Everyone knew what the result of the meeting would be before it began, but it was still exciting to watch the vote. It ushers in a big change and only time will tell how that decision will affect health care in Jasper County.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

how do we find out how this change impacts patients at Geo. Ade? will their admittance to jch be compromised in any way?