SMH hires 2 physicians, notes hospital still without debt

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SHERIDAN — Sheridan Memorial Hospital Chief of Staff Dr. Sara Smith announced at Wednesday’s board meeting that the hospital has hired two new physicians.

Dr. Elizabeth Brown is an OB/GYN who came to Sheridan from Thermopolis. She completed her medical training through the WWAMI Regional Medical Education program, which enables students from Washington, Wyoming, Alaska, Montana and Idaho to receive top-notch medical training at the University of Washington with the intent of returning to their home state to practice.

The program has been recognized as the nation’s best primary care, family medicine and rural medicine training school by U.S. News & World Report for the past 23 years.

Dr. William Taylor III is a radiologist who received his fellowship training in interventional radiology at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee. Taylor is from Texas and completed his residency there.

Also at Wednesday’s meeting, Controller Susan Novak reported on the year-end financial condition of the hospital, which began its new fiscal year July 1.

Novak noted that once again SMH is operating with no debt, a feat for a free-standing county hospital that receives no mill levy taxes and is not a critical access hospital. Critical access hospitals receive cost-based reimbursement from Medicare but must meet certain requirements to do so, including having no more than 25 inpatient beds.

Novak also said the hospital had a net income for fiscal year 2014 of approximately $1.7 million, compared to last year’s loss of $2.7 million. At the same time, bad debt increased and the hospital had a net operating loss of $1.6 million.

Hospital CEO Mike McCafferty emphasized that the goal is to have a positive bottom line coming from operations rather than non-operating income such as investments, which is what pushed the hospital above the positive bottom line for the year.

“Our goal is to have positive net operations, and we didn’t. We want to try to break even or hit that 2 percent profit mark,” McCafferty said.

Moving forward, the hospital will continue to cut expenses, especially in supplies, in order to break even or make profit and maintain itself as the unique hospital it is, McCafferty said.

In other business, the board approved an unbudgeted equipment purchase to replace a microtome, which is used in pathology to thinly slice tissues for examination under a microscope, that broke down earlier this year. The new microtome will cost $16,312.

McCafferty also told the board that interviews continue to find a new chief financial officer after former CFO Ed Johlman’s resignation in June. He added that as the hospital grows and the scope of federal regulations increases, he is working on recruiting additional leadership in order to meet increased demands and establish more effective systems and processes around the hospital.



By |July 31st, 2014|

About the Author:

Hannah Sheely is the digital content editor at The Sheridan Press. She has lived in Colorado and Montana but loves her sunny home state of Wyoming best. She joined The Press staff in February 2013.