Pocahontas Memorial Hospital Joins Partners In Health
Marlinton, WV – The Pocahontas Memorial Hospital Board of Trustees approved spending $3100.00 to become a member of the Partners In Health Network during the board meeting Thursday night. Interim CEO Barbara Lay says the cost to PMH is actually about one quarter on the usual membership fee.
“I asked them if we could have a two-for-one; they gave us the fifty percent discount, but actually they gave the fifty percent discount of the fifty percent” says Lay. “Now I think they should know how to calculate that, so I’m going with it.”
The membership is for PMH and hospital partner Minnie Hamilton Health Systems. Lay says PMH will see the benefit of membership right away.
“Already, the value would be – we have access to a $15,000.00 grant” she says. “That money can be used for outreach. For example, our health fairs, like out Pediatric Health fairs and our community health fair; all that cost can be rolled into this grant and covered by this grant. It’s used for educational outreach, those types of activities that we want to do.”
Lay says Partners In Health was started by Charleston Area Medical Center in 1995 and includes a long list of West Virginia hospitals and clinics, including Minnie Hamilton, offering both medical and psychiatric care. Lay says there are other benefits that come with the membership.
“It makes us eligible to participate in what they call a Rapid system” she says “and that would allow us to have a computer here that will have access to [West Virginia] DHHR [Dept of Health & Human Resources] for eligibility. So if you have a patient who may be eligible for Medicaid [or] a program like that, instead of them having to go down to the DHHR office, you can do that eligibility right here. It also provides access to their recruiting department. We’ve already used it – we’ve recruited a Pediatrician who will start in February at Minnie Hamilton.”
Lay says the partnership will also offer peer review of hospital charts for a fee. She says this is a good idea for a small hospital where it’s sometimes hard for a smaller staff to do peer review on each other. The membership is for one year and the cost can be paid in installments. Lay says the usual fee is around $12,000.00, but she says that’s negotiable.
In other business, Lay was to have presented the business plan for PMH at the meeting Thursday night. However, she says despite many long hours working on the plan, she doesn’t feel that she has enough information to present the planning tool she would like give to the board.
“Each department has submitted a business plan [and] I think they’d like to see for us going forward” she says. “I think as we develop a business plan we need to know, what do we need in capital investment. This really bothers me, because if you can’t write a business plan you don’t know where you’re going. I’m still working on it.”
Board members agree they can wait a bit longer to get a good plan.