Hospital district board focuses on staffing

From the Sublette County Hospital District
Posted 6/13/24

PINEDALE — The Sublette County Hospital District’s elected board tackled a full agenda including future staffing plans, CMS staffing mandates and more at its May 22 meeting. The …

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Hospital district board focuses on staffing


PINEDALE — The Sublette County Hospital District’s elected board tackled a full agenda including future staffing plans, CMS staffing mandates and more at its May 22 meeting. The construction process continues on schedule for the future hospital and new Sublette Center.

The board gave kudos to some of the staff, including congratulating Kory Albert for 10 years of service to the District and Brittany White for 5 years of service. The board also acknowledged Kristy Bartlett, RN for winning the DAISY Award for excellence in nursing. Finally, Courtney Meisner was celebrated for completing her education at Casper College and finishing the MLTK Med Tech program. Meisner works as a med tech in the lab of the new hospital.

Planning for the future hospital

The majority of the board meeting focused on gearing up for the future hospital. Interim administrator Lindsey Bond provided the board with a Road Map to Licensure,” a document that tracks the path to getting the license for the future Critical Access Hospital (CAH). Adams PMC, the new Owners Rep, is working on a supporting document to detail what happens from Certificate of Occupancy (CO) to the doors opening for patients. After opening to the public, the facility will undergo a series of surveys before it receives the final CAH designation.

The board agreed to start in-depth conversations about what they want for a staffing model as the organization heads towards having a hospital. The hospital district recently added new, required departments, including Quality, Facilities, and Compliance. New service lines, such as Pharmacy and Memory Care will be coming as it gets closer to the doors opening. These are big-picture matters that the board is carefully considering as it plans the staffing of the future facility.

Medical Director Dr. David Burnett and Emergency Services Medical Director Ryan Grove are developing staffing models specifically for the future hospital, urgent care and emergency room. The details of how providers and nursing staff are scheduled between these three entities could be handled in a myriad of ways.  Much thought is going into deciding upon the best model for Sublette County patients and staff.

The board also approved hiring a Revenue Cycle Management consulting company called Vestra to help prepare the district for cost-based reimbursement and assess the current billing practices.  The board stressed that it is always seeking ways to improve the billing process.

Sublette Center

On April 22, the Centers for Medicare/Medicaid (CMS) finalized new minimum staffing standards for nursing homes which require a certain number of CNAs and RNs to work each shift. Administrator Dawn Walker reported the Sublette Center is examining the new ruling, which will have a staggered implementation, and planning to adjust staffing schedules accordingly as required. As of last month, the census for the Sublette Center was 37 residents. Walker praised Matt Strong, Care Coordination Program Manager, for providing excellent follow-up care to patients who leave the Sublette Center. Walker noted, Having Matt jump in and take over the follow-up care really benefits everyone. It improves the health of our community and helps give patients excellent care in the comfort of their own homes.”
Patients interested in enrolling in the new Care Coordination program can get more information from their primary care provider.

Lastly, the board approved the purchase of a new activities bus for the Sublette Center for $58,900.

Construction updates

Layton reported that construction on the new facility is between 35 to 40 percent complete. The board approved several small construction adjustments, including a dock lift, some owner-provided equipment, a signage design and architect invoices. The board also approved a low-voltage package, which includes security, internet, TVs, cameras, access control and more.  Finally, it approved five change orders all involving Laytons contingency funding, including a plumbing adjustment, laundry chute, roof access hatch, skylight and a parking lot change. Construction continues on schedule. The board was given a construction budget update by Adams PMC and had no concerns. Board chair Tonia Hoffman thanked everyone for their hard work and dedication to the project.

Sublette County Hospital District, Critical Access Hospital Pinedale