Sunday, Dec 2, 2012
Garza County News

Photo by Rosa Latimer

Even though Dr. Ben Edwards' name is still on the Garza County Health Clinic sign, the popular Post physician has left the clinic to begin a local nutritional medicine practice. Dr. Chad Gray is now the clinic physician.

GCHCD Approves Staff Bonuses

Construction plans on hold

Published June 21, 2012 @ 5:01 p.m.

The first item on the agenda for the regular meeting of the Garza County Health Care District Board of Directors June 21 was a discussion relating to bonuses for the nursing staff, medical assistants and front desk staff at the clinic to help compensate for the recent changes at the clinic including operating “short staffed.”

Paul Acreman, CEO of Physicians Network Services, who contracts with GCHCD to operate Garza County Health Clinic suggested bonus amounts totaling $1500.00 to be distributed among the staff.  “We appreciate the help [of the staff] during this time,” said Board President Wayne Edwards. 

“I know how hard it has been,” added Board member Wyvonne Kennedy.  “I think we need to move it up.”  Kennedy then suggested doubling the bonus amounts.  The Board approved a total amount of $3000 for staff bonuses.

Referring to the recent departure of Dr. Ben Edwards from the clinic, a representative of the staff told the Board that she “wished we had been told more.”  She further stated that she felt the change could have been handled better.  “Especially in a small town we need to compromise.  It was hard to come to work Monday morning and someone you’ve worked with for seven years is gone.” 

Wayne Edwards responded by explaining that the situation changed week to week.  “This was a very difficult situation, but now we have a new doctor that will become part of the community.  I couldn’t be more pleased with how it turned out.”

“Now we have both,” Kennedy added, referring to the clinic and Dr. Edwards’ nutritional medicine practice in Post. 

When asked about the planned construction at the clinic, the Board president said,  “With all of the transition we’ve experienced, the construction is on hold until we see how things go with these changes.  I don’t want to look at it for 6 months.”

Mr. Acreman presented a report on the local clinic for May stating that visits “were about the same as last year.”  However, procedures were “off about 600;” charges were down $20,000 and collections were down $34,000.

Brandy Fannon, GCHCD Administrator presented the monthly indigent care report:  3 clients are currently on the program; approximately $7,700 was expended in May and the program has spent $122,000 of the $150,000  allocated for the budget year which ends in September.

The Board reviewed the Garza Central Tax Appraisal proposed 2012/2013 budget.  Board members had questions about some increases in the proposed budget and asked Fannon to clarify line items relating to insurance, retirement and postage machine expenses.  GCHCD portion of the new budget would be $7221.00/month compared to the current $6805.00/month

In other business, the board approved the minutes of the May 24 regular meeting, financial statements and payment of monthly bills.

The next GCHCD board meeting is at Noon, July 19 at the Garza County Health Clinic.

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