Special Meeting December 9, 2015, 5:15 p.m.



A special meeting of the Klickitat Valley Health (KVH) Board of Commissioners was held on Wednesday, December 9, 2015 at 5:15 p.m.. Commissioner Connie Pond was the presiding officer. A quorum was present including: Commissioners John Quinn, Jim Daniel, Mark Sigfrinius and Dennis Carver. Also present were Leslie Hiebert, CEO; Jamie Eldred, Controller; Charis Weis, Director of HR; Jeff Teal, Ph.D., Director of Safety and Compliance; Gwen Cox, Director of Risk and Quality; Josh Smith, Laboratory Manager; Dean Basse, Plant Manager; Jonathon Hatfield IT Manager; Kasey Schneider, DNS; and Barbara Bostick, Recorder.


President Connie Pond called the meeting to order at 5: 17 p.m.



Leslie Hiebert, CEO provided an overview of the Strategic Plan development process. She noted that Jodi Carona of Health Facilities Planning and Development supplied data relevant to development of the plan, the Board previously held Special Meetings to review SWOT analysis as well as creation of an updated Mission, Vision and Values statement, all keeping in mind the Triple Aim. She noted that she used the information compiled from these meetings to develop updated core goals. Leslie reported that a team met last week creating seven updated strategies and she hopes to go through those strategies at this meeting in order to get additional input from the Board before finalizing the Strategic Plan to be rolled out to Department Heads and employees in January.


Leslie reviewed each of the seven draft strategies including important points for each (please see attached) and the Board discussed each of the strategies at length.

1. Increase confidence and enhance reputation in KVH by focusing on Service and clinical excellence. Leslie noted this is where the importance of the Patient Experience comes in. Charis Weis commented that after the E-Day training a few years back, there was significant improvement in the Patient Experience. She noted that it has waned to some degree in the recent past, but that in 2016 there would be renewed focus on the Patient Experience and employee training and engagement.


Commissioner Carver noted the importance of reminding people of the good experiences. Charis commented on the importance of using social media to assist in managing the community's perception.Commissioner Quinn noted that it is important to let the community know that our staff are well trained and are consistently improving their skills. President Pond noted that it is important also to congratulate and recognize our employee's accomplishments as well.


2. Invest in, support, and develop our people to their greatest potential. Recruit and retain physicians, staff, volunteers, and board members that meet the healthcare needs of our community. Leslie noted the importance of physician leadership and investing in employees, as well as continue to support and develop the volunteer program to assist with community engagement. Commissioner noted that having a culture that embraces change is also important. Commissioner Daniel stated that it is important to draw in employees through ideas for change and encourage participation.


3. Optimize financial performance to sustain and enhance our existing services and capital, and support the development of new services. Proactively adapt to changes in reimbursement methodologies. Leslie reported that there have been critical access hospitals in our state at risk of closing. Jamie Eldred reiterated the importance of looking at charges and to make sure we are in line with our competitors and meet the future needs and expectations of consumers/patients who will be shopping for their health care. Commissioner Quinn noted that it is important that we keep up with the times and technology. Leslie commented on the importance of the collaboratives as a way of working together to bring down healthcare costs. Jamie noted that we have an advantage over some other critical access hospitals in that we also own our clinic so we have buy in and support from the clinic providers.


4. Leverage technology to improve clinical processes and outcomes, maximize efficiency and workflow, increase access to care, and improve patient and staff satisfaction. Kasey Schneider reported that Diana Trechter, Clinical Informatics nurse is going to focus on retraining nursing staff regarding systems use. She will train each employee individually and the goal is to complete the nurse's training, which will include training on the physician's side of the programs, by the end of the year in hopes that it will give them improved satisfaction with the system as well as enable them to assist the providers if they have issues. Jonathan Hatfield noted that IT will be updating the patient portal at the clinic and will implement the changes slowly to give the providers an opportunity to get used to the new systems. He noted it will change the interactions that the providers have with their patients. It was noted that this would be another example of the importance of creating a culture where change is expected and accepted. Commissioner Carver noted some concerns regarding liability in regards to online health services - telehealth etc. Gwen Cox noted that protocols related to the outcomes would need to be developed to reduce risk and liability concerns. Gwen also stated that there is great potential for mental health and psych telehealth services based on the volume of need. Commissioner Quinn commented on a potential opportunity regarding an ECHO program through OHSU. He noted that teleconferences are set up with provider participants from all over the world that allows individuals to discuss cases and network with peers. He expressed that this could be a useful tool in recruiting and retaining staff if there is opportunity to have access to peers and experts via telehealth.


5. Expand, or contract, the scope of services in areas that fit with our mission and available resources. Develop new strategies and partnerships. Leslie noted the importance of exploring opportunities to work with other larger systems and still maintain stand-alone status. She noted that these kinds of collaborations can provide for growth in our services as well as best practices information. She also noted that it is imperative that we invest in our people and equipment to accommodate and allow for growth within the perimeters of our available resources.


6. Improve and demonstrate quality. Offer programs, facilities, and technology that promote a safe environment, and enforce a culture of safety. Gwen Cox noted that one of the things she will be focusing on this coming year is working on improving quality reporting. She explained that data is much more available than in the past and that it is a powerful tool for patients and staff to see how we measure compared to other facilities in areas of safety and quality. She noted that facts such as KVH being free of hospital acquired infections for two years is important information for patients determining where they want to receive their health care. Jeff Teal commented that it is important to promote a safe environment and a culture of safety. He noted that he feels that we are ready to move forward in a positive direction in regards to safety with an active safety committee, a good team of senior leaders and line staff. He noted the area of most concern currently is security. He reported that KVH will have to use a combination of training and technology to improve employee and patient safety and security overall. Leslie noted that the care coordinator position will bring cohesiveness between the clinic and hospital and that will have a positive impact on quality as well.


7. Engage in partnership with our community to improve health status and access to care. Leslie noted the higher likelihood for improving the overall health care of our community by having groups and committees working together to address the multiple areas that have impact on healthcare outcomes. Josh Smith commented that looking at all of the elements as noted in the Healthier Washington video clip is how we can gain insight and develop a healthy community. Commissioner Quinn noted the opportunity for reaching out to children through and collaborating within the school system in areas such as smoking cessation, early intervention and early nutrition education would have potential for impacting the
community health overall. Leslie stated that we have good community partners such as Public Health and Sole to Soul Health Center, etc.

Leslie reiterated her goal to review the draft of the seven strategies with senior leaders and the board and asked that they contact her with questions or feedback. She will compile the information and finalize the plan for roll out in January 2016. Dean Basse noted that if there is a process for each item, it will get more engagement from staff and quicker. Josh Smith noted that it is important that the established processes are simplified for everyone to be able to understand.


There being no further business to come before the Board of Commissioners, a motion was made by Commissioner Carver and seconded by Commissioner Quinn to adjourn the meeting. The motion carried unanimously and the meeting adjourned at 7:09 p.m.


Minutes Approved and Signed by President M. Connie Pond and Secretary John Quinn.

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