Budget projections top $195 million for 2014

By Bob Buckel | Published Saturday, November 30, 2013
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At its meeting Monday night, the Wise Regional Health System board of directors approved a budget of nearly $196 million for 2014.

With expenses projected at just over $186 million – 25 percent more than in 2013 – a net operating profit of $10.15 million was budgeted for the system, which operates hospitals in Decatur and Bridgeport as well as several ancillary facilities.

Revenue was projected to rise by 20 percent over 2013.

The budget numbers were based on the Bridgeport hospital continuing to operate as a full-service facility – but that situation changed as of Tuesday when it was announced that inpatient services would be suspended there effective Dec. 1. (See story on page 1.)

Bridgeport was projected to generate $14.77 million in adjusted revenue for 2014, with expenses of $17.4 million – a $2.6 million loss. That situation will change after the cutback announced Tuesday.

Also on the horizon in the coming year is the projected opening of the WRHS Parkway Cardiovascular and Surgical Hospital on Interstate 35 in Fort Worth. That facility is expected to open its doors in March and account for 858 outpatient surgical procedures in nine months of operation in 2014.

With the start-up expenses incurred prior to opening, Parkway is projected to break even in 2014 but should become profitable in 2015 with a higher percentage of private-pay patients than the Decatur hospital.

More good financial news came in an announcement that Wise Regional Health Foundation will purchase a “Hologic Selenia Dimension” digital mammography unit to replace existing equipment that is seven years old.

The new piece of equipment should increase image quality and provide better service for WRHS patients.

The machine will cost $245,000. The board expressed its appreciation of the Foundation board for its efforts to help with the cost of necessary equipment for the hospital and community.


Directors also were told that the hospital this month fully implemented its electronic medical record system. Physicians are now using the electronic system to manage their patients’ care within the hospital.

With the first round of the hospital’s construction bonds callable in 2014, discussions are underway about refinancing them to achieve an interest savings.

CEO Steve Summers told the board the refinancing discussion is ongoing and said they would be asked to participate in those meetings in January. The goal is to attain an investment-grade rating on existing bonds.

The board voted to retain the existing officer positions for next year, with Andrew Sanford as president, Jay Bearden as vice president and Debbie Waggoner as secretary.

They also approved several new appointments to the medical staff, following the recommendations of Wise Regional’s Medical Executive Committee.

New appointments included:

  • Clay H. Brown, MD, (consulting) anesthesia;
  • Ricky Childers, DPM, (active) podiatry;
  • Stuart Connell, MD, (active) pain management;
  • Michelle Doyle-Griffith, CRNA (allied) anesthesia;
  • Patrick Evans, CRNA (allied) anesthesia;
  • Meagan Johnson, PA, (allied) surgery;
  • Khuram Khan, DO (consulting) anesthesia;
  • Sharon McLemore, NP (allied) family medicine;
  • Natalia Tan, PA-C (allied) surgery.

Summers provided an administrative report that included updates on the hospital’s continuing support of the Wise County Youth Fair Champions Club and a review of an article that discusses the national health care scene.

He also gave the board an overview from board meetings of both the Wise Regional Health Foundation and Wise Clinical Care Associates.

The board also:

  • delegated the human resources committee the authority to establish an Executive Compensation Plan
  • in consideration of the upcoming holiday, moved its December meeting date to Dec. 16

The board approved the following on the consent agenda:

  • A management services and equipment lease agreement with MediVest Denton LP, a Texas limited partnership (“MVP”) for MRI imaging services in Denton.
  • The sale of CT currently located at WRHS freestanding imaging center in Bridgeport for $65,000.

The next meeting is 6 p.m. Monday, Dec. 16, in the administration board room at 609 Medical Center Drive in Decatur.

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