Back in black: Adams Health

    Adams Health Network Chief Fnancial Officer Dane Wheeler ticked off several well-documented items Tuesday night to the AHN board of trustees at their monthly meeting as he discussed the fiscal health of the organization.
    "We're in a down economy, costs continue to rise, we've managed to successfully recruit several new physicians, and we've had several projects to upgrade our facilities (most notably the renovation of the "B" wing at the Woodcrest Nursing Center at which the hospital will be relocating its Extended Care Unit at the first of the year)." he said.
    And yet, despite those costly projections, the hospital reversed a trend from last month to show a positive bottom line, albeit to the tune of just $3,624.
    The increase in the financial picture overturns a deficit of nearly $100,000 as of the end of September.
    For the number crunchers, the hospital has spent $41,899,758 in the first 10 months of 2011, but has taken in $41,903,382. The income figure is broken down into $40,863,352 of operating revenue and $1,040,030 of non-operating revenue.
    Nearly one-third of the expenses have gone for professional services, with $14,267,062 having been dispensed in that account. That is more than twice the money allocated to the next highest account, which is bad debt: $6,600,307.
    Wheeler said his department is currently working on the 2012 budget and it should be ready to be presented to trustees at their December meeting.
    Trustees also looked at other ways to save money and discussed a new insurance package for the hospital for next year. Proposals were sought from five different agencies and one figure — reportedly from a Fort Wayne agency that has a strong background in dealing with health care agencies — appeared to be poised to save officials money.
    One saving was the fact that instead of having to post $200,000 for a letter of credit for workman's compensation, the new bid requires only a letter for $50,000, thus freeing up $150,000 in cash for the hospital. A separate bid from the company currently writing the insurance on the fleet of hospital vehicles was also entertained by the board as another way to cut costs since commission fees were drastically reduced.
    In other action, statistics provided to the trustees Tuesday night showed the following for October: 186 admissions (1,810 for the year), 28 admissions to the Extended Care Unit (303 for 2011), 9 new patients at Woodcrest Nursing Center (62 for the year).
    Also, 25 babies were born (150 for the year), 155 surgeries (1,551 for the year), 5,825 outpatients visited the hospital (69,173 for the year), and there were 920 emergency room visits (9,371 for the year).