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I can't remember reading a lette ...

Posted Nov 10 2008 4:24pm

I can't remember reading a letter addressing the community like this before.  If you read the entire letter, it sounds like he's putting everything right out on the line with the need for contracted physician services, which have not been allowed and is pretty straight forward about asking the management of the board and MDs to begin governing. The failure of the chief of staff not being a team leader, amongst other issues are also listed.  Both the management and physicians appear to have failed the system and community - nobody is winning this battle. 

The current medical staff bylaws do not allow a temporary physician to simply provide hospital emergency on-call services at the hospital. On the map, Blythe is on the border of California and Arizona off interstate 10 and is a relatively small community in each state so the fact that emergency on call physicians are not allowed by the bylaws just does not make sense, much less the fact that the hospital will lose Medicare services.  BD

Hospital CEO addresses letter to community
Richard Fallon,CEO, Palo Verde Hospital
I remain optimistic but very concerned with the events at the hospital.
This hospital organization is young, many of our managers are new to the hospital and some are new to management. We are financially fragile and have many needs as a hospital. We have many that rely on your hospital for their health care, their livelihood and their life.

We have had employees hospitalized over the stressful emotion of situations at the hospital. The tension in the hospital is so thick you could cut it with a knife. People are concerned for their jobs and their ability to support their families if something should happen to the hospital or if they are targeted for elimination for expressing their opinion.

Hospital management was contacted by the Centers for Medicare Services in San Francisco on Thursday of last week and notified that because of the lack of surgical on-call coverage, we are in violation of not only our hospital licensure but also our contract with the federal Medicare program.

As I see it, the only choices we have for the long term is to either close the Surgery Department at the hospital, which we can do under state law and still keep the hospital, including the Emergency Department, operating, or the medical staff has to change their bylaws to allow us to cover the hospital services with temporary contracted physicians.

Then again, it pains me to see patients being transferred for medical reasons or worse yet, sent home when the physicians would have admitted them just six weeks ago.

This still leaves the original issues of hospital management control to be resolved. What is painfully obvious is that the current chief of staff will and has put the hospital's survival in jeopardy in an attempt to force his will upon the Board.

Your chief of staff has failed you and the community with his leadership.
His lack of basic social demeanor, refusal to communicate and heavy handedness has given the medical staff a black eye in this community by jeopardizing the entire health care infrastructure.  He may be a good surgeon but he is not a team player or a manager, and he certainly is not a leader.

This hospital is very quickly running out of cash and decisions need to be made.

Source:  Hospital CEO addresses letter to community

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