The hospital board addressed several topics at its September 7 meeting which I’d like to share with you in this report.
South Lot Update
As a reminder, the South Lot was purchased through a two-year loan from a private lender in August 2016 and contains a required parking lot. For the past year, we have considered many options for the additional 2.83 acres of land. It was decided in June, 2017 to sell this portion of the South Lot. With the sale of the land, the hospital can pay off the loan and reduce debt.
The District was fortunate to have two solid final proposals to consider, and after thorough review and vetting by the Board’s ad hoc committee, DeNova Builders was selected based on better overall financial parameters. We look forward to continued negotiations with DeNova and their ability to provide quality homes that are so badly needed in Sonoma. They have partnered with the Housing Land Trust of Sonoma County and will work with them to offer a preference to hospital employees for the required affordable units, and to ensure that the affordable units remain affordable in perpetuity.
On a related topic, the board received a letter from Simon Blattner saying he was unable to pursue plans to use the property for an Affordable Housing Project, noting the lot was determined to not be feasible for that purpose. We would like to applaud his intentions to pursue affordable housing in Sonoma and wish him well.
Business Development, Marketing and Community Outreach
The Hospital’s Business Development, Marketing and Community Relations team reviewed accomplishments for the past year, from which I’d like to share a few highlights.
Business Development reported the hospital has seen an increase in net revenue of $1.87 million in FY17, double the goal set for the year. Due in part to the successful recruitment of new specialist physicians, the hospital has seen significant revenue increases in bariatrics, pain management, general surgery, and podiatry services, along with an increase in referrals from state contracts.
Marketing discussed the continued growth in bariatric (weight loss) surgery through expanded efforts to market services regionally within a five-county area. This initiative will be strengthened in the coming year by a digital advertising campaign on Facebook and Google search. Marketing also is focusing on introducing new physicians and surgeons to the community through educational programs and events.
Community Relations discussed expansion of community outreach efforts, including partnerships with many local organizations, noting that events which the hospital sponsored or participated in drew 2,700 people in the past year, and hospital staff donated 1,424 hours last year to volunteer at hospital health events and provide support for community nonprofits.
The board passed a resolution for Adoption and Implementation of Design Build Construction for the planned Outpatient Diagnostic Center. The hospital has identified the need to replace the CT Scanner and MRI within a few years, and expand the imaging department for greater efficiency and to meet codes. Given the long lead time to gain state approvals, it was decided to begin design of the new diagnostic center now. There is no financial impact on the hospital as the Foundation has agreed to raise the funds for this project.
The board approved recommendations from a committee to update the CEO objectives for the coming fiscal year. These objectives are used in the annual review of the CEO and to measure and reward performance through an incentive compensation plan. The changes revise how the board measures CEO performance in the areas of patient satisfaction, patient outcomes, staff satisfaction and engagement, hospital financial viability, and improved community health.
In closing, I’d like to note that the agenda items discussed at District board and committee meetings can be found in the meeting packets available on the hospital website (at sonomavalleyhospital.org under the “Health Care District” section).
Board meetings are open and public comment is welcome and encouraged. Most board meetings are streamed live on our local cable station, SVTV, with recordings of past meetings also available for viewing. The next board meeting is scheduled for October 5, 2017, at 6:00 pm at the Community Meeting Room, 177 First St. West, in downtown Sonoma.
Jane Hirsch, RN, MS
Chair of the SVHCD Board of Directors