September Board Chair Report
The hospital saw a small but steady stream of Covid-19 cases last month, Chief Medical Officer Sabrina Kidd, MD, reported at the monthly District Board meeting last week. She said it is a reminder that Covid-19 remains a concern in our community and reinforces the need to get vaccinated and follow recommended safety protocols, such as wearing a mask.
Dr. Kidd said that all hospital services remain open and readily available, although new regulations require all non-patient visitors to the hospital for any reason to show proof of full vaccination or a negative Covid test within 72 hours prior to the visit in order to enter. The hospital continues to adhere to the highest safety practices to ensure that community members can safely get the healthcare they need.
She reported that new state orders require hospitals to have all medical staff and employees be vaccinated by September 30 unless they are granted a medical or religious exemption, which then requires twice-weekly testing. She said that SVH has surpassed most hospitals in terms of compliance with 94 percent of hospital staff and 99 percent of medical staff vaccinated to-date.
Chief Financial Officer Ken Jensen reported at the meeting that use of hospital services for routine and discretionary care has been increasing in recent months.
Given the continuing situation with Covid-19, the board decided it will continue to hold meetings via Zoom at least through year end. We encourage everyone to get vaccinated and continue to show caution in their behavior, such as wearing a mask outside of the home.
UCSF Affiliation Continues To Grow
CEO John Hennelly reported that the hospital continues to explore ways to benefit from our affiliation with UCSF Health. He said the hospital is currently discussing ways to access UCSF’s expertise in several new areas of care, and he will report to the board on this in the coming months.
As I have mentioned previously, our affiliation with UCSF grew out of a desire to improve quality of care, increase access to specialists, strengthen the hospital financially, especially through increased use of services, and better serve the healthcare needs of our community, all of which is occurring.
We recently benefitted from UCSF’s support in improving our stroke care, supporting our Covid-19 response, making specialists available to Sonoma Valley patients through telehealth, and recovering from last year’s cyberattack. As we move ahead, SVH will play a larger role in UCSF’s Bay Area network by providing primary and secondary care services to UCSF patients throughout the North Bay.
Next Board Meeting
The next regular District Board meeting will be held on Thursday, October 7, at 6 pm. For safety reasons, Board meetings will continue to be held via video conferencing. The public is encouraged to participate, and video conferencing details are available on the Hospital website. Public comment is always welcome.
Chair of the SVHCD Board of Directors