Middlesex Hospitals hold Annual General Meeting (AGM)

The Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Middlesex Hospital Alliance (MHA) Board of Directors was held Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Auditors from the firm BDO Canada LLP presented the audited financial statements for the Corporations of Four Counties Health Services (FCHS) and Strathroy Middlesex General Hospital (SMGH). The total margin surplus at FCHS was $49,332, and Strathroy ended the year with a total margin surplus of $15,334 for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2012.

Cheryl Waters, Board Chair, talked about the achievements of the two Hospitals over the last year. She pointed out the success of the collaborative effort between FCHS and SMGH in the recruitment of medical staff. Dr. Vipan Jain, a new General Surgeon, joined the medical staff in August of 2011. Dr. Jain performs endoscopy and general surgical procedures such as gall bladder removal, hernia repair, colon, breast and bowel surgery. His practice specialty is in Minimally Invasive Surgical Techniques (MIT) which represents a significant addition to the general surgery program at the MHA.

The activities of the two hospitals of fiscal year 2011/12 were summarized. The active admissions at FCHS were down 10% from the previous year. Acute Inpatient days were also up 11%. Occupancy averaged 75%, up 26% over last year and was influenced by an average length of stay for the year of 9.67 days, affected by an increase in the number of palliative patients. Emergency visits are up 6% or 528 visits. Clinics saw an increase in activity over last year including Ears, Nose, Throat (ENT), Mental Health, Dermatology, Respirology and Cardiology. The strategy to emphasize Outpatient activity at the FCHS site is making progress as evidenced by the increase in Emergency and Ambulatory Care visits. In particular, Ambulatory Care visits have increased by 17% over the previous year and the MHA has targeted this area for growth over the next three years. While most clinics have been maximized, there is some room for continued growth in existing clinics and consideration is being given to the addition of new clinics. Plans are in “the works”.

In relation to SMGH, active admissions were up 4% from last year. Acute Inpatient days were also up 3% from a year ago. Occupancy is up 7%, averaging 85% for the year. Average Length of Stay is 6.63 days, however, when ALC is excluded the average length of stay is 5.1 days. Surgical cases are up 10% over last year. Emergency visits are up 619 visits or 3% from last year. Ambulatory visits are 6% higher than last year largely due to Surgical Pre-admit, Pediatrics and Family Practice. Diabetes Education is up 789 visits or 9% over last year. Diagnostic Imaging mammography declined 2%. Under Lean initiatives there has been a shift from mammography hours to Ontario Breast Screening Program (OBSP). CT Scan is up 10% for the year. Ultrasound is up 4% and X-Ray is up 4% while ECG is up 4%. The board heard that while the hospitals are busy, especially outpatients at FCHS site and surgeries at SMGH site, it is rare that there are no beds available at the MHA Hospitals. How beds are used at MHA Hospitals is tightly controlled and monitored.

There was a brief meeting of the MHA Board following the annual General Meeting to confirm the new Officers for the Alliance. Cheryl Waters will remain as Board Chair. Ken Williams has assumed the position of Vice-Chair. Mr. Williams is a chartered accountant and has extensive consulting experience both in Canada and the United States in business planning, corporate re-organization and restructuring and change management in both the public and private sectors. Frances Ellett is the Director at Large. Ms. Ellett has many years of healthcare experience, program evaluation and business management with the Ontario Ministry of the Attorney General, the Ontario Ministry of Health and the Community Care Access Centre. Michael A. Mazza, President and CEO of the Middlesex Hospital Alliance will again serve as Secretary to the Board of Directors.

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