The Ritzville Adams County Journal - Eastern Adams County's Only Independent Voice Since 1887

Reports from the Board Chairman


Last updated 2/22/2018 at Noon

There are several items to report, and all of them are good news.

For one, the Grand Columbia Health Alliance (of which your District is one of five member Districts) has hired a Compliance consultant whose availability will be shared among the member Districts.

That is an immediate benefit for our District, but is also just a beginning toward various assistance services that the group will be providing in future, services that would not make economic sense for any one of the Districts on its own.

EARH is looking forward to many sorts of benefits from this new inter-local group as it comes up to speed.

Worth noting, as there seems to have been some erroneous reports floating about, is that your District remains officially certified for providing appropriate levels of emergency medical support.

More particularly, we remain a Level V Trauma Center (and are not due to reapply until Fall of 2019), as well as a Level II Cardiac Center and a Level III Stroke Center (both through Jan. 15, 2021).

We hope none of you will ever need that sort of care, but if you ever do, we are there for you.

The District recently purchased a new ambulance, and it is in service. We will no doubt need to replace some of our other ambulances over the next few years, and District management is planning on accumulating funding for those future needs.

On Jan. 9, the Northwest Rural Health Network, another regional mutual-cooperation group to which EARH belongs, voted to enter into a contract for tele-psychiatry services.

In our case, we will provide a room and staff for the patients; initially, it will be only a modest income-producer, but the important thing is that we will now be able to offer a long-needed service to our community.

On another note, the District is in the process of hiring on three patient-account representatives; that should enable us to take a substantial bite out of the backlog of AR billings.

Speaking of money, the state and federal funding for the Washington Rural Hospital Access Preservation group members, which includes EARH, should start flowing soon after mid-year; it should have already begun, but there were some administrative glitches as the state level (now apparently all ironed out).

Last, but far from least, a word about the East Adams County Hospital Foundation.

For over a quarter-century, the Foundation has been of great service and value to the District, as well as entertaining the community with its annual fun-for-all fundraiser.

But right now, through the normal processes of attrition, the Foundation finds itself seriously short of active members.

For anyone with a desire to be of real help to our community, volunteering to join the Foundation is a great way to be that help.

I vigorously urge anyone with the volunteer spirit to join up; the Foundation’s next meeting will be on Thursday, March 8, at 5:30 p.m. in the downstairs conference room at the District facility in Ritzville.


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