Asset Management Policy Adopted During HCHD Meeting

By Will Johnson

Messenger Reporter

HOUSTON COUNTY – The Houston County Hospital District (HCHD) Board of Directors met in a regularly scheduled meeting highlighted by the approval of an assets management policy.

The assets management policy and disposition of surplus and salvage property policies had been addressed in two previous meetings. In the earlier meetings, the board had stressed it needed to have the policies in place in order to receive an unmodified or unqualified opinion (highest rating available) on the HCHD outside audit.

Board member Karen Duncan presented the members with copies of the policies developed by the assets management policy committee.

After a brief discussion on the need for the guidelines, Board Member Dina Pipes suggested the oversight of asset management duties should be assigned to a particular board officer. Duncan countered with the possibility of designating the finance committee chair to serve in the oversight role.

Eventually, the policies were approved and it was further decided to amend it at a later date.

As the meeting continued, Board President Barbara Crowson addressed the HCHD response to a letter from Houston County in regard to past ambulance expenses.

“At the present time, I am seeking the board’s permission to allow our attorney, Robert Spurck, to pursue the concerns we have about that letter. The concerns are that some of the documentation in the letter from the county wanting us to pay for some past ambulance expenses, according to our attorney, his documentation and the county’s documentation are not in agreement. He would like to send them a letter asking them to come forward with the documentation they have. What I am asking the board is to approve going forward in an attempt to get this thing settled,” Crowson said.

The documentation matter passed unanimously.   

Prior to the asset management discussion, Board member and Chair of the Ambulance Committee Dina Pipes presented the ambulance report to those in attendance.

Pipes reported there were 290 calls for service during the month of September with 198 transports. She added there were 40 cancellations and 52 refusals. The helicopter was requested to be put on standby 29 times with four flights. There were also two requests for mutual aid.

The transport destination of the ambulance showed Crockett Medical Center (CMC) with 56 percent; Palestine Regional with 17 percent; Woodland Heights with 15 percent; CHI Lufkin with seven percent; and Huntsville with five percent.

Following the ambulance report, CMC CEO Tommy Johnson provided the board with the hospital report. He reported there were 596 visits to the emergency room with 47 admissions. In-patients days were at 70 and there were 576 procedures in the radiology department, with 34 mammograms. Johnson added there were 16 MRIs, along with 573 physical therapy visits. The Rural Health Clinic reported 227 visits, along with 27 telehealth visits. There were also 2,863 different lab studies and 31 surgical procedures.   

In other matters brought before the HCHD Board:

  • The minutes from meetings held on Sept. 15 and Oct. 1 were approved.
  • The HCHD Financial Report for September was approved.

Will Johnson may be contacted via e-mail at [email protected].  

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