Chairman’s Meeting: February 17, 2021

Chairman’s Meeting: February 17, 2021



Indian River County Hospital District Conference Room/ Zoom

February 17, 2021

10:00 AM


TRUSTEES:                           Marybeth Cunningham                       Barbara Bodnar

Ann Marie McCrystal                         Allen Jones

VIA ZOOM:                           Karen Deigl                                          Michael Weiss

STAFF:                                   Ann Marie Suriano                             Jennifer Frederick

Kate Voss                                             Jennifer Peshke, Esq.


Convene Meeting- Marybeth Cunningham, Chairman

Mrs. Cunningham convened the Chairman’s meeting of the IRCHD Board of Trustees at 10:00 AM by welcoming those participating via Zoom and in person.


VNA Semi Annual Update- Patricia Knipper, Director of Strategic Special Projects

Ms. Knipper provided an update concerning the VNA and its District funded programs for the period of October, 2020 – January, 2021. To date, the District has provided a total of $188,386 in funding to the VNA. She provided a service review and quality scores for the hospice program. With the volumes for the hospice program being relatively low, Mrs. Cunningham questioned why the volumes were low. Ms. Knipper explained that lack of public knowledge about the program, could attribute to this. They have been working with physicians and families to educate them of the benefits of hospice care. She believes that through this education, they will see the number of participants grow. She further provided an update concerning the home health program and its outcomes. Ms. Knipper then discussed the Mobile Health Clinic, which after upgrades and repairs, was back on the road in December. The unit also has a new manager, Ms. Elizabeth Adams, who has been a great addition to the team. Currently the unit is providing flu shots, minor sick visits and physicals, along with health education and outreach. She reviewed data concerning mobile unit patient visits, zip code analysis, and patient satisfaction. Additionally, she discussed the VNA’s positive change program and the new initiatives they are working on. They are now offering a pilot program with Substance Awareness Center. She reviewed the 11-week schedule that encompasses the program and what topics are covered and discussed. Lastly, she discussed her work with Together for Health group, which has now doubled in size since the beginning of the pandemic. This group brings together community leaders who share information and resources to address concerns within the community concerning vulnerable individuals and families.


Program Liaison Report- Jennifer Frederick

Mrs. Frederick stated that the 2021 Federal Poverty Guidelines have been published and went into effect January 15. They were forwarded to all the funded agencies and will be use in the qualifying process until the end of the year. The District plans to hold a workshop for the funded agencies to provide a refresher course on the District financial assistance database. This will give an opportunity for District staff and the funded agencies to discuss any issues they are experiencing with the database. This will also provide instruction and guidance for any funded agencies with new employees who have not been formally trained on how to navigate the database and District expectations. This workshop will take place on March 11 and be offered in person and via Zoom. Additionally, Mrs. Frederick informed the Trustees that the District’s funding applications for fiscal year 21-22 will be sent out next week. The completed applications are due back to the District by March 26th and the budget presentation meetings will begin in April. The Trustees agreed to only hold meetings for new agencies requesting funding or agencies requesting funding for new programs or initiatives. Further, Mrs. Frederick indicated she has attended the first Community Health Needs Assessment meeting held by Cleveland Clinic Indian River Hospital. CCIRH is required to complete a health needs assessment every three years and has invited community leaders to participate in the process. Mrs. Cunningham is also participating in the process on behalf of the District. She will provide updates to the Trustees throughout the duration of her participation. Lastly, she informed the board that the ribbon cutting ceremony for the new Source Dignity Bus is March 17th from 5-6 PM. The Dignity Bus provides safe, temporary overnight accommodation to those sleeping rough in Indian River County. Its aim is to get people off the street and keep them safe and healthy until they can get back on their feet.


Conflict of Interest Review- Jennifer Peshke, Esq.

Mrs. Peshke provided an overview of the PowerPoint presentation she created which addressed the Trustee’s requirement to comply with the Code of Ethics of Publicly Elected officials and the Districts Conflict of Interest Policy. There was Trustee discussion concerning if a conflict would arise for Trustees serving on boards of agencies that the District funds. Mrs. Peshke indicated that if a Trustee felt there may be a conflict, they should disclose this to either she or Ann Marie. They will discuss the matter to determine if in fact there is conflict. Should it be determined that a conflict exists, the Trustee would need to announce and recuse themselves from the Board vote on the matter. However, they are still able to participate in board discussion. She stated that it is important for the Trustees to avoid situation in which there would be public perception of impropriety. Lastly, Mrs. Peshke asked the Trustees to review the Districts Code of Conduct and Ethics Guide, along with completing the Acknowledgement and Conflict of Interest Statement documents. The completed and signed documents should be returned to Ms. Voss for the Districts files.


District Employee Benefits Discussion/Recommendation- Ann Marie Suriano

Mrs. Suriano prepared a memo on this matter for the Trustees to review before today’s meeting. She stated that in the past, she has explored group insurance plans for full time District employees. However, the plans were only available for groups of 5 or more employees. She has also explored becoming a part of the Hospital, County or other local government agency’s larger group plans. The Trustees felt that they did not have the supervisory or decision-making latitude and anonymity that they currently enjoy if they went with this option; therefore, the best option was to offer a monthly taxable stipend for employees to purchase their own healthcare plans. As purchasing healthcare plans and healthcare in general has become more expensive, group plan options have become more available and to ensure that the District is remaining competitive, she began investigating further options for healthcare coverage. She has found a few plans through United Healthcare that provide for medical and behavioral health visits, telehealth, urgent care, hospitalization, prescriptions and dental care that are very affordable for the three full time employees. Mrs. Fredrick and Ms. Voss are agreeable to her recommendations as well. She asked the Trustees to consider transition from providing a monthly stipend to adding this benefit to the current employment package. There was group discussion surrounding the recommendation and the cost associated with the transition. Mr. Jones made a motion to approve the recommendation which was seconded by Mrs. Bodnar. The motion approved unanimously. Mrs. Peshke indicated that she would update the District Employee Manual to reflect this change. Mrs. Suriano stated that she plans for the group insurance to go into effect April 1, 2021 and the monthly stipend will cease at that time.


Other Business

Mrs. Suriano stated that since Mrs. Zudans has resigned from the District Board, she will no longer remain as Chair of the Gifford Health Center Advisory Committee. It was further discussed that while the Gifford Health Center Advisory Committee has fulfilled its original mission of overseeing a smooth transition of TCCH operating the Gifford Health Center, the committee has expressed the desire to meet semiannually to maintain accountability for community members and open communication for any issues that may arise. Mrs. Bodnar stated that she would like to volunteer for the position. The Trustees agreed and Ms. Voss indicated that the next meeting will take place in late spring or early summer.

Mrs. Cunningham stated that the RFP committee has selected the Cleveland Clinic’s proposal to move forward with a Mental Health Intensive Outpatient program. The group is looking into funding avenues and she notified the Trustees that they may be coming to the District in the next few months to request funding.


Public Comment & Adjourn

Mrs. Cunningham asked for public comment and there was none. The meeting was adjourned at 11:30 AM.