Indian River County Hospital District

Chairman’s Meeting: December 18, 2019

Indian River County Hospital District
December 18, 2019
10:00 AM

TRUSTEES: Tracey Zudans Barbara Bodnar
Ann Marie McCrystal Karen Deigl
Marybeth Cunningham Allen Jones

ABSENT: Michael Weiss

STAFF: Ann Marie Suriano Jennifer Peshke, Esq.
Jennifer Frederick Kate Voss

OTHER ATTENDEES: James Large Vicki Soule
Michelle Genz

Convene Meeting – Marybeth Cunningham, Chairwoman

Mrs. Cunningham convened the Chairman’s meeting of the IRCHD at 10:00 AM by welcoming those in attendance.

Gifford Health Center Advisory Committee Update- Tracey Zudans

Ms. Zudans provided an update concerning the Gifford Health Center Advisory Committee. She reported that yesterday’s discussion included the center’s patient volumes and no-show rates. Patient volumes continue to increase, while the no show rate is declining. It was determined that the decline in the no show rate was due to better follow-up communication with the patients. Further, there was discussion surrounding the Patient Advocate position. Ms. Zudans stated that many qualified candidates have applied, but only a small number of those are from the Gifford community, which was a requirement through the RFP. The position criteria has been evaluated and amended to ensure that the most qualified individual is chosen, rather than just choosing someone based on their residency. Additionally, the VNA mobile unit continues to see many patients and Ms. Knipper has hired an assistant to help with data collection and patient interviews. Lastly, she stated that the committee will meet again in January and discuss the frequency of their meetings and direction of the group, in the year 2020.

Program Liaison Update- Jennifer Frederick

Ms. Frederick provided her report and reviewed data concerning the District’s financial assistance program. From the beginning of the fiscal year, 460 new applications have been entered into the system. 690 applications have expired and 219 renewal applications have been processed. Since the District amended its financial assistance policy to include residents who fall between 150% -200% of the Federal Poverty Level, an additional 61 applications were approved. Further, Ms. Frederick prepared a report on TCCH visit comparisons, by service. She is also tracking who is visiting the Gifford Health Center, by zip code. The Trustees requested to have a more consistent reporting process on the District’s financial assistance data base, so that they may receive the most relevant information each month. Ms. Frederick stated that she will work to prepare the same.

Board Self-Evaluation Review- Ann Marie Suriano, Executive Director

Ms. Suriano stated that she reviewed the Trustees’ board self-evaluations and prepared an outline of the responses. Areas which need improvement from the Board Governance or Board oversite of Administration include:

1. Formal new board member orientation;
2. District Bylaws review and revision schedule;
a. Committee structure with Board representation to fulfill responsibilities.
3. Board making decisions that should be made by the Executive Director;
4. Board timely receipt of meeting notices, agendas, and advance meeting materials;
5. Content of funded agency semi-annual report;
6. Formal meeting structure that follows Robert’s Rules of Order; and
7. Board opportunities to communicate with the community on access to healthcare and Public Health needs.

Ms. Suriano is recommending the following to address those concerns:

1. The Executive Director and District counsel will review and amend the current Bylaws. Changes will be made in redline for the Trustees to review and solicit additional changes. Once reviewed by all, the Bylaws will be approved at the next meeting.
2. Executive Director and Program Liaison will formulate an outline and content proposal for new board members orientation. Approve through District counsel and seek board approval at the following regular meeting by May, 2020.
3. Administration, District counsel and one Trustee will form a committee to create a small set of written policies and procedures giving certain authorities to employee positions of the District and delineating board meeting conduct. Presented, discussed, and approved by the full board by August, 2020.
4. Chairman or designee, Executive Director and Program Liaison reengage with the IRC Department of Health to understand needs and how to partner collaboratively.
5. Create calendar for Trustees to tour the agencies and organize community speaking opportunities

Trustee Discussion-

Ms. Cunningham reported that she and Ms. Suriano met again with Dr. Packard from the IRC School District. They discussed statistics relative to mental health, self-harm, and Baker Acts with the students in the school system. Additionally, Cleveland Clinic Indian River and the IRC School District will be meeting in January to discuss the same, and how they can better support these issues. Additionally, Cleveland Clinic is now working to amend the Baker Act process. Currently the process has the patient waiting in the emergency department with a law enforcement officer, sometimes for an extended period of time, before being admitted into the Behavioral Health Center which can be traumatic to the patient. The new policy would allow the patient to be assessed at the Behavioral Health Center, and if necessary be directly admitted, which provides better patient care.

Ms. Deigl informed the Trustees she is working with Ann Posey on the mental health and substance use gaps that are becoming clear relative to the Public Guardianship program. She will update the Trustees with more information when it becomes available.

Ms. Zudans recommended that the District invite the other County Government Organizations to discuss information relative to the mental health issues within the school district, so that everyone is aware of the gaps and can work collaboratively towards long term solutions.

The meeting was adjourned at 11:00 AM



William P Cooney MD is an orthopedic surgeon (retired) who has been a resident of Vero Beach since 2004. He practiced orthopedic surgery at Indian River Medical Center from 2006-2015 within the orthopedic practice of Prosports. He served on the IRMC Foundation for four years. Prior to this, he was a Professor of Orthopedics at Mayo Clinic in Rochester Minnesota, Chair of the Division of Hand Surgery and Vice president of the Department of Orthopedic Surgery. He served as the Vice Chairman of the Mayo Clinic Development Department. He has been President of the American Society for Surgery of the Hand, Orthopedic Research and Education Foundation, Consultant at Shrine Hospital systems. He was editor in chief of the Journal of Orthopedic Surgery and co-editor of the Journal of Hand Surgery. He held grants in hand and wrist surgery sponsored by National Institute of Health (NIH) and Stryker Orthopedics and has over 250 publications in the field of orthopedic surgery, hand, wrist and elbow surgery and microsurgery- free tissue transfers. Within Indian River County, he has served as Chairman of the Board and President of the Hope for Families Homeless Center, Board of the Indian River Hospital Foundation, We Care and Whole Family Health Center medical practices.

Term:  1/23-12/24

Origination: Elected (2 OC)

Occupation: Retired Surgeon



Kerry Bartlett,  of Vero Beach, has more than 30 years experience in philanthropy, including as vice president of the VNA & Hospice Foundation; VNA chief advancement officer from 2001-2007; and executive director of the Indian River Community Foundation from 2008-2014. Kerry is the founder of The Bartlett Company, which focuses on nonprofit and philanthropic consulting. She also is a managing director for Carter, a Vero Beach company that specializes in advancing philanthropy worldwide. Kerry has spent more than 25 years in the nonprofit sector as a fund development professional and has particular expertise in annual funds, major gifts, endowment campaigns and legacy giving. Kerry is also known for creating and implementing effective donor-centered stewardship programs that build, maintain and strengthen nonprofits’ relationships.

Term:  3/21-12/22   |   1/23-12/26

Origination: Appointed by Governor Ron DeSantis
Elected NOC

Occupation: Philanthropic Consultant/Managing Director



Karen has been President and CEO of Senior Resource Association, where she successfully advocates for older adults and their families, since 2006. In that role, she helps provide activities, education and services benefiting older and disabled adults in Indian River County. In addition, Karen provides oversight of the community mass transit system for residents and visitors of the county. As CEO, Karen is responsible for a $7 million operational annual budget and managing more than 100 employees. She ensures that fiscally sound and responsible solutions are created to provide healthcare and a better quality of life for all Indian River County residents. Karen earned a BS in Health Administration from Florida Atlantic University and an MHA from the University of Florida. She was elected to the Indian River County Hospital District Board of Trustees in 2016, and joined the Board in January 2017.

Term:  1/17-12/20   |   1/21-12/24

Origination: Elected 1 OC | Elected NOC

Occupation: President/CEO



Paul Westcott has been a Board Certified Workers' Compensation Attorney since 1999. In addition, Paul has earned his certification from the Florida Supreme Court as a Circuit Civil and Family Law Mediator. Receiving his Bachelor of Arts degree in both Economics and Political Science at Florida Southern College, he continued his education at Stetson University College of Law. He graduated from Stetson in 1988, having been a published member of the Stetson Law Review. Paul has been a member of the Florida Bar since 1988.  He began his practice in a combined civil litigation and transactional practice before serving as an Assistant State Attorney.  He began his career in Workers' Compensation with Rissman, Weisberg, Barrett, Hurt, Donahue & McClain P.A., where he handled Workers' Compensation cases at the trial and appellate levels.  In 1997, Paul opened the Ft. Pierce office of Hurley, Rogner, Miller, Cox, Waranch & Westcott P.A. handling workers' compensation cases at all levels throughout central and south Florida, while managing the operations of that office.  During his nearly 25 year career in Workers' Compensation, he lectured on a wide range of industry topics.

1/23-12/26   |   1/21-12/24

Origination: Elected 1 OC 

Occupation: Attorney & Mediator



Barbara has practiced physical therapy, specializing in orthopedics and sports medicine, in her hometown of Vero Beach since 1981. She was an integral part of the sports medicine team at Vero Beach High School for 35 years. Barbara completed the reserve police academy training, and served with the Vero Beach Police Department from 1982-1989. Her volunteer involvement in the community includes serving on the City of Vero Beach Recreation Committee, Arthritis Association of Indian River County, and the Senior Good Life Games. She and her husband, Michael, enjoy spending their free time traveling in their RV and training their Labradors, Gunner and Chase, in K-9 performance events, including agility and dock jumping. Barbara is a lifelong resident of Indian River County, and received her degree in physical therapy from Chattanooga State College. Barbara was elected to the Indian River County Hospital District Board of Trustees in 2016, and joined the Board in January 2017.

Term:  1/17-12/20   |   1/21-12/24

Origination: Elected 1 OC | Elected 1 OC

Occupation: Physical Therapist



Born and raised in Illinois, Michael was a Theatre and Speech Instructor at Lincoln College when he moved to Indian River County in 1984. He was the Director of Education for the Riverside Theatre for a decade, helping to build the Riverside Children’s Theatre and directing many productions. Michael is well known in the community for his 25 years of service at the United Way of Indian River County, 16 of those years as the CEO. He is very proud of his work with dozens of nonprofit agencies and his commitment to creating and strengthening community collaboratives. Michael was also an Adjunct Faculty member at Barry University for 20 years. He has served on many boards and committees over the years, including: Children’s Services Advisory Committee Needs Assessment, Chair of the Emergency Food and Shelter Program for many years, and he was a founding member of the Mental Health Collaborative, the Senior Collaborative of IRC and the IRC Executive Roundtable. As a Hospital District Trustee he is committed to serving all the citizens of our county. In particular, he hopes to see enhanced availability and affordability for behavioral/mental health for all in need.


Term: 1/23- 12/26

Origination: Elected 1 OC

Occupation: Retired CEO United Way



Marybeth’s professional career encompasses 34 years of working for GM/Delphi in a variety of positions. Starting out as a traffic claims clerk, she worked her way through the organization, with roles in Purchasing, Engineering, and Quality and Reliability. She retired in 2009 as the executive director of Global Operations for the Packard Electric Division of Delphi. In this position, she was responsible for 94 plants in 33 countries. Marybeth has served on the board of directors for numerous non-profits, including Northeast Ohio Adoption Agency; United Way of Warren Ohio, where she served as chairman of the annual campaign for two years; Up with People; Head, Heart and Hands of Indian River Club; Indian River Community Foundation, and the Indian River Mental Health Collaborative. She earned her B.A. in Political Science from Albion College. Marybeth was elected to the Indian River County Hospital District Board of Trustees in 2014, and joined the Board in January 2015. She currently serves as Chair.


Term:  1/15-12/18   |   1/19-12/22   |   1/23- 12/24

Origination: Elected 1 OC | Elected  NOC | Elected NOC

Occupation: Retired Executive GM