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Feather River Bulletin
Quincy, California
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October 20, 2010     Feather River Bulletin
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II lialUiliJHIm Jl litllll | lllliK|lllllIHINlilllll! : 2A Wednesday, Oct. 20, 2010 Feather River Bulletin Candidates for PDH board answer questions Linda Satchwell Staff Writer Isatchwell@plumasnews.com Plumas District Hospital is never far from the news these days, and the next couple of weeks should be no exception. Measure B won, the community said No to the hospital tax. Now, it's time to say Yes to something. In the wake of that election, there has been a dramatic change in leadership at the hospital, the dismissal of Chief Ex- ecutive Officer Dick Hathaway, and an embattled board at- tempting to feel its way forward. Now, three board seats are up for grabs, and the community wil] be asked to make a positive choice by voting for three of the four candidates. (Board member Bill Elliott isn't running for re-election.) Candidates John Kimmel and Fred Thon have been long- standing members of the board. They have weathered the tax cap storm, and it will be up to voters to determine just how well they navigated that tumultuous time. The two new candidates, Kathy Price and Bill Wickman, are no novices to PDH hospital matters, either. Wickman has served on the Measure A oversight committee, which makes sure that Measure A bond funds are spent appropriately. He also was a vocal member of the Save Our Hospital group dur- ing the Measure B election. Price knows the hospital from the inside out, having just re- tired after 35 years as a nurse practitioner there. Since there was no forum during which the public could ask questions and the candidates could demonstrate their compe- tence and brandish their opinions, Feather Publishing has come up with a uniform set of questions for them to answer. What are the particular skills and experience that you feel make you quali- fied to serve on the PDH board of directors? John Kimmel (JK): A) Hopefully the previous 12 years of experience would be a good resource to the next board. B) My financial back- ground being a certified public accountant has helped me to understand and oversee the financial side of the hospital business. For all 12 years I have served as a member of the finance com- mittee. Honestly, all of the candidates have special skills and would do an excellent job as a Director. lems faced by people dealing with the health care system, and have been a strong patient advocate, helping people through the process of obtaining the most appro- priate services for them, and steering them through the insurance and prescription nightmares they often face. I have given over 30 years of community service, served on several boards, volun- teered at hundreds of events, and supported our schools and hospital through many troubled times. I can make budget decisions in a down- turned economy, meet the needs of all people, and bring the essentials of health care to the entire community. Kathy Price (KP): I have over 43 years experience in the health care field in direct patient care, staff super- vision and working 35 years as a family nurse practitiow er in Quincy. I retired in July to move to other challenges. I know clearly the prob- Fred Thon (FT): I have led and directed for more than 50 years of my life. This in- cludes community, business and highly technical leader- ,, shipWhen Lretiredto:, - . Quincy 16 years ago, I started ! volunteering almost imme- diately at the museum, local Dr. Grosse gave me back the life I love! Neck Pain Back Pain Shoulder Pain Sports Injuries Knee Pain ._.o, Stephen P. Grosse, D.C. ... Quincy Chiropractic 2254 E. Main St. * Quincy (530) 283-5666 Open 6am - 12pm Graeagle Chiropractic 8989 Hwy 89 (By the Barn) Graeagle (530) 262-4791 Open 1pro - 4pro John Kimmel companies, the chamber, the community supper and my church. When the oppor- tunity arose at PDH in 2004 to fill a vacancy on the board, I interviewed and was chosen. I also was elected to the board in 2006. Bill Wickman (BW): I have been actively involved in the community for over 25 years and have worked with many different groups during that time. I have spent over 20 years with Plumas County schools as a board member for seven years, chief finan- cial officer for the PUSD Education Foundation, mem- ber of the QHS Boosters and community liaison and chair- man of the Citizen Oversight Committee for the $15 million facilities bond voted on in 2003. Since 20071 have worked actively with the PDH board and administration as a member of Friends of PDH, chairman of the Measure A Citizens Oversight Commit- tee and currently vice presi- dent of the Plumas Health Care Foundation. For the last two years I have been the chairman of the Plumas County Economic Recovery Committee as well as the current spokesperson for a 17-county coalition that was formed to assist small rural counties in social and economic issues at both the state and federal level. I feel that these various community, county and regional activities and lead- ership have prepared me to become more active with the Plumas District Hospital as a board member. The hospital tax issue has caused a breach of trust between the board and the community it serves. What will you do to repair that trust? JK: The key to repairing the Kathy Price trust in my opinion is to con- tinue to serve our purpose. We must stay committed to our core mission statement by continuing to meet our community health care needs and providing quality health care services in spite of the crazy economic times. When you do a good job you gain respect. KP: The departure of our previous administrator brings the opportunity to chart a new course for the future of our hospital. Public disclosure and transparency are absolutely fundamental to the board's chances o re- gaining the trust and support of the community, which they've lost. I was a supporter of Measure A and made phone calls asking people to support it, and stated future costs I was given to say. I under- stand the outrage people felt upon hearing of the "new" tax assessment level. Then the present board's decision to balk at every opportunity, to delay the petition and voting process, making it necessary to go to court, was appalling to me. We are the owners of the hospital and clinics and should have a strong voice at the table. FT: Measure B did cause a breach in the community, but was it really proper to call it .a')Teach of trust," when ..... most of the community had nver attended a b0ai'd meet- ing or cared what the leader- ship of the hospital did, as long as the medical staff took care of their needs. I am not sure that we will ever change the minds of those who called us liars and untrustworthy. We must continue to do our jobs as responsible directors. BW: I feel that the main issue that has led to the division within our community in re- 3RD NUAL JINGLE FMR" Sat., Nov. !am to 5pm Memo " T-Shirts ,4 Fudge by Chilcoot Meat Rubs * Candles Thanksgiving Gifts & Decor Stamp Cards * Heating Pads Red Hat Items High Sierra Coffee & Cookies * Painted Saws by Jane Jewelry * Rocks * Birdhouses * Cookie Lee Painted Railroad Pictures * Christmas Crafts Memorial Hall, Portola Call 832-4730 or 836-0846 Fred Thon lation to the tax issue centers on communication. Most in- dividuals that I have talked with on Measure A and sub- sequently Measure B feel that open communication on the initial bond measure, result- ing tax that was levied and the subsequent out-fall was their biggest concern. During this same time period I have tried to provide factual information on the current condition of our medical infrastructure as they relate to the existing as well as future needs to meet the medical needs of the community. I have written articles for the newspaper from the Plumas County Economic Recovery Committee as well as letters to the editor. I will work with the existing Board to develop a communication plan that will provide regular updates on current hospital needs that would include the infrastructure, technology, doctors and overall medical personnel that are all a part of PDH. I would also look at the interest in holding regular periodic open forums to pre- sent these current conditions and needs as well as hear di- rectly from the community. What is your specific vision for the future of Plumas District Hospital? What do you want the hospital to look like, what rie,hou.ld it offer, etc., in 10 years, 20 years? As part of your answer please consider the follow- ing: a. Where should the board go regarding the hospital and construction, given the passage of Measure B? b. What's your opinion about forging a more collaborative relationship with neighboring hos- pitals? JK: If I got three wishes: 1) In 10 to 20 years I would like to see all Plumas District Bill Wickman Hospital, Indian Valley Healthcare, Eastern Plumas District hospitals as one district (probably hardest to accomplish). 2) Continue to have stable quality physi- cians, medical staff and ad- ministration. 3) Financially sustainable quality health- care facilities and technology in Quincy, Greenville and Portola (quantity of health- care in each location is dictated by demand and fiscal affordability with coopera- tion filling in the gaps). KP: The board should con- tinue their present course of ensuring excellent local care with well-trained, pro- fessional staff. The ability to bring out- side specialists to Quincy is limited by 1 1/= hours drive both ways to reach us. Tele- medicine services promises to make consultations more readily available. The use of electronic records to transfer the patient's lab, X-ray and physician's charts on disc to patients and consultants would be helpful, time sav- ing, and lessen opportunities for errors. The clinics should be easy to access, give prompt ap- pointments, have extended and weekend hours, and a greater emphasis on cus- tomer service. Insurance billing staff should be accessible to people tht,uestions, difficulties with lling out o ,1 fJ , forms, or financial difficul- ties in paying their bills. An ombudsman available to patients Would be a helpful addition. The passage of Measure B will delay some needed improvements, but all options for grants, bonds, donations by corporations and matching fund programs should be evaluated. Wait for an improvement in the economy before trying for increased tax assessments, See PDH, page 3A ATTENTION MERCHANTS & RESIDENTS OF QUINCY We are taking PRE-ORDERS for your Christmas Tree. BOY SCOUTS OF AMERICA Call Lisa at 283-4884 to reserve size of tree and quantity. FALL FESTIVAL AT QUINCY ELEMENTARY CAMPUS 246 Alder Street, Quincy Richard IC Stockton, CLU ChFC, Agent Insurance Lic. #0B68653 Providing Insurance & Financial Services 65 W. Main St., Quincy, CA 95971 (530) 283-0565 Fax (530) 283-5143 www.richardstockton.us WE LIVE WHERE YOU LIVE That's baby talk for, "Do you have life insurance?" As your family grows, so do your reasons for protecting them. Get the right life insurance and peace of mind. Like a good neighbor, State Farm is there CALL ME TODAY. 00StateFarm Friday October 22nd 5:30 - 8:00 pm JOIN US FOR A NIGHT OF FOOD, FUN & GAMES FOR THE WHOLE FAMILY!!! Costumes, Cake Walk, Haunted House, 6th grade fundraising spaghetti dinner & More! Sponsored by Pioneer-Quincy PCO I h , , I 'I ! i HIIt|,00ll00l0000$11lHifig!l| I11ilrl0000l[!00[0000l00iglFl!l]lltllllllllll[llllllllli:lliglll]] II00F! i"| H i[/l:il I , ,,,, IT 11 l;]00ll[il00llt: 1.,, , ,