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Hospital board hears promising COVID report

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Houston County Hospital District LogoBy Jan White
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CROCKETT – At the April 19 meeting of the Houston County Hospital District Board of Directors meeting, members received encouraging statistics. 

Chief Nursing Officer Anthony Cumbie reported that as of April 19, Covid hospitalizations for Service Area G, which includes Anderson, Camp, Cherokee, Franklin, Freestone, Gregg, Harrison, Henderson, Houston, Marion, Panola, Rains, Rusk, Shelby, Smith, Trinity, Upshur, Van Zandt and Wood County, were less than 1% at 0.83% with the Lufkin area a 0.0%. 

Dick Murchison gave the financial report for the month of March. Total liabilities and equity were $11,046,482. Transactions were the regular deposits and payments with no unexpected expenses incurred. Murchison did point out that the tax district revenue number at $1,259,873 was approximately $270k under the budget of $1,530,000, but this was due to a delay in tax district revenue collected. 

During his hospital report, Cumbie revealed that orthopedic surgeon Dr. Clifton O’Meara is retiring and will cease doing surgeries in the first part of May but will follow through with current patients. The hospital administrators are speaking to an orthopedic group out of Lufkin interested in fulfilling O’Meara’s position, using scheduling similar to his. Cumbie stated that they have a new PA in the health clinic who is in the office three days a week and a nursing student who is working as an intern and will stay on after graduation as a nurse practitioner. Cumbie also reported that the indigent health care write-off for the first quarter of 2022 was $800,000.

EMS reported that they had 261 request

s for service, with 165 patient transports, 57 CMC transfers, and 27 canceled calls. As a result of the March 21 storm, EMS reported ten total patients with only three that had serious injuries. UT Health, Palestine Regional, and Ventura out of Huntsville all sent ambulances to assist if needed. Board President Barbara Crowson commended the hospital and EMS staff for the way they handled the storm and power issues.

The remaining reports were from the ambulance committee updating the board on the completion of repairs to the ambulance building and the records management committee who reported that HIPPA certified workers had begun sorting through and removing files to the new, secured location. 

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