Montpelier Hospital Auxiliary began a new year with newly installed officers and special guest speaker Phil Ennen, Community Hospitals & Wellness Centers CEO & President, at their meeting Monday, Oct. 8th. Twenty members attended the first meeting of the season held at Montpelier Public Library, due to continuing renovation at the Montpelier Hospital. President Deanna Gipe called the meeting to order at 1 p.m. and introduced Mr. Ennen, who was given a $1000 donation to CHWC Share Foundation from the auxiliary, presented by Treasurer Barb Dietsch.
CEO Phil Ennen gave an update regarding the local hospital facilities. Auxiliary members expressed thanks that their hospital gift shop was able to reopen Sept. 18th after being closed since May, due to the renovation. He remarked concerning the relocation of emergency services, which now affords patients and staff more privacy and provides an upgraded nurses’ station. The rehabilitation program continues to provide excellent services and the sleep lab has undergone more improvements and is busy with patients. The central nursing station currently being renovated will be very appreciated by the staff.
Mr. Ennen reported that CHWC is working with the medical group regarding the option of using hospital-based doctors at the Bryan facility. In the future family doctors in the area may choose to turn over their hospital duties to these hospital-based doctors, giving the family doctors more time for patient appointments at the medical groups. However, the family doctors will keep updated on the progress of their patients at the hospital through continued communication with the hospital-based doctors via computers.
An exercise room for staff at Bryan’s hospital is planned for implementation possibly in February or March and if successful, the same plan may be carried out at the Montpelier facility. The pain management clinic has been started at Bryan, currently operating one day each week and is very successful with 20 patients scheduled the first day it was open. This clinic may need to be expanded in the future. The Bryan oncology and radiation departments also have been upgraded. Renovation at the Montpelier hospital will be complete in the near future. Other future plans depend on funding for the hospitals, which has recently suffered some cuts due to legislation in Congress, and possible effects from the November elections.
Mr. Ennen then opened a question and answer session from the auxiliary members. Among concerns were patients requesting to use the Montpelier rehab facility but encountering problems from insurance companies denying coverage under various circumstances, since each insurance company has its own criteria for coverage. Another inquiry was about the availability of a pulmonary specialist, now offered at the Archbold facility. Phil remarked that in the future other specialists may be recruited by CHWC and replacements will be needed for those nearing retirement.
Discussion also included patients needing transfers from Bryan to Fort Wayne or Toledo hospitals, depending on patient’s choice and insurance coverage. Since the local medical group has been acquired by Parkview, local doctors have computer interface with Parkview facilities in Indiana, and there has been an increase in transfers to Parkview-Ft. Wayne. Mr. Ennen shared that this summer CHWC attended a community meeting in Archbold, after the emergency department was closed due to economic reasons. At that time the possibility of opening an urgent care with specific daytime and evening hours was proposed. Currently the Bryan medical group has urgent care set up and is very busy during the day.
Auxiliary members also inquired about possible plans for celebrating Montpelier Hospital’s 60th anniversary this coming year. Mr. Ennen encouraged the auxiliary to initiate suggestions for special events marking the hospital’s anniversary. He thanked the auxiliary members for the donation to the CHWC Share Foundation, which received over 800 applications this year from patients requesting assistance with hospital bills.
Auxiliary President Deanna Gipe thanked Mr. Ennen for attending and sharing information about the hospital facilities. The regular business portion of the meeting was then held including auxiliary prayer, secretary’s and treasurer’s report, hospital gift shop report, and committee updates on recreation, sunshine, magazines and publicity.
Roll call was answered with “When you were growing up, what Halloween costume did you like to wear?”. Members taking care of patient favors recently were Janet Bennett-August, Carol Ericksen & Carol Oberlin-September, and Nancy Byers & Mary Cook-October. Volunteers for the rest of the auxiliary year were requested. Jane Williams will be in charge of patient favors for November.
Announcements included Montpelier Trick or Treat Night Tuesday, Oct. 30th followed by special activities at the Main Street Park from 6-7 p.m. Rainbow Wellness is planned Thursday, Oct. 18th from 9 a.m.- 1 p.m. at the Veterans Memorial Building and will include a luncheon.
Volunteers were requested for the Hospital Gift Shop Open House planned Friday, Nov. 9th from 9 a.m.- 4 p.m. with two volunteers needed each shift in the gift shop and in the lobby to serve cookies and punch.
Past President Pauline Brillhart thanked the auxiliary for the appreciation gift she received at the June luncheon for her years of service on the executive board. The new filigree angels for the December memorial program were displayed and are available. Forms can be obtained from Treasurer Barb Dietsch. New and former auxiliary members are reminded that their auxiliary dues may be turned in to Barb Dietsch for the new year.
The next regular meeting of the Montpelier Hospital Auxiliary is scheduled Monday, Nov. 12th at 1 p.m. downtown at ArtSpace, 303 W. Main St., with Chris Kannel as guest speaker. Members are encouraged to bring a guest. Roll call will be “A Veteran you know and a fact about him or her”.