Skip Navigation


Northfield Hospital Board Meeting - January 23, 2014

January 26, 2014 at 11:12 am
By Dave Emery
Medical Staff Reports
  1. Chief of Staff—Dr. O’Halloran: Dr. O’Halloran thanked the hospital for opening a 4th operating room during the busy fall of 2013. Dr. O’Halloran suggested that the Board rephrase those items in the Code of Conduct (coming later in the Board meeting) that begin with the word “Refrain”. For example, the admonition, “Refrain from providing services not likely to benefit the patient…” seemed to state the obvious and might be interpreted as suggesting this is a current practice. 
  2. Clinic Medical Director Report—Dr. Flannery: Patient visits to the Urgent Care Center in Lakeville continue to build, and patients are positive about the experience. Negotiations are underway to add an allergist ½ day each week at the Lakeville Clinic.
  3. Allina Clinic Report—Dr. Keith Olson:  Dr. Olson was unable to attend. 
City Business Report

Mayor Graham described the Mayor’s Youth Council being created as part of the Youth Initiative. The Initiative seeks to provide opportunities for high school age students to participate in city government. There will be two youth members on some City boards and commissions: one voting, one none voting. 

Special Presentations
  1. CEO Steve Underdahl reported on the “Year in Review”. Highlights from the long list of accomplishments included updating the Strategic Plan completion of a master plan for facilities; establishing an urgent care clinic in Lakeville; reorganization of the administration; establishing a patient “rounding” program; receipt of a MHA award for patient safety; implementation of a discharge planning tool; and hiring a cost analytics consultant to track the cost of hospital services. Ongoing projects include revitalizing the clinics, working toward the goal of being a “high value” organization, and negotiating with Mayo regarding the professional services agreements (PSAs) for Mayo-related physicians.
  2. Board President, Gina Franklin, welcomed new members Jonathan Reppe and Charlie Mandile to the Hospital Board.
Action Items
  1. The Board approved, with a few revisions, the minutes of the December Board meeting.
  2. The Board approved the applications for medical staff privileges.
  3. The Board approved a Code of Conduct brought by Tammy Hayes, Chief Nurse Executive. The purpose of the code is to identify for all employees many of the values and behaviors consistent with patient-centered care.
  4. The Board approved the purchase of Omnicell Medication Distribution System Hardware and Software Upgrade for $50,328. The system allows for safe and secure medication administration and controlled substance management.
  5. The Board approved the slate of Board officers brought by the Governance Committee: Charles Kyte was elected Board Chair; James Schlichting was elected Vice Chair.
  6. The Board approved the recommendation from the Governance committee to create a Quality Assurance Committee. Board members agreed on the need for such a committee but some members were uncomfortable with the process behind the recommendation. Board members were being asked to vote on creating the committee before the role and functions of the committee had been specified. After approving the formation of th QA Committee, members-to-be of the committee were instructed to bring statements of role, functions, and a strategic plan to the Board for approval ASAP.
  7. The Board voted to change the name of the Public Relations Committee to the Community Relations Committee.
  8. The Board approved the slate of committee members brought by the Governance Committee.
  9. The Board approved a motion designating the Chair of the Finance Committee to be Board Treasurer.
Discussion Items
  1. Newly elected Board Chair, Charlie Kyte, described the major tasks facing the Board in 2014. The list included a major facilities improvement project; realignment of the PSA agreement with Mayo; development of a stronger and more focused “brand identity” for NH&C; increased clinic utilization; and a commitment to delivering higher quality care.
  2. All Board members had attended a recent Minnesota Hospital Association (MHA) retreat, and each member was asked to share one idea from the conference with the entire board. The ideas ranged from the practical to the prophetic: hospitals need-- better cost data, to exceed patient expectations, to organize around continuous care rather than incident care, and need to embrace the culture of 6-sigma. Genome based care is the future of medicine.  
Information Items

CFO Report—Tim Gronseth. December was a great month financially! Operating Income was $1.6 million over budget for the month and Net Income for the year was just under $2 million. Most service areas had a strong month. Also, NH&C has a richer patient mix than most hospitals in MN. Medicare typically pays hospitals less for services than do other payers, and Medicare patients are a much smaller portion of NH&C patients than is average for MN hospitals.  Tim also presented patient volume data covering several years for all the major services provided by NH&C. The data showed the patient volume growing for most services.

The Board thanked Gina Franklin for her dedicated and wise service as Board Chair during a very eventful and challenging period.

Observer’s Comment: I second the Boards recognition of Gina’s contribution to the Board, to Northfield Hospital and Clinics, and to the community.      


  • January 27 2014 at 10:30 pm
    Jane McWilliams

    Thanks, David, for your comprehensive report. I hope there are many who find their way to the LWV site to read your reports. There is no other source for info about this important public institution.

Add a comment

The following fields are not to be filled out. Skip to Submit Button.
Not Comment
(This is here to trap robots. Don't put any text here.)
(This is here to trap robots. Don't put any text here.)
(This is here to trap robots. Don't put any text here.)