Northfield Hospital Board Report Oct. 2017


  1. Vice Chair, Virginia Kaczmarek, called the meeting to order at 6:30 p.m. The Agenda was approved.

The Consent Agenda was approved. The Consent Agenda included Minutes for the August Board Meeting; Minutes for the Community Relations Committee meeting; approval of Quality & Performance Improvement Policy and Program; and Clinical Privilege Request forms.



  1. Hospital Chief of Staff. The applications for Medical Staff Membership/Privileges were approved.
  2. Chief Medical Officer. No report.
  3. NH&C. No report.
  4. Allina Medical Clinic Report. No report.
  5. City Business—Brad Ness. Ness reported that the Council returned a proposal to the Charter Commission without passing it. A $3.5 million project for the Fire Department is likely to begin in 2018. A lease agreement for the hospital and clinics was approved. A 2018 tax levy increase of 8.5% was proposed by the City. Most of the increase will go to increase staff salaries that lag those in other municipalities.


Presentations/Discussions/Action Items

  1. Board Portal—Vern Lougheed. NH&C has been working on a communication network that would provide simple, secure internal communication between Board members and administration. The IT staff reviewed the software available and is recommending the Board Effect package. A local firm is also developing suitable software, but is only in Beta testing stage at this time. The cost will be $5400 per year, and the contract would run for 1 year at a time.
  2. Foundation Recommendation—Laura Peterson. Peterson brought a series of questions regarding the foundation to the Board. Q–If the Bylaws of the foundation specify 3 members from the Hospital Board, how should they be selected? A—The Hospital Board will appoint the three. Q—Should the Foundation report to the Hospital Board on a regular basis? A—Yes, the Foundation should appear semi-annually at Board meetings to report. Q—should NH&C provide initial funding for the Foundation? A—this is still under study. The Hospital Board will set the initial Bylaws for the Foundation, but after that the Foundation Board is responsible for the Bylaws. A Board member proposed that the Articles of Incorporation be changed to read that a super-majority of Foundation Board members be required to remove an At-Large Board member from the Foundation. Several steps remain to be completed but the foundation should be operational in early 2018.
  3. LTCC Nursing Patient Care Update—Tammy Hayes. The Long Term Care Center receives 5 out of 5 stars on broad quality measures and equals or exceeds the MN average on the Quality of Life Survey of residents. The Family Satisfaction Survey scores were below the state average in 2016, but the problems have been addressed. The LTCC meets or exceeds state averages for a variety of other quality measures. There were no penalties or payment denials by Medicare in 2015 and 2016.
  4. Senior Care Development Agreement Update—Jerry Ehn. Several discussions have been held between Yanik (the developer), St. Olaf College, and the City regarding the location of the proposed project. The City would prefer that the project be located on the east side—toward Cedar Ave. in the hope that it would spur residential development of that area. Yanik argued that such a move would delay the project (Stages 1 & 2) considerably, so the project will likely be in the west location. If further development is undertaken (Stage 3) it could be located across the road and a mirror image of this project. Steve Underdahl pointed out that NH&C is only a facilitator for this project, and not involved in the actual negotiations between the 3 other parties. The project continues to move forward.


Executive and Committee Reports

  1. CEO Report—Steve Underdahl. Dr. Fulco will be recognized in MN Monthly as one of the “top Docs” in Minnesota. Underdahl reported on the progress for a variety of initiatives.   The EHR assessment continues. The Faribault orthopedic site is completed. More orthopedic space is needed in Northfield. NH&C staff made a site visit to Ivinson Memorial Hospital in Laramie WY, to learn about their Process Improvement Project. The hope is that the visit will give employees insight into the Process Improvement and a new set of “peers.”   The Advanced Care Planning program continues to make progress. Steve has been “following the patient” at the Lakeville Clinic to better understand clinic operations. September volume at the hospital was good.
  2. Financial Report—Scott Edin. August was busy and revenues and expenses were both above budget, and Net Operating Income was substantially above budget. Services were above budget in most departments. Government paid revenue was higher than projected so the discount on revenue was also above budget.
  3. Budget and Finance Committee Report—Charlie Kyte. Recent changes in state law have expanded the investment options open to NH&C, and the Committee is developing new investment policies and guidelines for the $55 million in its portfolio. The Committee will come to the Board to determine its risk tolerance and a set of goals for the investment plan at the December meeting. A Request for Proposals will be issued to financial planners in this area.



Board members commented on a recent article in the paper describing the efforts of St. Gabriel’s Hospital to combat the opioid epidemic. Could the health care providers in Northfield be doing more? Could NH&C be a leader in this area?

A retreat on “Governance” is scheduled for Friday, Nov. 3

Meeting adjourned at 8:20 p.m.

Next meeting: October 27, 2017

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