Next milestone in Critical Access push coming soon for NRH

Newman Regional Health continues its work towards Critical Access designation, and CEO Robert Wright expects final word coming within two months.

Wright discussed the hospital's current status following Wednesday's NRH Board of Trustees meeting.


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Hospital administrators have been counting on Critical Access replacing the current Medicare reimbursement method with around $2 million in losses last year and around $1 million in losses in 2012.

Critical Access is a cost-based reimbursement program, which pays 101 percent of "reasonable" Medicare inpatient and outpatient costs for hospitals in designated rural areas. They have to provide 24-7 care but inpatient bed numbers are capped at 25.

In other business, chief financial officer Holly French reported the hospital had a net income of $84,000 for December. This included the recognition of so-called "meaningful use" incentive reimbursement from Medicaid after information system investments made last year.

The board also received the official word Dr. Roger Roberts will begin in March as the second interventional cardiologist at Newman Cardiology and Drs. Ryan and Anna LaSota will start with Newman Family Medicine by early fall.

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