CFO reports on hospital’s financial state

TONASKET – The North Valley Hospital District’s financial situation is gradually improving, reported Chief Financial Officer Helen Verhasselt at the Thursday, April 11, NVH Board of Commissioners meeting.

Verhasselt compared the hospital’s financial condition in a number of areas compared to a year ago:

* Net income for the district through the end of February is about $196,000. Last year showed a loss of $321,000, a swing of more than a half million dollars. The hospital itself is showing a net profit of $330,000, while the Long Term Care division shows a loss of $134,000.

* Compared to the budget, net revenue is over budget by about $95,000, operating expenses are under budget by $192,000. Net income is over budget by about $128,000.

* On the balance sheet, the Accounts Receivable shows an improvement in collection of payments by about $800,000 compared to the same time last year.

“We had some CPSI (rural hospital specialist) consultants here (Thursday),” Verhasselt said. “They were looking at our Accounts Receivable side and said ours were looking better than any facility they’ve been at. They commended us highly.”

* Accounts payable waiting to be paid has been decreased by about $350,000 from the same point last year.

* Registered warrants owed to the county are down $240,000 from the same point last year, but down $1.3 million from August.

* Wages and benefits have decreased by about $98,000.

The warrants stood at $1.7 million on Thursday, up from $1.3 million two weeks earlier, thanks to a number of factors that Verhasselt said were temporary.

“Medicare, a couple times a year, will hold up payments to us for several weeks at a time,” she said. “We’re going through one of those periods right now. They also have a nationwide glitch in their system (that is mistakenly kicking out legitimate charges). So we’ve had a significant cash flow issue with Medicare, which is why we haven’t continued that downward trend.”

She said that expected payments of about $500,000 from Medicare and $270,000 from Medicaid will go directly into paying down the warrants.

“Our warrants and our other liabilities are down,” Verhasselt said. “We’re looking way better. Some people would like quicker progress – like me – but the decisions we’ve made have us moving in the right direction.”

About Brent Baker

Brent is a reporter for the Gazette-Tribune. Prior to working at the G-T, he was the sports editor for Sunrise Publishing from 2000-2005 in Michigan. He subsequently owned and operated Buckland Media, a high school sports website, in Michigan until 2010. He and his wife Kim, who have an adult son, moved to Tonasket in 2010. Brent started work at the G-T in 2011.

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