Hospital CEO to discuss new ‘affiliation’ at Tuesday lunch

April 20, 2016 by

Cherri Waites

Cherri Waites

Just days before the affiliation between Cloud County Health Center and Salina Regional Health Center becomes official, the head of the Concordia hospital will talk about what the new venture means for local patients.

CEO Cherri Waites will speak at the Community Needs Forum “working lunch” on Tuesday, April 26, at the Nazareth Motherhouse.

The lunch will be from 11:45 a.m. to 1 p.m., and is provided without charge by the Sisters of St. Joseph. Everyone is invited, and those planning to come are asked to RSVP to 243-2149 or Parking is available in the new lot on the east side of the Motherhouse.

Waites, who was hired as the chief financial officer of the hospital in August 2014, was named interim chief executive officer in March 2015 and then accepted the permanent CEO position in late June 2015.

In December, she announced that CCHC and Salina Regional Health Center were working toward a clinical and operational affiliation to better serve their patients and communities. That five-year management agreement will be effective May 1.

She said she hopes her talk at Tuesday’s lunch will dispel some of the rumors and misinformation circulating about the new working arrangement between the two hospitals.

When she originally made the announcement, Waites emphasized that this was not a purchase of the hospital.

“I firmly believe that the future of small hospitals depends on affiliating with larger facilities,” she said.

The local hospital administration and board have spent the last few months working out the details and talking to Lindsborg Community Hospital, which has been affiliated with Salina Regional for more than three years.

“(Lindsborg) had nothing negative to say about their affiliation with Salina,” Waites said.

In that original announcement, Salina Regional CEO Mike Terry explained, “The goal in this agreement is to improve patient care in the region by better coordinating services between our two hospitals. It also helps both organizations meet the challenges of modern health care, which include increased federal regulations and lower reimbursements to health care providers and facilities.”

Also on the agenda for the April 26 lunch meeting, various groups and individuals will provide updates on other of community events and projects.

The Community Needs Forum grew out of informal meetings between the Sisters of St. Joseph and community leaders in the fall of 2008. The first working lunch was held in January 2009, and the continuing gatherings have identified what participants see as the greatest needs in the community and have established smaller groups to seek solutions. The working lunches continue to provide an opportunity for updates on projects and a clearinghouse for new ideas.

Everyone is invited to take part; you don’t have to have attended earlier lunches to come to Tuesday’s session




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