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NBH reports annual performance to Board of Corporators
Feb 27, 2012

(Feb. 23, 2012) Northern Berkshire Healthcare is seeing improvements in finances, quality of care, and patient satisfaction, President and CEO William Frado told NBH Corporators at the organization’s annual meeting on February 22.
NBH reported an operating loss of $3.25 million on revenues of $67.7 million for the fiscal year that ended September 30, 2011. The system also had non-recurring debt restructuring and pension plan costs of about $5.2 million.
“The costs of restructuring were very high but will be gone when we emerge from Chapter 11, which we expect will happen in April,” said Frado. “When you look just at the operating costs of North Adams Regional Hospital, the picture is starting to look a lot better. The hospital has made a profit of more than one million dollars since this fiscal year started, and we are working very hard to make sure that trend continues.”
“But the real story, from my perspective, is the quality of care our employees continue to provide despite the challenges we faced,” Frado continued. “I can’t say enough about how they have repeatedly stepped up to the plate, treating our patients with the utmost skill and care. The results are in the numbers – we achieved some very high patient satisfaction scores and met some tough quality goals in 2011.”
Frado said NBH trustees have approved a five-year plan to maintain stability in the local healthcare organization. “That doesn’t mean our work is over,” he added. “Every person who works for Northern Berkshire Healthcare is focused on providing great care in the most efficient way possible. That, combined with the tremendous support we continue to receive from our community, is what will give us a stronger future.”
Arthur Turton, MD, chairman of the NBH Board of Trustees, told Corporators that the Board is “very committed to providing quality healthcare close to home. Close to home is very important to many in our community. And I cannot stress the quality issue strongly enough. Despite our challenges we have maintained excellent quality metrics and received citations in this regard. We couldn’t be more grateful to all the staff at NARH and the VNA and Hospice for their dedication to quality on behalf of our patients.”
“We have had a busy year,” Turton added. “While the financial restructuring probably garnered the most press, I hope you can see that we have achieved some significant successes during the year.” Turton closed by thanking employees, the medical staff, trustees, and the administrative staff for their work during the year.
Frado and Turton offered a special thanks to local and regional vendors, who worked with NBH following the Chapter 11 filing in June.
Highlights of 2011:
·      NARH’s patient satisfaction grew during 2011, with patients ranking NARH’s Critical Care Unit and Birthing Center in the 99th percentile among hospitals in a nationwide survey. NARH was also recognized as a “Top 10” performer in patient satisfaction among Massachusetts hospitals by the national patient satisfaction surveying firm Press Ganey Associates.
·         The Visiting Nurse Association & Hospice of Northern Berkshire earned a perfect score on a Department of Public Health survey in February, the second consecutive perfect survey for the VNA & Hospice.
·         NARH won gold awards for cardiac and stroke patient care from the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Get With the Guidelines program.
·         NARH was named to the Harvard Pilgrim Hospital Honor Roll for quality of care, placing in the top 25% of those measured nationally on a set of quality indicators.
·         Physicians and mid-level providers coming to Northern Berkshire in 2011 included Louis Reines, MD, a general surgeon; Veronica Del Riccio, MD, an obstetrician/gynecologist at Northern Berkshire OB/GYN; Stephanie Foo, MD, a hospitalist; John Sifuentes, MD, a hospitalist; Kenneth Patterson, MD, an emergency department physician; Ted Weitz, MD, an emergency department physician; Kristin Lamontagne, MD, at Williamstown Medical Associates, Rita Willey, nurse practitioner at Northern Berkshire Family Medicine; and Marie Gudz, certified nurse midwife with Northern Berkshire OB/GYN.
·         NARH earned accreditation by The Joint Commission following a survey in October.
·         NARH’s Wound Healing Center received three national awards from National Healing Corporation, for Best New Center of the Year, New Center Outcomes of the Year, and Front Runner Award.
·         NARH’s ultrasound service was accredited for three years by the American College of Radiology
·         NARH’s lab was accredited for two years by the College of American Pathologists, continuing a 41-year accreditation record.


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