by David Tesitor
WALSENBURG- In their last meeting May 28, the Spanish Peaks Regional Health Center Hospital Board voted to hire Boulder and Associates, architects to draw up plans for a proposed addition to the Veterans Center. Several design ideas have been proposed including providing additional office space, a meditation center, a chapel, an activities area and a kitchen with dining area. If the addition is to be built, funds will come from several grants already in the works.
The board also heard a report about the status of the facilities in Trinidad and Rifle. According to Bill Gust, Nursing Home Administrator, “their status should have little or no effect on the population here.” The Rifle center is looking for a new administrator because the former director is under indictment, and the Trinidad Home is having ownership issues. Gust reported that Governor Ritter would like to see transfer of ownership of the Trinidad facility rather than closure.
The hospital reported that their operating expenses were $ 48,463 over budget, yet their overall profit through the month (and year) was up. They also voted to send the delinquent accounts to collections. An estimated 224 accounts representing an estimated $193,850 will be sent out for collections.
In other business, the Board is actively seeking to hire an additional physician to support the overworked doctors in the emergency room. One of the biggest concerns was where the new physician will locate. Two prospective doctors have made a visit to the area.