The regional medical center will not ask its employees for vaccinations until the United States Supreme Court rules on the matter.
RMC chairman David Southerland said the hospital would wait for a final decision to be made before requiring its employees to be vaccinated.
“While we are not yet making vaccines mandatory for our employees, RMC is closely monitoring the litigation surrounding vaccine mandates,” said Southerland. “As these various cases are resolved, RMC will review its policies.”
Southerland said he heard the Supreme Court ruling could be delivered as early as January.
South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson has joined with 26 other states, private employers and organizations in asking the United States Supreme Court to block the federal COVID-19 vaccine and weekly testing warrants.
US courts have rendered various decisions on the federal vaccine mandate.
Hospital administrators voted unanimously in November to require all employees to be vaccinated based on the Federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services requirement that healthcare facilities with more than 100 employees have a policy in place to ensure that eligible staff are fully immunized by January 4. 2022.
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Failure to meet this requirement would have jeopardized the hospital’s Medicare funding. RMC receives approximately 72% of its revenues from the federal government.
The hospital ended up suspending its COVID-19 vaccine mandate following a federal judge’s ruling in Louisiana on November 6. The judge issued a preliminary injunction against the mandate, saying that such a mandate must come from the legislature, not the executive. plugged.
The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals reinstated the warrant on December 17.
The vaccine’s mandate was immediately appealed and will most likely be taken to the United States Supreme Court for a final decision.
The hospital continues to provide vaccines to employees who wish to be vaccinated.
RMC currently employs around 1,300 people. It is estimated that around 900 are fully vaccinated. Employees are required to wear masks.
At the hospital’s board meeting on December 21, RMC’s vice president of medical practice operations Sabrina Robinson said the hospital has seen its gross revenues for patients drop by. about $ 3.8 million under budget for the month of November.
Inpatient volumes pushed revenue down $ 4.2 million below budget, Robinson said.
“On a positive note, outpatient revenues were over budget by $ 394,000 and physician revenues were over budget by approximately $ 23,000,” said Robinson.
The hospital has received $ 7.7 million in relief funds for providers, which is part of the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplementary Appropriations Act of 2020.
“We have not yet recognized the money received in our financial statements,” said Robinson. “We will want to evaluate it at the end of the quarter and we will take it as needed by the end of this first quarter.”
Expenses, including salaries, for the month have been over budget by approximately $ 864,000 and $ 1.5 million above budget since the start of the year.
Robinson said salaries were over budget due to employee bonuses – $ 276,000 in November and $ 401,000 year-to-date.
Robinson also noted that salaries in 3 East Hospital (Progressive Care Unit) were over $ 104,000 for November and over $ 183,000 since the start of the year.
“This ties into our internal strategies to internally provide temporary assignments to nurses that we have in specific departments for our nurse shortage,” said Robinson.
Robinson said the hospital’s cash flow increased by about $ 2 million in November due to the $ 7.7 million in COVID funding.
A review of the hospital’s income statement for November found that RMC had a loss of net income for the month of $ 3.1 million and a loss of net income of $ 6.9 million since beginning of the year.
For the entire system, including the hospital’s six primary care practices, his net income loss for the month of November was $ 3.4 million and the net income loss for the entire system. was $ 7.4 million year-to-date.
“When you look at those numbers, that’s kind of what we budgeted for,” said RMC President Reverend Caesar Richburg. “We have budgeted for low numbers or lost numbers in order to engage in this very aggressive plan that we have for the future. “
• Trustees were reminded to hand in their annual self-assessment forms.
• The Trustees met behind closed doors to receive a report from the hospital president, an update on community work, an update on quality care, information on the advisability of a Bowman practice, a Update on the family medicine residency program partnership between RMC and Family Health Centers, an update on his case against an outpatient surgery center and an update on the income cycle.