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TODAY news for Thursday, July 28, 2008

Loma Linda University Adventist Health Sciences Center news

Boards of Trustees report on activities of May 18 to 20

Following is a report from the meetings of the Boards of Trustees for Loma Linda University Adventist Health Sciences Center.

Loma Linda University Adventist Health Sciences Center

On May 18 the Board of Trustees voted to name B. Lyn Behrens, MBBS, as president emerita of Loma Linda University Adventist Health Sciences Center. This action was taken in recognition of her more than 17 years of distinguished service as president at Loma Linda. The Board also hosted a dinner that evening to express appreciation to Dr. Behrens for her dedicated service.

Due to new responsibilities, Lorne Babiuk, PhD, DSc, has tendered his resignation as a member of the Boards of Trustees of LLUAHSC, LLU, and LLUMC. The Boards accepted his resignation with regret and appreciation.

The Boards of Trustees of LLUAHSC, LLU, and LLUMC appointed two new members who will serve on all three Boards: Judith Lloyd Storfjell, PhD—executive director of health care innovation at the University of Illinois at Chicago, and Eric Tsao, MBBS—radiologist residing in Corona, California.

The Board heard a report on the strategic planning process for LLUAHSC. The objectives for the LLUAHSC strategic plan include the development of LLUAHSC strategic direction and guiding principles that reaffirm and strengthen mission, vision, and values; supporting the development of strategic plans at the core entity level; and ensuring that LLUAHSC and core entity plans are aligned to combine strengths and maximize organizational synergies.

An overview of the planning framework was reviewed, and it includes a LLUAHSC strategic plan that will provide broad themes and guiding principles.

The health ministries, University, and other core entity plans will provide specific goals, action plans, and targets. They will have latitude to appoint their own leadership steering groups and customize specific approaches, consistent with the overall framework.

The LLUAHSC plan will be developed between July and December 2008 with entity planning taking place in 2009.

The Boards of Trustees heard special presentations as follows: John Husing, PhD, a well-known economist who was listed by the Los Angeles Times Magazine as one of the 100 most powerful people shaping life in Southern California, gave a presentation on the economic impact the LLUAHSC entities have on the Inland Empire. The total impact is estimated at $1.8 billion, making LLUAHSC the largest non-public institution affecting the Inland Empire. From 2000 to 2020, the Inland Empire is anticipated to add more people than all but six of the states in the United States. He believes the economy for the Inland Empire will slow until 2010 but will then pick up again. A copy of the full report may be requested from the office of Kevin Lang, MBA, executive vice president for finance and administration.

Richard Thirlby, MD, program director for general surgery at Virginia Mason Medical Center in Seattle, Washington, presented­­ “Spirituality 101 for Health Care Providers.” Dr. Thirlby is working with the American College of Surgeons relative to including spirituality in the curriculum in medical schools. He noted that nearly 100 percent of patients use spirituality at the time of having surgery, 77 percent of patients say physicians should consider spiritual needs, and 94 percent want physicians to inquire about spiritual beliefs if they are gravely ill. Research shows that spirituality positively affects physical and mental health. Since this topic is central to Loma Linda’s purpose and service to people, Dr. Thirlby indicated his eagerness to learn more about training here.   

Loma Linda University

The following new operating policies were approved by the Board and will be posted online and published in LLU TODAY

C-5: Applicant and Admissions Procedures

C-20: Program Review and Assessment

J-1: Areas of Responsibility

J-2: General User Policies

J-4: Data Security

J-5: Creation and Management of Public Web Pages

J-6: Software Licenses

J-7: E-mail Accounts

The Board approved the post-professional doctor of physical therapy (DPT) degree program based at Castle Medical Center in Hawaii. The degree is offered through the School of Allied Health Professions.

The Board approved the closure of two programs. They are the family life education master of arts and certificate programs based at Avondale, Australia, School of Science and Technology, and the bachelor of science in health science degree program based at Humanitec Rehabilitation College in Japan, School of Allied Health Professions.

The University is doing well against budget for fiscal year 2007/2008. Financial operation plans were presented and included the following points: student services supported with 8.5 percent of tuition income; campus capital projects supported with two percent of tuition income; research support services supported by 4.9 percent of research revenue;  transfer from affiliates is reduced to half of last year; and debt increased to $58 million due to bond for new utility expansion.

The Board approved the establishment of two new endowed professorships in the School of Dentistry. They are the Ronald E. Buell Endowed Professorship in Endodontics, and Philip J. Boyne and Peter Geistlich Endowed Professorship. Both funds are fully funded at the mandated $1.2 million.

Loma Linda University Medical Center

Ruthita Fike, MA, chief executive officer, presented an update on the following: the strategic plan, the recent PossAbilities event, the Children’s Hospital 15th annual gala, and the recent open house for the perinatal institute. Ms. Fike continued by congratulating Steve Mohr, MBA, senior vice president for finance, and Jesse Mock, MA, vice president for facilities and environment, upon completing graduate school and receiving their MBA and MA respectively.

Mel Sauder, JD, MBA, senior vice president for business development and institutes, and Jesse Mock, MA, vice president for facilities and environment, gave the Board a progress report on the California Heart and Surgical Hospital (CHSH). The purchase of the 28-bed hospital is complete with the transfer documents being executed the first week of May 2008 and the close of the transaction to occur by the end of May 2008. It is anticipated that the building will be ready for patient occupancy by the fall of 2008. The planning processes are underway to identify the clinical programs which will offer opportunity for growth and development at CHSH.

John Abendshien of Abendshien and Associates updated the Board on the recent economic changes and the strategic implications for Loma Linda University Medical Center. The longer-term growth outlook for the Inland Empire remains positive. The job loss in the Inland Empire is expected to reverse over the next one to two years. A regional economist predicts that housing sales are approaching bottom and will have a resurgence by 2010. Based on the softening economy, a continued major focus on operations, market share growth, continued service volume growth, and reviewing of discretionary capital projects in terms of priority and timing will be critically important. 

Steve Mohr, MBA, senior vice president for finance, presented the April 2008 financials. Operations in April 2008 were under budget by $1,123,202 with an average census of 581 compared to budget of 578. Lower than budgeted earnings is primarily due to higher than budget supply costs and purchased services off-set by positive adjustments to interest rate swaps for April. The adverse payor mix experienced in the first quarter of 2008 normalized for the month of April. Management has put in place a back-to-budget plan.

Daniel W. Giang, MD, vice president for medical administration, and Gwen Wysocki, RN, manager academic relations, presented an overview of training data and affiliation agreement processing for all non-Loma Linda schools that send students to Loma Linda for training, as well as a training data comparison with Loma Linda schools/students. Additionally, Ms. Wysocki shared the data and the process for those individuals/students who come to Loma Linda facilities as observers.

Elizabeth J. Dickinson, MPH, RN, chief nursing officer, gave an update on the recent nursing research conference, the activities surrounding the May 2008 nurses’ week, the pediatric nurses symposium, and the Spotlight On The Evidence newsletter.

TODAY news for Thursday, July 28, 2008