It’s been almost two years since Ivinson Memorial Hospital transitioned into a 501©(3) nonprofit hospital.
Since that time, the institution has grown and expanded and CEO Doug Faus told the Boomerang the choice to transition into a nonprofit has “been the right thing.”
“We projected we could continue to grow financially and clinically, so I think both of those areas were executed,” Faus said. “We’ve definitely grown our employee count and our revenue has grown.”
In the last year and a half, IMH has seen dozens of new physicians — including three new obstetrician-gynecologists, four new pediatricians, a urologist and a new medical oncologist — as well as the construction on a third-floor addition to the clinic, finished in August.
“I’m not saying it’s because of the nonprofit, we’re just continuing to grow and be successful,” Faus said.
The hospital has also worked to get its new hospital board up to speed on healthcare; each of the 12 board members is a volunteer, and not all of them had previous experience in a hospital setting.
“They’ve really been amazing, the way they’ve stepped up,” Faus said.
Luckily, Faus said there have been little to no hiccups or challenges with the transition from a district hospital to a nonprofit, which was made official in January 2018.
The change does come with some new tax filing requirements, as well as a requirement for a community health needs assessment every three years. IMH is working with a consultant on its first assessment, which is due next summer.
“That’s exciting because we’re really reaching out to hear from various community members: What are we doing well? What should we do better? What gaps are there in community health?” Faus said.
One of the reasons IMH wanted to become a nonprofit was to expand as a hospital system; Faus said now that it’s not as tied to the Albany County Hospital District, it’s easier to “go outside the county boundaries and help support our growth programs.”
“We really want to grow as a health system, help support communities around us,” he said.
The hospital has started partnering with rural communities to try to bring healthcare closer to them. One example, Faus said, is Saratoga working on a new clinic where IMH could potentially send specialized doctors.
“They gave me a list of all the doctors they’d like to see every month, every two months, every three months,” Faus said. “We feel now we clearly have the ability to go do that.”
Although the hospital is looking to grow outside of the county, it’s also looking to establish itself as a health destination as well. Part of the hospital’s strategic plan for 2025, IMH is looking to be “in the top 5% of any database we can find,” Faus said.
“Everybody in Saratoga thinks they need to come to a bigger hospital, everyone in Laramie thinks they need to go to Denver, and it’s just simply not true,” Faus said. “There are things we don’t do and will never do, but there are a lot of things we do that we do as well or better than Denver or Fort Collins. We feel we need that data to basically say to people, ‘Look, we’re in the top 5%.’”
The third of the three objectives in the strategic plan is increased employee and physician satisfaction. Hoping to achieve all three objectives by 20205, Faus said the IMH board chooses a different goal metrics each quarter to tackle.
Looking forward, IMH has plans for continued growth and additional renovations to its campus on 30th Street. Faus said the next area to get a facelift will the obstetrician and the pediatric area on the third floor of the hospital.
“Within the next few years, we will completely redevelop that floor,” Faus said. “We’re excited about that, the women and kids in the community will certainly benefit from that once we get that done.”