Health Care Response

EKG Machine

The Board received and approved a request from Jim Hansen, FCMC Radiology Manager, for a new EKG Machine.  Of the two we currently use, one is 13 years old and the other is 5 years old.  Both are still in use but support is being discontinued by GE due to service, parts and components becoming increasingly difficult to procure.  This is equipment that is used 30-60 times per month.  The cost of this equipment will be about $11,786.73.

FCMC Volunteer Auxiliary 

The Board heard a report for the year from Volunteer Auxiliary President Carolyn Cleverly.  She reviewed the year’s activity with the Board including the Holiday Boutique, quarterly community blood drives, Valentines Candy Sale, Rodeo Okie-Dokie Corral, County Fair, Nursing Home service projects, and other fund raising and volunteer activities.  Auxiliary members recorded 3,566 hours of service this past year and have donated $7,127.


The Board heard a report from Paul Smart, CFO, on potential impact of the Affordable Care Act on our state Medicaid Program.  One aspect of the Affordable Care Act is that we are all required to have health care coverage.  Idaho is in the process of establishing a state Health Insurance Exchange.  For a portion of the uninsured in Idaho, when they go to the Insurance Exchange or a broker to get coverage, they will discover they qualify for Medicaid under existing eligibility requirements.  Studies indicate there may be 45,000 Idahoans in this group.  Analysts estimate we may see a $394 million increase in the cost of running Idaho Medicaid over the next 10 years.  Where will the money for this increase come from?  As taxpayers will we see our withholdings and tax burdens increase?   Will we have to look at cutting essential programs?

Our state Legislature will be looking at re-designing the Idaho Medicaid program in the upcoming session.  One way we can make the most of this program is to eliminate the inefficient, inconsistent, and costly County Indigent and State Catastrophic programs and manage the care provided in those programs with a redesigned Idaho Medicaid structure, enhanced personal accountability for participants, improved coordination of care, managing care for chronic conditions, and use of technology to reduce wasteful duplication.

Mike Andrus