The regional medical center is working with its auditing firm to make improvements to the financial reporting model that it hopes will be completed by the end of the 2021-22 fiscal year, September 30.
The hospital began upgrading its electronic medical record (EMR) and hospital operating system on August 2, 2021, moving to Cerner CommunityWorks. The process which did not go as smoothly as RMC would have liked and caused distortions in a computerized financial reporting template which was developed by RMC’s Greenville-based auditing firm FORVIS.
“This model is really not working well for us, especially with regards to our finances, and is being reviewed right now as it impacts our bottom line each month,” the chairman of the board said. of the RMC, the Reverend Caesar Richburg. August 23 Board meeting.
“It’s important that we know that, and I think once that’s fixed, I think we’ll see better numbers,” he said.
In a statement, RMC Chief Financial Officer Dennis Pettigrew said: “The model is tested periodically to ensure that it assesses changes in payor mix and payor collection percentages due to various temporal factors. and regular.”
Computer system conversions are among the factors that can skew the model, he said.
“The conversion of electronic medical records to Cerner CommunityWorks is still not working as originally planned. Over the past 12 months, gross accounts receivable have increased by nearly 70%, billings are being submitted slower, fictitious credit balances are increasing and cash flow went down,” Pettigrew said.
He continued: “This caused the computer model to suggest that our recovery rate is declining, an inconsistency which is being critically assessed by RMC finance staff and FORVIS. To be on the safe side, a negative adjustment to our recoveries expected was booked in July 2022 Financials. This action reduced net income.
The EMR upgrade and resulting distortion in the computerized financial reporting model reduced RMC’s cash position by $4.25 million in July and $26.4 million since the start of the year. ‘year.
During the board meeting, Pettigrew said, “We use this model, and it’s made up of only estimates of all of the factors associated with our accounts receivable. We recognize (put numbers in the financial statements) depending on what the model shows and with any tinkering we see on a monthly basis.”
“For much of July the model suggested that we needed to make a reserve adjustment, i.e. a reduction in net income, and you see that in the monthly financial statements. This model does currently undergoing a full review in terms of usability related to the accounts receivable that are being set up…under the Cerner facility,” he said.
RMC posted a net operating income loss of $4.8 million in July and a net operating income loss of $26.4 million year-to-date.
Adjusting for non-operating income, including investment income and contributions and grants, the hospital recorded a net income loss of $3.7 million in July.
Since the start of the year, the hospital has lost $16.6 million. The hospital had forecast a loss of $1.8 million.
In the area of non-operating revenue, Pettigrew said, “We recorded the $1 million grant we received from the USDA last month. We haven’t received the check yet. … We think that will happen hopefully before the end of August.”
In the meantime, Pettigrew said RMC had engaged FORVIS to make improvements to the financial model.
“It’s their model. We didn’t create it, they made it. So they’re actively working with us to make adjustments to it based on information from the Cerner model. We definitely think it will change or come back where we had been running as we prepared for the end of the fiscal year. Complicated factors, but it’s all about estimates,” he said.
The hospital’s 2022-2023 fiscal year begins Oct. 1.
Also during the meeting, RMC Vice President of Operations Sabrina N. Robinson said Edisto Regional Health Services saw visits under 518 budget in July. Overall, ERHS recorded revenue that was $29,669 below budget.
Year-to-date, visits were $1,737 under budget and revenue was $607,190 under budget for the year.
One of the six medical practices that make up Edisto Regional Health Services was on budget this fiscal year, Robinson said.
Express Care for the month of July had 236 total visits and overall revenue was $21,964 over budget, Robinson said.
Total Express Care visits were 4,577 and revenue was $89,573 over budget for the year.
“We’ve had issues with vendors, but we’re getting over the bump because our new vendor…officially starts in October,” Robinson said.
Also, RMC Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer Michelle Edwards introduced Jonathan Ballentine as RMC’s new Director of Human Resources and Employee Health.
“Jonathan has been in the HR field for over 25 years, so he has a good understanding of HR policies, processes, operations within HR, talent acquisition, so we are certainly looking forward to enjoy it,” Edwards said. said.
Ballentine said, “I am very happy to be here and to serve RMC and the community in this capacity. I appreciate this honor.
In other matters, the trustees went into closed session to receive reports from the president and community works and a number of updates, including those from his Edisto regional health services board and health committees. director development and strategic planning.