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Springfield Medical Care Systems Working to Get in Stable Condition



Valley News Staff Writer
Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Springfield, Vt. — In the wake of the departures of Springfield Medical Care Systems’ CFO and CEO earlier this month, board members are working to fill the vacancies and to determine a way to stabilize the organization’s finances.

SMCS officials met with Vermont state regulators from the Green Mountain Care Board and Agency of Human Services on Monday to outline their plans, according to a news release the organization, which includes Springfield Hospital, issued on Tuesday.

“We recognize the urgency of our situation and are moving quickly to complete a thorough assessment and make timely improvements,” George Lamb, chairman of the SMCS board of directors, said in the release. “While this is a challenging time for our organization, we have never been more united in our commitment to ensuring that SMCS and Springfield Hospital remain viable and continue to fill a critical need in the communities we serve.”

In addition to the hospital, SMCS, a federally qualified health center, includes clinics in Charlestown and in the Vermont communities of Springfield, Ludlow, Londonderry and Rockingham.

Despite the recent turmoil — including operating losses in recent years, a change of emergency department providers, employee morale issues and difficulty paying vendors — Lamb and Chief of Practice Operations Josh Dufresne, currently the primary administrative contact for the health care system, said in the release that there’s been “no interruption to patient care.”

SMCS leaders are finalizing the appointment of interim CFO and CEO, Lamb said in the release. Both candidates would bring “extensive experience working with critical access hospitals and federally qualified health centers, as well as a successful history of improving financial operations,” the release says.

The health system also is working with the Tennessee-based consulting group Quorum Health Resources to evaluate its operations and finances. As SMCS officials review this data, they will implement changes, according to the release. Officials previously have said a report from Quorum is expected in February or March.

“With the leadership and guidance of the SMCS and Springfield Hospital Boards of Directors, we are working diligently to address operational issues with a focus on improving cash flow, ensuring continued access to supplies and equipment and strengthening the trust of our patients, employees and community members,” Dufresne said in the release.

Nora Doyle-Burr can be reached at ndoyleburr@vnews.com or 603-727-3213.