Spencer Hospital Trustees Approve New Strategic Plan

posted on Friday, August 27, 2021 in General

The Spencer Hospital Board of Trustees approved a new five-year strategic plan at its monthly meeting on Thursday.

“The hospital’s strategic plan provides a framework to advance a wide-range of goals in support of  Spencer Hospital’s mission  to provide exceptional healthcare in our region,” commented hospital president Bill Bumgarner. “A new strategic plan is developed every five years; however, it’s reviewed and updated annually based on progress achieved and new circumstances”

Bumgarner said the new plan approved on Thursday focuses on four overarching priorities, with a focus to  be responsive to evolving patient service needs, offering healthcare options for people close to home;  maintaining and further developing physician services; and managing expenses and business outcomes.  Specific goals and strategies were developed around the major priorities.

“One of the most significant changes in the healthcare industry in recent years is the growth of consumerism,” said Hospital President Bill Bumgarner. “As is the case in many industries, customers have more options available to them and are willing to travel if needed to locate the services they want.  We recognize the importance of understanding and offering patients what they seek based on the capacity of a hospital in a rural market to do.”

Bumgarner also noted the plan’s emphasis on medical staff development.

“Understanding that a physician clinic is the front door to hospital services has always been an area of emphasis in the Spencer medical community,” he said. “That means investing in physician recruitment and retention; ensuring access to modern facilities and technologies; and advancing relationships with physician groups at both the service and business level.”

Bumgarner shared that improving care quality, enhancing patient satisfaction and new service development are a given in any hospital’s strategic plan. He explained that achieving needed business outcomes is another consistent challenge.   

“Managing expenses and business outcomes must be a priority for all hospitals,” said Bumgarner. “In the face of limited year-over-year payment increases from government and commercial insurance programs, operational efficiency is critical to ensure the financial outcomes required for continued investment in services, technology and facilities.  An added dollar in service revenue typically results in just 50 cents in bottom-line impact while a dollar of cost savings equates to a full dollar in bottom-line impact. Understanding that equation is the key to hospital financial stability.”

The hospital’s strategic plan was developed based on input from a wide-range of stakeholders as well as an assessment of trends in the healthcare industry. An independent consultant interviewed members of local physician practices; the Board of Trustees; hospital business and service-level partners; a community focus group; and hospital leaders.

“Spencer Hospital values its wide-range of constructive relationships with its many stakeholders and the community at large,” said Bumgarner. “We don’t take those relationships for granted and are very fortunate to enjoy such consistent and positive support. It’s a significant reason behind Spencer Hospital’s success and its responsiveness to the healthcare needs of the many communities it serves throughout the region.”