By Rich Wicks | Times Vedette

The Guthrie County Hospital Board of Trustees held a monthly meeting on Jan. 25, and the trustees discussed possible wage market pay increases for employees. 

“We budgeted for raises for employees for their merit raises, which we did in September,” CEO Chris Stipe said. “This is a market raise, and for whatever reason, I wasn’t here during the budget process so I don’t know why, but we did not budget for market raises. Every year, the Iowa Health Association publishes pay rates, and we try to stay with the median rates for our jobs that match up to those.”

Stipe explained that the impact for the remainder of this fiscal year (through June 30) would be just over $69,000. He added that the finance department proposes approval of the increases. The trustees voted unanimously to approve the plan as proposed.

The hospital’s Employee of the Quarter was Danielle Lauzon, clinical safety and quality coordinator. Lauzon also provided a quarterly report of the hospital’s quality and patient satisfaction data.

The trustees approved the purchase of several pieces of ENT equipment at a total cost of $82,232. It is expected that the hospital’s foundation will cover $50,000 of that amount.

Foundation Director Dennis Flanery shared information on a variety of upcoming foundation fundraising events. A cornhole tournament will be held on Saturday, Feb. 24, with proceeds going toward scholarships. Handbags and Bingo will be held on Friday, April 5, with proceeds to the Nursing Endowment. The annual golf tournament will be Tuesday, July 9, with proceeds earmarked for the courtesy van and general expenses.

The GCH Foundation and Auxiliary will hold bingo every Thursday in February with a freewill donation meal from 4:45-6 p.m. followed by bingo from 6-8 p.m. The Thursday meals and bingo will be held at the Guthrie Center Activity Center, 209 State St.

The board’s next regular meeting will be Thursday, Feb. 22 at 4 p.m. The public is welcome at all Guthrie County Hospital board meetings, in person or remotely, other than occasional special closed meetings. To attend remotely: Phone 1-469-208-1512 code: 915921694# or attend via Microsoft Teams meeting ID: 270 117 496 60 and enter code: PUrhxW