10 W Fallon Ave Baker, MT 59313
Fallon County of Montana

FMC Board of Trustees Meeting – March 2023

FMC Board of Trustees Meeting – March 2023



Wednesday, March 1, 2023

MEMBERS PRESENT                               ABSENT                              

Curt Arnell, Vice President                         Doug Varner, President

Evelyn Neary, Secretary                             Betty Mueller, Board Member

Alice Kay Schweigert, Board Member      Elaine Stanhope, Board Member

David Kirschten, Board Member                Marissa Skogen, Recorder

            OTHERS PRESENT                      

            David Espeland, CEO

            Marjorie Losing, CFO


Curt called the meeting of the FMC Board of Trustees to order at 5:32 p.m. in the FMC Community Room. 

  1. – Terri and David Mahoney inquired about the original documents of the election results rather than color copies. The county sent the originals to Doug, who authorized Curt to open the envelope at this board meeting in front of Mrs. Mahoney and allow her to examine them. Ev Neary read aloud an apology for the error from the county.  Mrs. Mahoney compared the documents from the envelope to the ones in FMC’s possession and declared that we were originally sent color copies, not originals.  She confirmed that the originals were not altered or reproduced in any way, given that the color copies were identical facsimiles of the originals.  She declared this issue fully resolved and expressed her appreciation to the board for assisting her in getting to the bottom of it.


No additions or corrections to the February 1, 2023 board minutes as distributed. Alice Kay made a motion to approve the minutes. Dave seconded. Minutes stand approved as written.  Doug will be asked to sign upon his return.

  2. Nursing Services: Michelle Smith, Director of Nursing, went over her staffing numbers, our current census is 14 for LTC and 0 for IP. We received our new Stryker beds for Acute Care. Our census for IP and ER is down, but our OP procedures are staying strong. For staff education, Michelle has pulled out equipment and reviewed it with her staff so that they stay up-to-date with their skills. Additionally, our nurses will be participating in the Trauma Nursing Core Course (TNCC) program to refresh them on the processes needed for trauma events. Our C.N.A.’s get refreshed on C.N.A. skills based on the state of Montana requirements to maintain certification. There will be a C.N.A. class June 19th – 30th.   Eldon and Michelle went to a Miles City Job Fair and got to talk with freshmen and sophomore students who showed some interest in working at FMC. Eldon absorbed the Pharmacy Technician job duties. Nursing services is working with Rexall to look into scanning medication barcodes as a double-check for patient safety. Michelle reported recruitment is her biggest issue for both Nursing and D.I. She would like to see more public postings to show our community that we are a fun and great place to work. Michelle wants to help encourage students at the career fair to look into careers in nursing and DI.
  3. Social Services: Jeanna reported what she does for the facility to the Board. She does all of the admissions; she helps families apply for Medicaid; she refers patients to community resources; she participates in discharge planning; she works with both inpatient and swing bed patients; she assists in advanced directives; she shares that she does all of the hours for the Pink Touch and beauty shop; Jeanna provides family support; contacts the family when the resident is in need of something. Jeanna reported that we are a flat rate facility so we receive a lot of North Dakota residents, who pay for service by acuity in that state.
  4. Activities: Karla  reported on the special events, holiday parties, and programs that she holds for the residents and swing bed patients. With the lower number of residents, Karla shared that her workload has been better. Karla explained how the RA’s assist her with activities. Further discussion between Karla and the Board occurred about activities.
  1. Collections Policy – Katie DuCharme: Katie presented to the Board the Accounts Receivable and Collection process in Thrive sharing how the old EMR, Centriq, was a guarantor-based system while Thrive is a visit-based system. In-depth discussion occurred amongst Katie and the Board as to various options that FMC could choose to collect payments based on limitations of the Thrive system. The Board suggested that various options be explored in depth and bring data to the Board by April 1st.

Marjorie Losing went over the January financials with the Board of Trustees. January was a very slow month with 8 IP days and 2 Skilled Days. Gross Revenue for the month of January was $674,117 while the budgeted amount was $917,029. Net Operating Revenue was $714,464 while the budgeted amount was $938,874. Expenses for the month of January were $1,030,783 while the budgeted amount was $1,072,425. A large portion of our expenses were travel costs for the Thrive team, however, overall expenses are starting to dwindle. Operating Loss was ($316,320). Net Loss was ($298,125) (Enclosure). Marjorie has been interacting with a business intelligence software program built into Thrive and she’s excited about the outcome she has seen so far and how they will help with stats. Once she builds customized dashboards for FMC, the resultant data will be very useful.

  1. MiKenna O’Donnell, OT Contract Renewal: MiKenna renewed her contract, and expressed an appreciation to the Board.
  • Provider Visit Update: The Board was informed that Tylyn is visiting a few other sites before making a decision about where she wants to be.
  • Board Training Reminder: The Board of Trustees training will be Monday, March 6, 2023 at 5:30 p.m. Marissa will send out a reminder to the Board.
  • HR Study Progress: Marissa was absent so she could not provide the Board with an update. She will update next board meeting.

  1. Employees’ Years of Service Awards (Enclosure): FMC has had a years of service program in place for a number of years, but it seems to be outdated. Discussion occurred as to the various options that could be considered to refresh the program. Ev made a motion to accept the proposed policy, but boost the cash payment to $10 per year of service. Alice Kay seconded the motion. All were in favor. Motion was approved.
  • Provider Credentialing (Enclosure): New board members were given a short tutorial about how credentialing works, and then the board was asked to grant privileges to various providers after considering their credentialing information. Ev moved to approve all providers as presented and Dave seconded the motion. All were in favor.
  • Trustee Appointment: Betty Mueller retired from the Board after 17 years, effective this meeting.  The board discussed potential candidates.


The Board adjourned their regular session having completed the agenda.

-s\ Doug Varner, President

Marjorie Losing, Recorder

Marissa Skogen, Transcriber