September 26, 2012 06:44 PM Eastern Daylight Time
BINGHAM MEMORIAL HOSPITAL ANNOUNCES INDEPENDENT
LEGAL REVIEW RESULTS
Board of Directors Puts in Place Policies to Ensure Transparency to the Community, Eliminate “Atmosphere of Fear”, Ensure Administration Accountability to the Board of Directors
BLACKFOOT, Idaho--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Bingham Memorial Hospital today announced the completion and findings of the independent review ordered by Bingham Memorial Hospital Board of Directors and executed by third party law firm, Holland & Hart. Having reviewed the results of the report, the Board of Directors for Bingham Memorial Hospital has implemented an initiative to increase transparency and processes for employees wishing to communicate a concern anonymously.
“The media portrayed an atmosphere of fear around the hospital that prevented employees coming directly through existing hospital channels, even though there were processes in place that allowed anonymous reporting. After reading the Holland & Hart review, it was clear that additional measures were needed”
Initiated in June of this year, the review was commissioned to thoroughly investigate seven incidents reported in May through the media to determine the circumstances of the reports as well as what corrective actions may be indicated.
The independent panel interviewed each party involved with the reports, conducted more than 90 interviews with current and former hospital employees, as well as other individuals, and searched more than 500,000 documents and email communications. The final review report found five of seven issues though serious, were largely procedural.
As part of this initiative, the board announced it would seek a new chief ethics officer to facilitate an employee’s ability to report a concern without fear of retaliation.
“The media portrayed an atmosphere of fear around the hospital that prevented employees coming directly through existing hospital channels, even though there were processes in place that allowed anonymous reporting. After reading the Holland & Hart review, it was clear that additional measures were needed,” said Dr. Clark Allen, speaking for the Board of Directors. “To that end, we have announced our intent to identify a chief ethics officer that will report to the Board and are building a set of new processes that will include a third party reporting structure in order to foster an atmosphere of increased transparency between employees and management. This should further improve the great work our staff is doing for patients of Bingham Memorial Hospital.”
The Board has also directed that regular hospital facility inspection results be made public going forward.
Chief Administrative Officer Louis Kraml said, “We welcome all inspections by regulatory authorities at Bingham Memorial Hospital as they only make our processes better. Additionally, we offered our full cooperation with all requests from the review panel. We will continue to provide any background and information needed to ensure this hospital is well in compliance and that employees feel confident that their concerns will be addressed quickly and effectively.”
Based on the findings of the review, the Board requested Mr. Kraml take 60 days and put in place measures that will further address the findings of the review. In addition, the Board of Directors will adjust employment contracts so that relationships like that of the Saipan hospital will be subject to Board approval in the future.
About Bingham Memorial Hospital
Bingham Memorial Hospital is a 501(c)3 non-profit critical access hospital located in Blackfoot, Idaho. Bingham Memorial Hospital is committed to the pursuit of excellence in our endeavor to provide a continuum of quality, compassionate healthcare services for our residents and for visitors to Southeast Idaho, in the most efficient and cost effective manner possible.