Preliminary financial numbers show Franklin Medical Center losing $1.4 million in total income in its current fiscal year before a Payback Protection Program (PPP) loan is possibly forgiven by the federal government.

FMC borrowed $2.5 million during the COVID-19 pandemic through the PPP loan program.

Billy Page, FMC chief financial officer, presented the financial report to Board of Commissioners at their monthly meeting June 3. The April financial report represents FMC’s fiscal year end.

“There are a couple things that puts this in perspective,” Page said. “We have filed for PPP forgiveness. We have no reason to believe it won’t be 100 percent forgiven and that’s $2.5 million, but we don’t know when (it will be forgiven.)”

Concerning the finances, Page or hospital auditors do not know if the loan is forgiven, or if they apply funds to this year’s budget or next year’s budget.

“When exactly do we get to register (the money)?” Said Blake Kramer, FMC administer. “The loan was given. The loan was reported. When the forgiveness actually comes in, nobody knows.”

Either way, hospital management must wait for official notice of loan forgiveness.

“You might take a hit this year and look really bad, but next year you probably are going to look really good because all that income is going to get counted on next year’s financials,” Kramer said. “That is just something we are going to have to be prepared for.”

FMC’s annual budget was tabulated prior to COVID-19.

“Couple of items (on the budget) could make a huge difference in the financial statements,” Page said. “This year had a lot of uncertainties. We will have to wait to see.”

In other financial figures, net operating revenue totaled $34.3 million, and total operating expenses were listed at $37.03 million, according to preliminary numbers. Non-operating income amounted to $1.3 million.

Largest source of income for the year was outpatient revenue totaling 65 percent gross billing or $56.3 million. Largest hospital expenses were salaries and wages at $14.9 million followed by contract services at $8.7 million.

Total patients admitted to FMC amounted to 1,565, down 234 from the previous year, according to preliminary numbers.

Emergency room visits totaled 7,967, down 1,085 from the previous year.

FMC performed 153,360 lab and 23,502 radiology procedures for fiscal year 2020-2021, the largest two procedure categories. Lab procedures were up 17,390 from last year while radiology procedures were down 751. 

Winnsboro North and South rural clinics continue to lead in patients visits. Winnsboro South saw 28,426 patient encounters while Winnsboro North showed 13,158 during the 2020-2021 fiscal year.

Clinics in Newellton, St. Joseph, Crowville and Gilbert presented fewer numbers. Newellton registered 2,682, St. Joseph 2,375, Crowville 2,620 and newly opened Gilbert seen 455 patients.

“Smaller clinics were down, but hopefully they will come back,” Page said.

Meanwhile, Board of Commissioners agreed to budget expenditures of third floor computer carts for potential isolated patients and new hospital beds with increased functionality.

The new beds will replace older beds and be available for potential critical patients and patients recovering from surgery, “especially given the amount of joint replacements we are doing now,” Kramer said.

Additionally, Board of Commissioners agreed to purchase new lights, an ultraviolet disinfectant system to allow for greater infection control and an ER patient monitoring system that allows for a more comprehensive patient display. Commissioners also agreed to purchase new surgical cauterization system and an ice and water machine for the main patient floor.

In other action, Board of Commissioners entered into a three-year remote monitoring contract with Verustat.

“Medicare and Medicare Advantage will pay you a certain amount of money now to monitor patients in their homes,” Kramer said.

When a patient with certain symptoms comes into a clinic for an appointment they will be asked if they want the service. 

“The idea is if you monitor people at home then maybe you can nip ER visits in the bud,” Kramer said. “We’ve tried this in the past but wasn’t able to make it work. Connectivity was a big problem. Verustat seem to believe they can fix a lot of those issues.”

Kramer added the monitoring system was not “big brother in the home” and was not going to be invasive.

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