Archive for the ‘Management’ Category

MCDH CEO/CFO Wayne Allen Retires from Hospital
—Posted Friday, December 5th, 2014 at 3:50 pm— « »

MCDH CEO/CFO Wayne Allen

Retiring CEO/CFO Wayne Allen (right) with Interim CFO Steve Miller and Interim CEO Jim Sato.

Board, staff, and community praise Allen’s service to MCDH, and enjoy a down home barbecue at farewell party

Fort Bragg, California – December 5, 2014 — Wayne Allen, Interim CEO/CFO of Mendocino Coast District Hospital for the past three years, retired on Thursday, December 4, handing the jobs over to Interim CEO James Sato and Interim CFO Steve Miller. Mr. Allen stated, “I’ve had a very wonderful journey—twice (referring to his first stint at MCDH from 2006–2008). I’ve appreciated all the support; we have a wonderful team here.”

At the Board of Directors meeting on Tuesday, December 2, Mr. Allen introduced both Sato and Miller as the team who will take the hospital through the next three to five months during the continued search for a permanent CEO and CFO. Mr. Allen said, “These guys are going to fit in well. They’ve already met our department heads. We’ve been working steadily for the past 48 hours to make the transition as smooth as possible.”

Mr. Sato, who was CEO of MCDH from 1991–1994, has 39 years experience in healthcare administration and is well-respected by long-time staff at MCDH. Mr. Miller, from Dallas, Texas, has 30 years experience as a hospital and medical center financial officer. He stated, “I thank you all for placing your trust in me, and I look forward to being here.”

Mr. Allen received many well wishes and kudos for his service to the hospital at a going away party in the hospital’s cafeteria on Wednesday, December 3. Requesting grilled hamburgers and hot dogs for his going away party, barbecue chefs Will Lee, Medical Staff Services Manager, and John Funderburk, Maintenance Manager, were happy to oblige, saying, “It’s Wayne’s day; what Wayne wants, Wayne gets.”

Inside the cafeteria, Chief Nursing Officer Terry Murphy, RN, and Administrative Assistant Gayl Moon served up barbecue, along with a side dish of tasty Santa Maria beans, homemade by Nutrition Services Coordinator Shonda Sanders. A salad and condiments bar rounded out the fare and dessert was a German Chocolate Cake, Mr. Allen’s favorite.

Outgoing Health Care District Board President Patricia Juaregui-Darland stated that Mr. Allen had been a wonderful partner to the board during his tenure and that she would miss his jovial banter. Staff presented Mr. Allen with cards and a framed photograph by hospital staff member Mark Scheffer, who is also a fine art landscape photographer.

Mr. Allen will be staying on at MCDH as a part-time consultant to complete several special projects that are pending. He is looking forward to spending more time with his family “who has been missing me” at his home in Reno, Nevada.

Farewell Party Photo Gallery

Hospital Mediation Process Concludes Without Agreement
—Posted Friday, September 14th, 2012 at 1:13 pm— « »

For the past three months, officials from our hospital have been meeting with a San Francisco mediator and our major creditors, including UFCW8 and Cal Mortgage,  in an attempt to negotiate a settlement agreement that would reduce expenses by $3 million per year.   Unfortunately, the mediation process was concluded on Wednesday, September 5, without a mutual agreement.

The mediation process was conducted according to a new California State law that requires municipalities, such as Mendocino Coast District Hospital, to engage in such mediation sessions prior to filing a Chapter 9 bankruptcy.  The process is highly confidential and details may not be released by anyone who participated in the mediation process.

MCDH Board Takes Action

The conclusion of the mediation process gives MCDH the right to file for a Chapter 9 bankruptcy but does not require that it does so.

Since the mediation process concluded without an agreement on a recovery plan, the Board of Directors authorized management, during a Special Meeting on September 10, to ask that an attorney draft a bankruptcy resolution to be presented to the Hospital Board at its regular meeting on September 27.   It will be up to the Board and Management at that time to decide if a Chapter 9 filing is in the best interest of MCDH, and if so, when such a filing might take place.

Financial Recovery Plan

The Board also took action to require management to create an action plan for financial recovery that would be presented at the same Board meeting.  The action plan will include savings that can be generated from a variety of sources, and will not be limited to 1 or 2 areas only.  The Board will have both documents in hand as it deliberates next steps for financial recovery.

What You Need to Know … (more…)

Reinstating 3% Pay Raise for Employees Wins Board Approval
—Posted Thursday, July 19th, 2012 at 3:20 pm— « »

I am pleased to the report that the Mendocino Coast District Hospital Board of Directors, on my recommendation, today agreed to reinstate the 3% pay increase for our staff that is included in the current memorandum of understanding with the United Food and Commercial Workers Union (UFCW).

The 3% pay increase will apply to all bargaining unit and non-bargaining unit employees except for one (me) and will be effective on July 8, 2012.  Employees will see the increase on your next pay check which will be released on July 27.

I am taking this action because I know that it is up to me to change the collision course that we are currently on.  By taking this action I have asked UFCW, and our other creditors, to commit to participation in the mediation process that has already been set up and scheduled to occur in the first week of August.

I am committing that I will do whatever is humanly possible for me to do to keep MCDH out of bankruptcy, including developing a recovery plan that MCDH and our creditors can live with.

I view bankruptcy as a lose-lose-lose situation for our hospital, our community and our employees.  The only thing worse than bankruptcy is closure of our hospital.  Neither course is acceptable.  Our hospital is too important to our loyal staff, our community and to our entire region, to fail.

My City Council Statement About The Hospital’s Financial Improvement Plan and Part-Time Employees Misinterpreted
—Posted Tuesday, March 27th, 2012 at 6:50 pm— « »

Last night, I appeared briefly before the Fort Bragg City Council to discuss the hospital’s financial problems and how we are coping. I had been invited by Council Member Meg Courtney. The Council members and Mayor Dave Turner were very supportive in their comments.

Most of my short presentation focused on the great people who work here at the hospital and the great service they provide to the community.

I also mentioned that one of the actions we are considering — and this has been public for several weeks — is the possibility of eliminating some — not all — part-time positions to reduce costs.

If you tuned into KOZT this morning, you heard reporter Joe Regelski tell listeners that I told the City Council the hospital was going to eliminate “some” part-time positions. However, employees who heard the morning news heard it as “all” part-time employees would be eliminated. This is not true and it is an unfortunate illustration of how things get blown out of proportion, causing rumors.

After the report, personnel received a flood of calls from panicked part-time employees worried about their jobs.

I am sorry this happened because the current situation is stressful enough on employees and the community. It is also why I am writing regular updates in my blog so that employees, patients and others in the community understand exactly what is happening.

Remember, If you have a question about these or other hospital-related matters, email me directly at

Union – Management Meeting Update

During a March 22 meeting, the hospital presented the employee union with financial projections for the next few months and for the new fiscal year beginning July 1. The union responded today by saying they will have their own analyst review the hospital’s projections before responding to the hospital’s Financial Improvement Plan. We view this as positive progress.

Financial Update to the City of Fort Bragg Council Tonight (Monday, 3/26)
—Posted Monday, March 26th, 2012 at 6:14 pm— « »

As you know, we met March 22 with representatives of United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW), the union that represents all hospital employees, to discuss hospital finances and how we might work together on implementing a Financial Improvement Plan. As of 5pm, we haven’t heard a response from the union, but expect it tomorrow or the next day.

In the meantime, I’m addressing the Fort Bragg City Council tonight to tell them where we are in our overall Financial Improvement Plan process.

I am attending the meeting at the invitation of Council Member Meg Courtney. I recently met with Meg and other community leaders to discuss the hospital’s financial situation and she felt that a presentation to the Council would be most welcome.

Based on my past experiences with the Council, I expect a warm reception.

For those interested in reading about our financial situation, click here to learn about the causes and our blueprint for improving it.

Welcome Back Wayne Allen!
—Posted Friday, September 9th, 2011 at 1:51 pm— « »

Wayne Allen, CFO

Wayne Allen, CFO


I am very pleased to announce that Wayne Allen has accepted the position of Chief Financial Officer for Mendocino Coast District Hospital, replacing Bob Anderson.  Wayne is one of the best CFOs that I have ever had the pleasure to work with and I am could not be happier that he has chosen to come back to MCDH.  He was our CFO  from 2006 to 2008, during a period when MCDH converted to critical access hospital designation and achieved an impressive financial turnaround.    For the past 2 years Wayne served as the Chief Financial Officer for Northern Hawaii Community Hospital on the Big Island of Hawaii.  That hospital, too, thrived under his leadership.   With National Health Care Reform, the California budget crisis and our current economy, it is a difficult financial time for hospitals, including Mendocino Coast Hospital.  We are extremely fortunate to have Wayne Allen back on our leadership team.  Welcome home Wayne!

Ray Day at NCFHC
—Posted Tuesday, October 26th, 2010 at 10:02 am— « »


From left to right, Steve, Tammy, Heidi, Fred and Ray

My second “Adopt A CEO” Day was held last Friday at North Coast Family Health Center, MCDH’s Primary Care and Specialty Care Clinic.  I greatly appreciated the time that everyone at NCFHC took in order to make me feel “at home,” while spending the day in our clinic.  The staff made sure that I got the full experience including working every aspect of a normal clinic day from Patient Registration in the morning to Medical Records chart pulling and distribution to touring the clinical areas.  If you called the NCFHC after lunch on Friday, it just might have been me answering the telephone as well.  And I finished the day by touring our Surgical offices in Suite B and helping them keep up with their workload by assembling patient charts for future patient visits.  I had always heard about the monumental task of maintaining a paper medical records system for a clinic of this size (we average about 130 patients per day).  This was my opportunity to see how our paper system works (or some might say, doesn’t work).  On Friday I got a first hand view of why the eventual conversion to electronic medical records will be a huge time saver for some members of the staff (and will probably increase the workload for others).  But it is necessary.  There is no doubt in my mind that the paperless systems of the future will help us to provide better quality medical care in a more timely manner.   (more…)

Not So Undercover Boss
—Posted Friday, September 3rd, 2010 at 6:45 pm— « »

Morgan and Jason

Jason Haefeli and Morgan Daniel in the field

On Wednesday of this week I had the privilege of spending 12 hours with the Mendocino Coast District Hospital’s Fort Bragg stationed ambulance crew, which included Morgan Daniel, Paramedic and Jason Haefeli, EMT.  Mark Klosterman, Paramedic and Daniel (“Dano”) Justice-Greenwald, also worked that day, stationed in Mendocino.  This is part of a new program that I am beginning at our hospital in which I will spend 1 day per month in a hospital department.  I have been inspired by my peers, Todd Linden,  CEO at Grinnell Regional Medical Center in Grinnell, Iowa who routinely performs WalkRounds at his facility (same idea, 1 day per month in hospital departments) and Gary Boyd of the Southern Mono Healthcare District, located in Mammoth Lakes, California who performs “Rounding for Outcomes.”   In my very first Hospital CEO position, 24 years ago, I initiated a similar program which I called “Adopt an Administrator.”   It is immensely valuable to spend the day with our “front line” staff and to “walk in their shoes,” so to speak.    And it is also, just as important for the staff to get to know me better and to feel like they can talk to me about anything that is on their minds.