From the pages of
Sublette Examiner
Volume 3, Number 20 - August 14, 2003
brought to you online by Pinedale Online

Air conditioning in the works for clinics

by Cat Urbigkit

On Monday evening, the Sublette County Rural Health Care District board met in Pinedale for more than three hours with all board members present with the exception of Bill Barney.

Board member Garry Eiden Sr. broached the subject of the need to seal the pavement at the Marbleton/Big Piney Clinic. Eiden said he would solicit interest in the work and it will be discussed at next month's board meeting.

Board members Barney and Mary Lynn Worl spent some time in the last month investigating the possibility of installing air conditioning systems in the county's two clinics, Worl reported.

Pinedale Medical Clinic representative Lesta Winer reported that although several fans were kept running in the Pinedale clinic, on recent hot days, temperatures in various rooms of the building soared into the high 80s and 90s.

Board Chairman Walt Bousman reported that Barney had told him that temperatures in the Marbleton clinic were found to be in the 90s.

Talk turned to the possibility of swamp coolers and the need to get a system capable of expanding as the clinic expands, but Eiden suggested the board act quickly to just get the air conditioners installed "and get it over with."

Although the board discussed bypassing the bidding process to avoid stalling the project for another month, it did decide that its plan of action will be to advertise for bids and plan on awarding the bid at the next meeting.

Worl said local companies should be contacted about their interest, while the clinic operating physicians should be contacted about when it would be convenient to have the workers in the buildings doing the installation.

When the board reached the portion of its agenda addressing emergency medical technician business, it adjourned into executive session to discuss applications for the paid EMT positions and to discuss a personnel issue, according to Bousman. Pinedale EMTs Wil Gay and Cori Laster were invited in for a portion of the closed-door discussions, as were several applicants for the paid EMT position.

After more than an hour behind closed doors, the board reconvened in open session, announcing that it had taken no action. The board thanked those who submitted applications and agreed to hire Jackie Strike as a part-time EMT.

Gay reported that the design of the new sign for the Pinedale ambulance barn has been approved by the EMTs and the group is soliciting price estimates from various companies.

Board member Jerry Jensen complained that the sign issue has been ongoing since before he came on the board, although it was approved for funding. He warned: "From now on, if we approve something, there's going to be a time limit on it, as far as I'm concerned. ... We've been screwing with this sign for eight months."

Gay said the issue should be resolved at the next board meeting, to which Jensen responded, "I can tell you right now that if it isn't done by the next board meeting, I'm going to vote to shit-can it."

The board discussed the problem experienced by a Big Piney EMT who sustained a physical injury and is unable to pay her medical insurance, which she receives through the district's plan. The EMT requested that the board pay her insurance costs of $265 per month, with the EMT committed to reimbursing the district once her condition has improved.

Worl made the motion that the board pay the EMT's insurance for the next four months and revisit the issue at that time. Eiden said he wouldn't mind helping the EMT out, but not in the form of a blanket four-months.

Although Worl's motion died for lack of a second, Jensen moved that the board pay the insurance cost on a month-to-month basis, with the board receiving monthly progress reports from the EMT. The motion passed.

Eiden noted that the board needs to have a letter from a doctor explaining the EMT's condition, to which RHCD Clerk Jauna McGinnis said is already in the file.

McGinnis asked that the board institute a policy making the direct deposit of payroll mandatory for the EMTs, rather than the option it is now. She said there are 11 EMTs doing the direct deposit, but 30 aren't. The board declined, stating that they doubted the legality of doing so and noting that direct deposit should be the option of the individuals, not mandatory.

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