2021 Annual General Meeting
The 2021 Annual General Meeting was held on Monday, June 28 at 7:00 pm via an electronic meeting.
Notes for remarks by Mr. Dave Perley, Almonte General Hospital Board Chair - June 28, 2021
As Chair of the Almonte General Hospital Board I am pleased to provide a Board Chair report for the 2020-2021 year.
I would like to start this report by offering a quote from former British Prime Minister, Benjamin Disraeli who once said and I quote “There is no education like adversity.” I would say that this pretty much sums up the past year and, in my view, means our excellent front line workers, in all of our entities, are very, very well educated! I would like to take this opportunity on behalf of the Board of Directors to thank each and every one of our excellent staff for their dedication and demanding work over the past year.
The completion of the Clinical Services plan in May which is yet another example of the cooperation between the two hospitals. Conceived through the MRHA in 2018 and formally kicked off in 2019 the questions that needed answering were: How the services delivered by the two hospitals can be combined for future planning purposes and how the communities served by the individual hospitals can be combined to provide an increased population size for enhanced future program planning.
Our application for the CT Scan is proceeding apace at the Ministry of Health and the Hospital Foundation, again facing the headwinds of COVID, continue to provide significant annual funding in support of this significant purchase and much needed diagnostic tool. Special thanks here to Foundation Chair, Rob Scott, and Managing Director Al Roberts and his excellent team. If you haven’t seen the video which was distributed last Friday, regarding the importance of the CT to the region, please take few minutes to review. Starring roles for both our CEO and COS. Very well done.
I would like to highlight the work that the Lanark County Paramedic Service has done with respect to their COVID response. They worked in partnership with the local Health Unit operating the Covid Assessment, Testing and Vaccination services. They worked 12 hours a day and 7 days a week to keep our catchment area as safe as it could be. This, in addition to their regular life saving work. Special thanks to Chief Travis Mellema and his team for the great work they do and have done. I would also like to recognize as part of this report the Bravery Awards bestowed on the following 4 paramedics by the Minister of Health and Deputy Premier of Ontario, the Honourable Christine Elliott. Congratulations to Janice Steele, Thomas Quilliam, Bryan Pollock and Gord Cobus for your ‘grace under fire’ and for the everyday work that you do.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank Kimberley Harbord and her team for their hard work and leadership on the Finance and Audit file. Kimberley has literally looked at every area within the hospital with a view to improving cost efficiency, without affecting the healthcare delivery, to improve our overall financial position. I would also like to acknowledge Lyman Gardner, the Committee Chair for Finance and Audit for his personal leadership and support to the team.
Randy Shaw continues to keep the lights on and all of our facilities running at peak efficiency. If you ever need to put a roof on a building in the middle of winter please talk to Randy. He is a magician. Jason Hann joined the Senior Team over the past year and made an immediate impact. He has done a stellar job of improving the overall quality of the care as well as the excellent reporting of same.
In July of 2020 we introduced a new Chief of Staff to Almonte. I say ‘new’ insofar as this is Dr. Graeme McKillop’s second tour of duty as Chief of Staff. Never easy to step into this role during a pandemic but he did a great job working with the other Doctors, especially in the areas of assessment and testing and vaccination. Welcome back Dr. McKillop.
I would like to express the Board’s appreciation to Dr. Ursula McGarry for her role as President of the Medical Staff since March of 2017. The Board provided Dr. McGarry with a bouquet of flowers earlier today as recognition for work here.
Perhaps the greatest accomplishment of the past year was the fact that there were no Covid outbreaks at the Hospital, the Fairview Manor and the Lanark County Paramedic Service. The leadership exhibited, once again, by our President and CEO is in a word…exemplary. Mary Wilson Trider has pretty much re-built our senior team over the past few years and with the implementation of the Huron methodology has managed to create a standard operating procedure and language familiar to all staff. We are very fortunate indeed to have such competence at the top leading the way.
To my Director colleagues on the Board I wish to thank you for your support over the past year. Your patience with our meeting technology….. often heard refrains like “you’re muted”…… “turn your video on”…. “can you hear me?”…. “my internet is unstable” and so on were all phrases we heard throughout committee and Board meetings. Despite the hurdles and inconveniences we were able to provide the Hospital, Fairview Manor and LCPS with a strong form of Governance. Your conscientious and dedicated approach to all facets of your work on the Board were very much appreciated. I look forward to another exciting year, maybe even in person, working with each and everyone of you.
Lastly, but in no way least, I want to express my sincere appreciation to Tina McLelland for her support for me, and the Board, over the past year. I have probably tested her patience beyond belief but her knowledge of the subject matter we deal with is second to none. Thank you so much Tina.
That concludes my Chair’s report for 2020-2021.
Dave Perley, Board Chair
Notes for remarks by Mrs. Mary Wilson Trider, President & CEO, Almonte General Hospital - June 28, 2021
I am pleased to provide my report to the 66th Annual General Meeting of the Almonte General Hospital Corporation and to celebrate the accomplishments of another year in the life of Almonte General Hospital, Fairview Manor and Lanark County Paramedic Service.
COVID-19 has tested all of us – our ingenuity, our clinical skill, our patience our leadership, and, most of all, our resilience. We have all managed challenges on the home front while coming to a workplace full of uncertainty, change, and sometimes fear. Our staff and medical staff have more than risen to the occasion, continuing to provide excellent care for our patients and residents while keeping themselves and each other safe.
Families of our patients and residents have also been tested by the various restrictions on visiting and in particular restrictions on accompanying patients into the Emergency Department and Obstetrics unit. Their patience and understanding throughout has been greatly appreciated and has also contributed to keeping everyone safe.
With pride and gratitude, I am pleased that we have not had a COVID outbreak in our Hospital, our Manor or our Paramedic Service.
A silver lining in our COVID cloud has been the opportunity to forge deeper relationships between our operating divisions and with our partners in Carleton Place & District Memorial Hospital, Leeds Grenville Lanark Public Health and the Town of Mississippi Mills. Thanks to the leadership of Drs. Steve Walker, Dr. Karen Turcotte, Jennifer Lindsay, Heather Graham and Chief Travis Mellema, a fixed COVID assessment and testing centre was established in the former ambulance base at AGH which was staffed by physicians and staff from both AGH, CPDMH and Lanark County Paramedic Service. Our paramedics have also been working with Public Health to provide mobile testing across Lanark County. In the 2020/21 fiscal year, this service provided 38,516 COVID tests to residents of Lanark County, Renfrew County the City of Ottawa and beyond, including a number of long term care home residents.
When our Operating Rooms and ambulatory care clinics re-opened, Patti Morton replaced Jen Lindsay and has very capably led the assessment and testing service as well as supporting Public Health’s vaccination clinics with logistics and staff. Needless to say, none of this would have happened without support from Housekeeping, Maintenance, Information Technology and others across the organization.
All of these efforts, in particular the tremendous work of our Lanark County Paramedic Team with operational leadership from Superintendent Janice Steele, served to highlight the value of community paramedicine for residents in our communities. Another silver lining in the COVID cloud has been the announcement of funding for community paramedics to support seniors in their homes across Lanark County for the next three years.
Hospital activity was affected across the board by COVID, with fewer Emergency Department and ambulatory care visits, inpatient stays and diagnostic tests. Fairview Manor was also affected by the various restrictions including our inability to use the respite bed which is such a valuable resource for family members caring for loved ones at home. The volume of calls to Lanark County Paramedic service was also affected.
Throughout the year, we have been mindful of our role as partners in a larger system of hospitals across the Champlain region. We have welcomed patients from other hospitals who were transferred here to make room for more seriously ill patients in Queensway Carleton, The Ottawa Hospital and Hopital Montfort, and we have welcomed several new surgeons who are using extra capacity in our Operating Room to help deal with the backlog which resulted from closures during the most serious periods of the COVID waves.
Before leaving the subject of COVID, I would like to recognize our partners at the Eastern Ontario Regional Laboratory Association for all they have done to process an incredible volume of COVID tests, and also Dr. Paula Stewart, our Medical Officer of Health, for her leadership of the COVID management and response. She and her team have worked countless hours to provide us with the best advice and guidance, based on ever-changing direction from various levels of government and other public health agencies.
Last year I spoke about the development of a clinical services plan that describes the role each of Almonte General Hospital (the corporation) and Carleton Place & District Memorial Hospital will play in serving our shared and growing catchment area.
The Clinical Services Plan was approved by the two hospital boards in May.
Building on the existing strengths of the organizations, the plan maintains core services of Emergency Department, Medical/Surgical Unit, Diagnostic Imaging Department and Operating Room in each hospital. Each organization already has areas of specialization, which serve our shared catchment area and which will be maintained and grown. At AGH, these include the Obstetrics and Complex Continuing Care units as well as Urology and Gynaecology surgery. At CPDMH, they include the Ambulatory Care and Telemedicine programs, along with Orthopaedic and ENT surgery. The data shows a growing need for General Surgery which can be enhanced in both hospitals.
The Clinical Services Plan identifies an interprofessional model of care as a key enabler for continued excellence. This will be introduced in both organizations. An information technology study will also be undertaken to ensure that our shared goal of as much care as close to home as possible is helped, not hindered, by our IT systems.
The Plan will serve as a guiding document for clinical service development, human resource planning and capital equipment planning and will be very helpful in our discussions with our partners in the new Lanark Leeds Grenville Ontario Health Team, who we were very pleased to join earlier this year. A number of these partners, including Lanark County Mental Health, the ConnectWell and Carebridge, are local Lanark County organizations with whom we have long established relationships.
With first year goals focussed on connecting patients to primary care and patients who have mental illness with the right resources, the OHT is in the process of submitting its spending plan to the Ministry of Health for approval.
At the operational level, collaboration between AGH and CPDMH identified countless opportunities to introduce improvements, including 21 new common processes. Thanks to the leadership of our Chiefs of Staff, Graeme McKillop and Jamie Fullerton, the medical leaders are now working more closely together.
The collaboration between the hospital Foundations has continued as well. Another car raffle is underway with the tickets still available for a lovely 2021 Chevy Blazer which will be drawn on July 8th. Thanks to the generosity of Keith Bean, owner of Bean Cars, this year’s raffle had two cars for two hospitals. Keith has been an outstanding supporter of both hospital organizations and we are very grateful.
We are also grateful to Lanark County Council which once again provided a grant of $100,000 to the AGH/FVM Foundation.
I would like to add my thanks to the Foundation Board and staff for everything they do to ensure that the Hospital and Manor have modern, up-to-date equipment to care for our patients and residents.
As many of you are aware, one of the important things that our Foundation has been focusing on is fundraising to bring CT Scan technology to our hospital. We are working closely with staff in the Ministry of Health’s Capital Branch to fulfil the planning requirements associated with installing such a major piece of equipment. I am optimistic that we will have good news to share on that front before next year’s Annual General Meeting.
I spoke a few moments ago about the commitment of our staff and medical staff. Ordinarily I would include our volunteers in my references to our care team but COVID restrictions have required that they stay at home. To our volunteers – we miss you and look forward to welcoming you back.
To our dedicated staff and medical staff, thank you to all those who have gone above and beyond this year at the bedside, in clinical support roles and behind the scenes.
I would also like to thank the members of our Leadership Team for their work over the past year. Each of these leaders has given of themselves to ensure that our patients and residents are well cared for and that our staff have the tools, equipment, support and mentorship they need - not just to excel at work but to feel safe at work. In particular, I’d like to recognize Dawn Shorten on her retirement as Integrated Director of Occupational Health & Safety and Infection Prevention and Control, to welcome Cheryl Bourgeau who has taken over Dawn’s role, and to congratulate Breanne Lapointe who was promoted to Deputy Chief of Lanark County Paramedic Service, Angela MacLean who was promoted to Integrated Human Resources Manager and Lauren Varley who was promoted to Controller during the past year.
Our Senior Team has also worked hard this past year and has grappled with some very difficult issues. Thanks to Kimberley Harbord for her outstanding leadership as our Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, her ingenuity at finding PPE when nobody else could, and her persistence in ensuring that our many new Ministry submissions were completed accurately and on time.
In addition to his work leading operating departments, Randy Shaw has once again managed numerous Hospital Infrastructure Renewal Fund Projects and has led much of the CT scan application work. He has also played a key role in the arrangements for our various COVID activities with Public Health and worked with the Town on logistics for moving the vaccination clinic to a much needed larger space at the arena.
Our new Chief of Staff, Graeme McKillop, very quickly became a full-on member of the Senior Team when he took over from Chris Deschenes in July. He is a terrific partner for me in our complementary roles, whose perspective and advice I value.
Last but by no means least, I am grateful that Jason Hann agreed to join us as our Integrated Vice President Patient & Resident Services and Chief Nursing Executive last October. He brings perspectives from multiple hospitals in Ottawa and the GTA, as well as an appreciation for small communities, and a great local network. His wisdom and guidance have already benefitted the hospitals and Fairview Manor in so many ways.
We in the Senior Team cannot do what we do without excellent support. In addition to appreciating the skill and commitment our assistants bring to their work every day, we are thankful for their willingness to assume Integrated roles. Thank you to Angie Kelly and Cindy Skebo for everything they have done this year to support the Vice Presidents and Board Committees and for all of the extra things they both do to support our organizations.
Thank you Tina for everything you do. You keep both Boards, both Chiefs of Staff, both Medical Staffs and me running efficiently, in the right place at the right time – all the while anticipating our next need or request and acting as Staff Association President.
Thank you to the members of our community who make up the Board of Directors for your engagement, input and participation over the past year. We are indeed fortunate to have such a wise and committed group of people leading the charge.
Mary Wilson Trider
Notes for remarks by Mr. Lyman Gardiner, Almonte General Hospital Board Finance Committee Chair - June 28, 2021
As Chair of the Finance and Audit Committee, it is my pleasure to present the audited financial statements for the Almonte General Hospital which represent the results of operations for the year ended March 31, 2021, as well as the financial position for organization at that date. The results of the operations include the Hospital, Fairview Manor, and Lanark County Paramedic Services. This has been a year like no other with the global pandemic and the fight against COVID-19.
INDEPENDENT AUDITOR'S REPORT
You may note that the independent auditor’s report presents their opinion that the financial statements present fairly, in all material respects, the financial position of Almonte General Hospital as at March 31, 2021; and the results of its operations, changes in net assets, cash flows, and re-measurement gains and losses for the year then ended are reported in accordance with Canadian public sector accounting standards.
STATEMENT OF FINANCIAL POSITION
The Working Capital Ratio, representing Current Assets/Current Liabilities, increased from .53 as at March 31, 2020 to .93 on March 31, 2021. Ongoing efforts to increase hospital surplus operations and limiting capital investment, Ministry of Health Funding were a focus to improve future cash flows.
We are pleased to report that we continue to invest in ongoing capital projects. Working together with the Ontario Ministry of Health and its Health Infrastructure Renewal Fund allowed AGH to invest approximately $872,000 in infrastructure projects.
Also, we wish to thank the Foundation for its very generous support of the equipment purchases of $224,00 last year including: tornado flusher, cardiac monitor, smart pumps and to help support COVID 19, a portable ventilator, lobby furniture and shields were purchased. In addition, The Foundation also contributed $85,000 to warranty expenses related to the Ultrasound and X-ray Department.
The Hospital finished the year with $1,932,000 in net assets.
STATEMENT OF OPERATIONS
Results of Operations were a surplus of $512,000 compared to a surplus of $209,000 in the previous year, an improvement indicative of the effectiveness of efforts across the organization. This is a surplus we require to meet out debt commitments and other expenditures such as technology upgrades in the upcoming year.
We will strive to continue to provide quality services while seeking opportunities to increase efficiencies and generate opportunities for increased revenues.
In closing, I would like to thank the members of the Board Finance and Audit Committee for their good work and due diligence during the last year.
As mentioned at the outset, this was a year like no other with respect to Hospital and LTC financial reporting and accountability.
AGH has an exceptionally strong finance team. With Kimberley Harbord as CFO and Lauren Varley, Controller leading the accounting team, this group exhibited tremendous innovation and resilience during the past year as the pandemic upended hospital operations and finances. This was not a “same as last year” fiscal year. Pandemic responses included changes in operations, staffing, equipment purchases and supplies. Communications with funders was critical as was accurate and timely reporting of pandemic related expenditures and reconciliations to approved funding. All this occurred without any reduction in other reporting compliance or control procedures.
This team deserves our recognition and thanks for an excellent job.
I now will request two motions:
The approval of the audited financial statements for the year ended March 31, 2021 as presented.
The appointment of KPMG as the auditors for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2022.
Thank you very much.
Chair, Finance and Audit Committee
Download the 2021 Report to the Community