Junior Fair BBQ again a big success Beulah B James Senior Profile: Josie Myers Lady Indians place second at Ohio Classic in Hillsboro MVCA dominates Greyhounds in 45-0 triumph For Lady Devils, SHAC streak goes to 55 matches 9/11: Sixteen years later Gertrude Gibson Defender Bowl coming Sept. 16 Joyce A Walker Virginia R Young Senior Profile: Abby Campton West Union hosts 2017 Dragon Run New gridiron history begins for Peebles Trout, fire, and blueberry fields forever Senior Profile: Baylee Justice Lady Devils win SHAC thriller at Eastern Brown From Blue Creek to the Beaneaters Tough loss for Greyhounds in season opener Turning tragedy into hope What we learn from failure Absolutely had to get the wrinkles out Frances S Kidder Leo Trotter 41st Bentonville Festival set to begin Sept. 8 Winchester celebrates its history during three-day street fair Cruisefest returning to streets of Peebles Blue Creek- a community in transition honors its history and heritage Cuteness Galore – Winchester Homecoming Festival Baby Show Ronnie L Day Cast your vote for the Adams County Fairgrounds Nelson E Atkinson Ryan L Colvin Richard Tackett William L Tadlock Penny Pollard Wendell Beasley West Union soccer drops pair at Mason County Lady Indians go down in straight sets Senior Profile: Michael Gill Senior Profile: Katie Sandlin Royals dominate in big win over North Adams Dragons continue County Cup domination Archaeology Day returns to Serpent Mound Hourglass Quilt Square is back up again Manchester family hosts International Guests History, farming, and family- the bedrock of Cherry Fork’s community Bus drivers, emergency responders prepare for coming school year Working up a real good sweat What’s behind the motive? Rondal R Bailey Jr Thelma J Yates She’s all grown up now Scott A Yeager Soccer talent on display at 2017 SHAC preview Baseball community mourns the loss of Gene Bennett Winchester Homecoming Festival is Aug 25-27 Eleanor P Tumbleson Felicity man killed in Ohio River boating accident WUHS golfers take Portsmouth Invitational It was pretty cold that day Volleyball kicks off with SHAC Preview Night Young awarded Women’s Western Golf Foundation Scholarship One Mistake Senator Portman visits GE Test Facility in Peebles Adams County school districts facing some major challenges for the coming year Family, friends, and roots: the ties that bind residents of one Adams County village What is your strength? Just the chance to take a look back Ronnie L Wolford Dale J Marshall Herbert Purvis Great American Solar Eclipse coming Aug. 21 BREAKING NEWS: West Union wins fifth consecutive County Cup Wallace B Boden John L Fletcher Lady Indians golfers learning the links North Adams, West Union golfers open 2017 seasons This Labor Day, ‘Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over’ Blanton announces candicacy for Court of Appeals Local student attends Congress of Future Medical Leaders MHS welcomes new principal Made in America When it feels like you’re spinning plates Bonfires and “building” a farm Lady Devils looking to take that next step 50 years of Bengal memories Ag Society delivers donation to Dragonfly Foundation Young Memorial Scholarship awarded to a pair of local seniors ‘Musical passion is in his blood’ Naylor named NAHS Principal Boldman retiring after 17 years as Homeless Shelter director Manchester concludes another River Days celebration Drug Treatment vs. Prison James R Brown Bobby Lawler Jr Adams County man charged with killing estranged girlfriend Lexie N Hopkins Volleyball, soccer previews coming this weekend Michael A Cheek

Under new management county hospital is thriving against all odds

Bill May, CEO of the Adams County Regional Medical Center, has helped to put the hospital in a financial situation that is not common in rural hospitals.

While prognosis is grim for most rural hospitals, ACRMC is being transformed into a model of success – 

Story and photo by Patricia Beech –

Healthcare at the Adams County Regional Medical Center (ACRMC) has expanded so rapidly in the past few years local residents no longer need to travel to nearby cities to receive quality treatment.
Three years ago the facility was in the red and many feared it was on the same slippery economic slope as so many other small rural hospitals across the country that were forced to close their doors.
So, how is the hospital adapting to Adams County’s rural needs, and how will it continue to meet the increasing demand for services?
Ask CEO Bill May.
May, who has been operationally responsible for ACRMC since 2014, assumed the CEO’s seat in 2016 to simultaneously oversee the refinancing of the hospital’s bonds and its transition from a county facility to a 501C3 nonprofit corporation.
With a career beginning 50 years ago, May worked his way up through the medical ranks – first as an orderly, then as a respiratory therapist, and later as a physician’s assistant before moving into administration.
Today, he sits behind a wide desk covered with stacks of papers, files, and folders. “My world as a CEO,” he says pointing at his desk, “is always in a state of flux because there’s always a lot going on. I tell people I work in a gray area, not black and white, there’s always something you have to deal with that takes a while to work itself through –medical staff issues, or board issues, or legal team issues – and while that’s going on it’s still business as usual here in the hospital.”
May’s parent company, Rural Hospital Group (RHG), manages both public and private critical access hospitals in rural areas across 10 states. The company has gained a reputation for managing cost efficient hospitals that offer quality healthcare. They also recruit and retain physicians while keeping costs down for community members.
“We were called in to take a look at Adams County’s hospital over 2 ½ years ago,” says May. “I brought a team of folks in and we spent some time looking at everything from A to Z – from the type of boilers to the number of employees, it was a very thorough evaluation.”
After reporting their findings to the hospital board, RHG was asked to assume management of the facility.
May, who headed up the RHG team, says one of his main concerns was the number and types of doctors employed by the hospital.
” We found a good group of physicians here, but what I wanted to do was look at the number of specialists we have in the hospital,” he says. “The goal of any small hospital should be to try and keep as many doctors local as you can so that people won’t have to drive to Cincinnati for what we call routine care.”
In the past two months he has brought on another urologist, an ophthalmologist, a pain management interventionist, and is currently looking at bringing a dermatologist on board. In addition, both Christ Hospital and the University of Cincinnati have set up Tele-medicine units in the hospital which allow doctors to see patients without either having to make a four-hour round trip.
Emphasizing the importance of team work, May heaps praise on the managers who work under him.
“When RHG came in the hospital wasn’t doing as well as it could have been. We were asked to evaluate what it would take to “turn the ship and get it back in the channel.  I’ll tell you candidly, it’s not something a CEO can do alone.  To run a hospital smoothly you’ve got to have a great team working with you. Some CEO’s may think they can do it all, but they can’t because there are too many people you have to answer to, you have so many constituents: the community which you want to provide quality care to, a medical staff that works with you on a daily basis, a board of trustees that you have to work with and be responsible to, and all of your employees – we have 220, and I have to be visible and answerable to all of them,” he says. “I’ve been in this role for many years and I can say unequivocally that the ACRMC management team is the best I’ve ever worked with.”
Most of his career has been spent in small hospitals and May says he prefers the dynamic of working in smaller facilities where employees are familiar with one another.
“I like having the ability to leave my office and walk around and physically see what’s going on everyday.  You can’t do that in a big hospital – you have so much going on that you have to remain in your office most of the time,” he said. “I like being able to know our employees’ names and know what’s going on in their departments. I visit our emergency room a couple times a day, if for nothing more than to say hi, or to bring them a bag of candy.”
May points to the hospital’s emergency room service as an example of the high quality healthcare the facility offers.
“Again, I think that one of our major strengths here, beyond the employees who are superb, is that we have good doctors, we have a beautiful facility, and a great emergency room which I would put up against any,” he adds. “It has 16 patient rooms and is very well equipped with life-saving equipment including an on-site MRI which is unusual for a small hospital.”
Instituting an aggressive marketing campaign, May is determined to get the word out about the upgrades and improvements that have been put in place at the hospital.
“We’re doing more advertising on billboards and in newspapers, and we’re more active in the local community telling people what it is we’re doing here,” says May.  “A direct result of that is an increase in the number of patients coming into the hospital.  We have 25 beds on the third floor, and on average we have 17-22 patients a day up there, as well as a record number of patients coming through our outpatient services.”
More patients means that the hospital’s once sinking bottom line is moving out of the red and into the black.
“We’ve been financially strong for the past eight months in a row, and we’ve had a positive bottom line for the past eight months in a row – which is very strong,” he said. “Typically, when you come in to try and resurrect or move a hospital from where it is to a new track, it’s a little more difficult than this one has been because ACRMC has plenty of population, and the employees are dedicated to having this hospital here forever.”

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