Day: August 7, 2017

SCKMC trustees discuss financial stability, long-term goals at board retreat

The South Central Kansas Medical Center Board of Trustees held a “mini-retreat” on July 27 to begin re-evaluating the organization’s long-term strategic plan. The retreat was facilitated by Audrey Dunkel, senior director of financial advocacy for the Kansas Hospital Association, and lasted approximately three hours following a regular board meeting. The goal of the retreat was to identify SCKMC’s overall strengths and weaknesses, as well as opportunities and threats facing the medical center — both now and within the next several years. Through this discussion, five major topics were identified as “strategic areas” crucial for continued growth — financial stability, strategic growth, quality care and patient safety, culture and talent, and community relationships. The trustees discussed several ideas pertaining to each topic, such as: the hospital’s current payer mix, as it relates to financial stability; market share distribution and strategic growth; availability and access to primary care providers for quality care; competitive hurdles in regional recruitment of clinical and ancillary staff; building recruitment networks within local organizations to retain talent located in the community. “It really just dovetails into the Quorum (Health Resources) study,” said Virgil Watson, SCKMC’s chief executive officer. Quorum performed a “deep dive” into hospital finances and operations last summer, in an effort funded by the City of Arkansas City and authorized by the city’s Public Building Commission as part of the medical center’s bond requirements. “Everybody...

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Cowley College, Wichita State sign articulation agreements in engineering

MULVANE — Representatives from Cowley College and Wichita State University met Aug. 3 at the college’s Mulvane Center to sign official articulation agreements between the two institutions for five engineering programs. The programs to be included are computer engineering, computer science, electrical engineering, industrial engineering and manufacturing engineering. The agreements represent a true 2+2 arrangement between the two institutions and will allow a student to transfer seamlessly from Cowley College to Wichita State University. The purpose of the 2+2 agreements is to provide Cowley College’s students with a four-year coordinated program through the pre-engineering curriculum, where students will receive an associate of science degree at Cowley College in his or her first two years and a bachelor of science degree in computer science from Wichita State University after two additional years. “There is great value when you can help students move from career to classroom in a much more expedited time,” said Cowley College President Dennis Rittle. “This agreement will benefit thousands of students and their families by reducing the time to completion for their degree, which in turn reduces cost to the student.” These articulation agreements will serve to facilitate the academic transfer of students from Cowley College into one of five programs at Wichita State University by providing students with a clear and concise pathway of classes that will transfer seamlessly. With a clear pathway in place,...

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