GARBERVILLE >> There was a special meeting of the Southern Humboldt Community Healthcare District board of directors on Wednesday, Oct. 1, to pass a resolution fixing the district contribution to employees’ health care benefits and renew contracts for two clinical lab scientists.

Board members present were David Ordonez, Gary Wellborn, Corinne Stromstad and Barbara Truitt. District administrative assistant Constance Paul was also at the meeting. Administrator Harry Jasper was not present.

There is a vacant seat on the board. Truitt said she had hoped that some people considering applying for the open board seat would be at the meeting, but no members of the public were there. The board planned a special meeting for Wednesday, Oct. 22 when they will determine whether they have a recommendation of a prospective board member for the elections office. The deadline for their recommendation is Oct. 27. If by Oct. 22, the board has no recommendation, the elections office will notify the county board of supervisors.

The previous week the board had learned that insurance costs for employee health care is going up again in January 2015 (see Redwood Times, Sept. 30).

The board continued their discussion from the previous week about the increase in insurance costs for employees.

They passed the resolution to increase the distict’s contribution to $546.35 per month to the insurance companies for the employees’ health insurance.

But the board decided to ask Jasper to have staff check the contributions that other hospitals make to their employee health care benefits. They agreed they would like to be more prepared with information if there is another insurance rate increase next year.

Also on the agenda was renewal of contracts with Healthcare Connections Incorporated (HCI) for two clinical lab scientists, Joseph Dingfelder and Lynne Houston. Both have been contracting with the district and this agreement is a 13-week renewal of contract work, from Oct. 6 to Jan. 2. Paul reported that there is a candidate being interviewed for the permanent lab scientist position. Truitt said the HCI contracts can be cancelled if the district hires the candidate.

The next regular SHCHD board meeting is on Oct. 30 in the Dimmick Conference Room, 733 Cedar Street in Garberville.

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