SIX MONTH YEAR TO DATE UPDATE: First Year of ACW Payments Met Due to Cost Control Measures and Accreditation Maintained

Bermuda Hospitals Board today releases information about its performance for the fiscal year to date, including six month unaudited financial details. Highlights include:

• Accreditation has been maintained, following an on-site survey into patient safety standards across BHB by Accreditation Canada and the report made public on the BHB website. These are the same standards that are used to accredit Canadian hospitals.
• Modernization Project successes have seen quality and efficiency improvements
o Stroke care improvements have seen length of stay for stroke patients move from 15 down to 12 days, as patients get better and go home sooner (figures compare April 2015 when the project started to July 2015). This compares to 28 and 27 days in April 2014 and July 2014 before the move to the new Acute Care Wing (ACW).
o Satisfaction with Emergency Wait Times has risen from 64% to 80% in six months through new processes and improved communication.
o Five new onsite lab tests previously only carried out overseas has meant people get results faster, and revenue that previously went overseas stays in Bermuda.
• Savings initiatives over the last three years have enabled BHB to absorb the payments for the new Acute Care Wing.

“BHB employees are working hard to maintain high quality care in very challenging times,” BHB Chairman, Peter Everson, comments. “Cost savings activities over the last few years have enabled us to absorb the annual service payments for the new Acute Care Wing. In September 2015 – one year after we opened the new wing – we had met all our financial obligations. Payments had started in June 2014 after substantial completion. With reference to the Six Month Year to Date financials in this release, the six months to 30 September 2015 includes the service payments for the Acute Care Wing from 1 April 2015 to 30 September of $13.2 million, and the six months to 30 September 2014 includes service payments for the Acute Care Wing from 14 June 2014 (substantial completion) to 30 September 2014 of $8.1 million. Some of the savings BHB has made to meet its obligations are recurring, such as three years of budget cuts and the senior management restructure last year. Following on from the management restructure, the IT Department has also restructured and four positions were made redundant in November, further streamlining our workforce around BHB needs. Other savings are not sustainable. Our employees have not had a cost of living increase in recent years and repairs and maintenance – where it has been safe to do so – have been put off. This cannot continue indefinitely so work continues to implement recurrent savings that either enhance quality, or at a minimum do not impact quality of care.

“We recognise that healthcare costs in Bermuda are already too high and so the pressure is to find savings through efficiencies, repatriating overseas care, and better ways of working. Indeed, BHB recognises that public health has to be improved in order for the country to experience an affordable healthcare service and we look forward to participating in this process.”

Attachment 1: Six Month YTD Financials

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