Pauls Valley, OK, Pauls Valley Democrat

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June 30, 2014

Good diagnosis for hospital

bporterfield@pvdemocrat.com — The diagnosis for a full recovery looks good right now as efforts are moving along to revive Pauls Valley’s hospital.

Right in the middle of it all is Bob Frost, who serves as the chief clinical officer for Pauls Valley General Hospital.

Frost’s comments to a group of Pauls Valley Kiwanis members show the hospital, faced with serious financial troubles in recent times, is moving in the right direction.

Relatively new to the local hospital but not to Pauls Valley having lived here since the late 1970s, Frost says his daily job is to focus on the services provided at PVGH.

Those services run the gamut, from the emergency room to the soon return of surgery to patients’ needs in general.

“The clinical services of the hospital are my responsibility; everything that has to do with the patient,” Frost said.

“It’s the clinical that we need to fix. Fix the clinical and make people comfortable with coming to the hospital and we’ll be OK.

“If we don’t take care of the people we won’t be in business.”

Frost starts his work day with a visit to the ER, talks with patients and has a constant focus on ways to improve services.

He adds the intensity has been taken up a notch to make those needed improvements with the emergency room at the top of the list.

“We better fix the emergency room — that’s the first thing I hear from a lot of people I talk to,” he said.

That goal has already included some “physician adjustments” to the ER.

“We’re finding physicians that we want. We want docs that can be here and help us with other projects.

“The expectations need to be raised and they’re doing it. The doctors are expected to run the ER and set the tone for the nurses. They’re holding people accountable.

“I try to keep a pulse on that every day.”

New nurses, some familiar to the PV hospital, have also been hired as enough employees are now there to get a regular rotation schedule going.

Also, in the past visitors to the ER were greeted by a clerk. Not anymore as a nurse will be there to get the patient assessments going faster.

“We’re trying to do a better job with triage,” Frost said.

He added the possibility of rolling the emergency room and E.M.S. ambulances under the same umbrella is being considered.

Plans are to start with an upgrading of ambulances and cardiac monitors in the hospital and ER.

“We have so many needs and the sales tax was so desperately needed. I applaud the community for seeing this.”

Frost added the home health service provided by the hospital is expected to close down this summer.

Staying in place is hospice, while surgery services should return at some point soon.

Also expected later this year, maybe August, the hospital will get a brand new electronic medical records system, which he says will pay for itself.

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