SPECIAL PRESENTATION BY CARLOS MIGOYA, JACKSON HEALTH SYSTEM’S PRESIDENT AND CEO RE: GOB BALLOT QUESTION
Audrey M. Edmonson, Prime Sponsor
Health & Social Services Committee
Mr. Carlos Migoya, President and CEO of the Jackson Health System, thanked Chairwoman Edmonson for the opportunity to make a brief presentation about the ballot question asking the voters to invest in the future of Jackson. He stated that at her request the Administration of Jackson Hospital held a series of town hall meetings to share this information and more than 200 residents attended. He announced that one or two additional meetings would be held to reach those neighborhoods that had not yet been scheduled. He indicated that the handout that was distributed to the commissioners had been shared at the meetings. Mr. Migoya said that it had been almost two years since the Board of County Commissioners (BCC) had taken decisive action to secure the future of the Jackson Health System and its mission to deliver world-class care to Miami-Dade residents. He noted in the interim, Jackson had accomplished some critical goals: it was now well above the national average in almost every industry measure of clinical quality; it went from losing $80-90 million per year to earning an $8 million surplus in 2012, and a projected $35 million in the fiscal year ending on September 30, 2013. Mr. Migoya announced that this summer Jackson regained its ranking from US News and World Report as the number one hospital in the Miami-Fort Lauderdale area.
Mr. Migoya stressed that Jackson was stronger by every measure today. However, he noted, for everything that had been accomplished, Jackson’s mission may be in jeopardy. He indicated that the gap between Jackson’s public funding and the cost of its mission was creating a huge deficit in its budget. He stated that this gap, which represented $72 million in 2011, had nearly doubled to more than $139 million in 2013. Mr. Migoya noted, in view of this situation, Jackson’s Administration could walk away from its original mission to provide quality health care regardless of the patients’ ability to pay or could seek to fill this gap with an endless supply of tax dollars; however, both options were unacceptable. He pointed out that Jackson did not need to prop itself up on a new operating subsidy, noting the taxpayer owners needed to identify opportunities in the market and make the necessary investments for the hospital to thrive. He stated that this was the essence of the question that would be posed to the voters in November. He assured the commissioners that no Jackson funds were being spent on this campaign, which was entirely financed by civic leaders who believed that this was the right way to move forward for the Miami-Dade community.
Mr. Migoya noted during this public discussion in the fall, a number of signature projects would be highlighted, including the network of Urgent Care Centers. He explained that a number of people wanted to access Jackson’s excellent health care, but did not have the time to drive to one of the system’s hospitals. He noted these new out-patient centers would offer Jackson’s level of excellence at a lower cost and would not take patients away from existing service providers. He indicated that Jackson was committed to being nimble and leveraging partnerships. Mr. Migoya noted another signature project was the Children’s Ambulatory Center, which would bring some of the most sought-after pediatric services into child-friendly settings. He explained that this would be an off-campus center that would combine pediatric urgent care, diagnostics, radiology, and other specialized services, and that would bring higher levels of services into the community, thereby eliminating time-consuming trips to the Jackson Memorial Campus. He indicated that this center could be supplemented with a new pediatric facility attached to Jackson’s existing children’s hospital, noting a modest addition to the existing children’s hospital would greatly enhance the hospital’s same-day services while also creating a dedicated pediatric entrance. Mr. Migoya stressed that the opportunities were huge to provide better service and attract more patients. He stated that another signature project involved building a state-of-the-art physical rehabilitation hospital combining Jackson’s clinical care, with the cutting-edge research being conducted at the University of Miami to cure paralysis. He noted this would become an international destination for orthopedic and neurological rehabilitation.
Mr. Migoya stressed the importance, in addition to these projects, to invest in bringing Jackson’s facilities up to industry standards, as outdated facilities made it hard to attract patients, no matter how excellent the service. He noted they also planned to invest in new medical equipment to treat heart attacks, strokes and cancer, as well as carrying out Information and Technology upgrades to meet new regulatory standards. He pointed out that the purpose of these improvements was to empower Jackson to thrive in the future, control its destiny, compete in the marketplace, and rise or fall on its own merits. He concluded his remarks by saying that over the hundred years since Jackson opened, the residents of Miami-Dade had invested to create a unique community treasure, a brick and mortar promise that when the residents were most vulnerable, Miami took care of its own.
Chairwoman Edmonson asked for the kick-off date of the campaign.
Mr. Migoya indicated that no date had as of yet been set; it would most likely be during the middle of September; and a date should be announced later during the week.
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