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Myrah Keating Smith Health Center Honors Staff's Achievements

May 10, 2007 — There were smiles by the mile Thursday as the staff at Myrah Keating Smith Community Health Center on St. John celebrated National Hospital and Nurses Week.
Myrah Keating Administrator Harold Wallace announced that Morvel Vanterpool was voted employee of the year by the center's employees.
"She exemplifies what Myrah Keating is all about," Schneider Regional Medical Center COO Amos Carty Jr. said after the ceremony.
Wallace said that Vanterpool, who works as a cashier, went the extra mile when there was a staff shortage in the business office.
The event also included the presentation of certificates to employees.
Wallace said in his opening remarks that Myrah Keating's affiliation with Schneider enables the health center to stay open.
"We don't get the revenues here to function on our own," Wallace said.
Later, Schneider CFO Peter Najawicz said that Myrah Keating operates with a deficit of about $1 million a year.
He said the actual shortfall is $3 million, but the local government funds $2 million of the loss.
Wallace said that Myrah Keating revenues are about $650,000 a year.
And he said that 28 percent of the patients don't pay their bills, 53 percent pay their own bills and the rest have their bills paid by insurance companies.
"There is an enormous uncompensated care level," Wallace said.
Schneider CEO Rodney Miller Sr. called Myrah Keating one of the best community health centers in the nation. "This is a small critical-access hospital," he said.
Wallace said that of all three Schneider facilities, Myrah Keating gets the highest marks from patients.
Miller, who's been on the job for five years, said those years have been difficult as he and other Schneider employees struggled to move the facilities onto firmer footing.
"There were times I didn't think I'd see five years, but I guarantee I won't see another five," he said.
He said after the ceremony he has no immediate plans to leave his post.
The day also included a community meet and greet with tours of the facility.
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