A common practice in the world of health care asset management may create a headache for Starke County government officials when and if they decide to part ways with IU Health. Interim Director Craig Felty told the council and commissioners it’s common for medical facilities to share equipment between sites.
“If we don’t have enough stretchers, we borrow stretchers or we lease stretchers, just for the time that we need them. We do that very frequently with bariatric beds. We do that frequently with a lot of equipment, stuff that we don’t need all the time. It’s very costly to have it in the building just in case we’ve got to have it once or twice a year,” Felty said.
Felty’s explanation of the process was in response to a question from commissioner Jennifer Davis. She recently spearheaded a series of health care discussions around the county and has since been fielding questions about why items like the anesthesia machine owned by the local hospital has been moved to LaPorte.
“We have arrangements set up with a lot of different health care providers, and we also do that between hospitals. It turns out to be a lot cheaper. Instead of LaPorte going out and spending half-a-million dollars for a new anesthesia machine, we had one they could borrow for a couple of days while they had one of theirs down. We may have to do that next week that’s going to save us half-a-million dollars on an anesthesia machine. Yes, it’s very commonly done in health care,” said Felty.
Felty provided the council and commissioners a complete inventory of assets and their depreciated value and told them he would be happy to answer any additional questions they may have after reviewing the lengthy list.