Erlanger Health System lost $1.2 million in operating income — falling $1.9 million under budget — over the first quarter of fiscal year 2019. Despite the loss, the health system performed better than during the same period last year.
"Last year, at this point in time, we were at a $2.3 million loss. This year, we've virtually cut about $1.1 million off that loss," Erlanger CFO Britt Tabor said during a budget and finance committee meeting on Monday.
Some of the factors contributing to the missed budget were an increase in patient length of stay, fewer admissions than anticipated in several areas, and a network issue unrelated to the new electronic medical record software, EPIC.
"We as a health system have to continue to be more efficient to get that length of stay down," Tabor said, reminding management and board members that moving patients through the hospital more efficiently is an important step toward meeting expectations for the new fiscal year, which began in July.
As the year continues, Erlanger management hopes to expand its primary care footprint by leasing two separate medical office spaces — one to the north and one to the south of the downtown campus — for a total of about $3.2 million over the life of the lease. The full board voted Thursday in favor of the plan.
Details of the new locations will be released pending finalization of the leases. The new sites would bring the total number of Erlanger primary care practices up to 20, with the Soddy-Daisy location being the latest clinic to open its doors.
Contact staff writer Elizabeth Fite at firstname.lastname@example.org or 423-757-6673.