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BBGH Board of Trustees Approves Funds for Childcare Center

The Box Butte General Hospital (BBGH) Board of Trustees (Board) meeting was called to order at 12:00 p.m. Monday, January 30, 2023 in the Alliance Room at BBGH. The month’s agenda included a discussion around the development of the childcare center, approval for the 2023-24 academic scholarships, and a quality management update. The consent calendar, January financial report, and credentialing requests were all approved as presented.

Chief Operations Officer Jim Bargen gave a brief update on the electronic health record system transition. The team continues to build essential functions into the system. The original go-live date of February 6th was postponed. A new go-live date will be released in the upcoming weeks. The postponement was to ensure a smooth rollout of the new system.

Chief Executive Officer Lori Mazanec briefly updated the Board on quality management and safety. Influenza, RSV, and COVID-19 cases are drastically down across the state. The annual HIPPA education training will be taking place next month.  

The Board approved the 2023 - 2024 academic scholarship proposal made by Chief Nursing Officer Jordan Colwell. Colwell expressed an increased interest by college students enrolled in a healthcare career. There will be 10 academic scholarships offered by BBGH, five high school and five college scholarships each amounting to $1,500. This is in addition to the five college scholarships offered through the Box Butte Health Foundation. The application period will be open from February 13 – March 13. More information will be posted to the hospital website under the Education/Scholarship Opportunities link.

In new business, Chief Executive Officer Lori Mazanec presented a financial proposal to the Board requesting funds for the renovation of BBGH’s Kiddie Kampus, which will be the location of a new childcare center. Mazanec shared, “Currently, we have a handful of employees that were not be able to return following maternity leave because childcare was not available for their infants. This only compounds the workforce shortage issue before us.” BBGH and Lighthouse Christian Daycare applied for a grant through the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) and was awarded $200,000 as part of the Nebraska Children and Families Foundation’s Communities for Kids initiative. The award allows for an increase of 28 child care slots for children ages 0-5 by June 30, 2024.

Shannon Alwin, owner and operator of Lighthouse Christian Daycare shared, “I am pleased to have been awarded the grant from the Nebraska Children and Families Foundation. Through a collaboration with Box Butte General Hospital (BBGH), we will be renovating a building on the hospital’s campus, formerly Kiddie Kampus. Our goal is to have the expanded license, open and accepting children beginning July 2023. I am excited to work with BBGH to provide care for more children throughout our community. I have 14 years of experience in Nebraska as a family child care provider and welcome this next step in my career as I leave my home environment and embrace the adventures of a center.”

BBGH CEO, Lori Mazanec, expanded, “Box Butte General Hospital has been exploring options for adding a childcare center to help combat the healthcare workforce shortage, so the opportunity to collaborate with Shannon and Lighthouse Christian Daycare along with the grant award was impeccable timing. The funds will allow for a fast track to expand childcare options for our team, and a much-needed service within Box Butte County. By adding childcare services to our organization provides another rung for recruitment of essential healthcare workers and expands employment opportunities at BBGH. The Board unanimously approved the addition of funds needed to complete the renovation.  Additional details on the childcare center opening will be released this spring, with employment opportunities to launch in the coming weeks.

New BBGH employees include: Hannah Bailey, RN, Staff Nurse, Danica Breen, LPN, Staff Nurse, Coleen Morrison, LPN, Staff Nurse, and Delora Walks Out, Patient Registration Clerk. Also recognized was January Employee of the Month, Katherine Hunzeker, Computer Educator.  

The next BBGH regular board meeting is Monday, February 27 at noon in the Alliance Room. The public is welcome to attend.

Box Butte General Hospital is an equal opportunity provider and employer.