Board of Health

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Board of Health - May 28, 2020 Minutes

Regular Meeting: Friday, May 28, 2020

Opening: Noon, Virtual Meeting, Robin Nelson called the meeting to order and Chelsey joined later and chaired the meeting

Present: Mike Thorstad, Kayla Nelson, Rick Steen, Robin Nelson, Lyn Telford, Chelsey Matter, John Strand, Amy LaValla

Others Present: Desi Fleming, Melissa Perala, Lori Sall

Absent: John Strand

Approval of Minutes:

Announcements: Covid-19 update at the end for today, Desi Fleming.

Budget: Melissa Perala reviewed revenue and expense numbers, Cass County and jail numbers. These numbers aren’t firm because they don’t need them until the end of July. For some federal grants, we won’t know until July 1 if we will receive the funds. The Family Planning grant received an increase because of a decrease in funding for Planned Parenthood. Decreasing our HIV revenue based on what we are providing. Immunizations is a historical increase. Increase in Ryan White funding. WIC received an increase. Emergency Preparedness grants, we did not know so we only put in January through June. Potentially an $80,000 increase to that line item. MCH grant dropped down to $120,000, which was expected. A lot of the opioid funding was one-time funding. State grants, such as active TB fluctuate because we get paid based on activity level (# of cases). Substance abuse prevention grant, we only get reimbursed when we can do certain activities and when we can’t we do not get reimbursed. The tobacco Settlement grant is increasing. United Way funding for NFP is a decrease. Gladys Ray Shelter, VA contract is no longer a part of our budget. DHS is funding MOP so we are not getting funds from Essentia or Sanford. Self-pay, family planning will be increasing. Colposcopy service that usage has been down. Server training has been increasing. Cass County we are not increasing except for salary. Environmental increased based on history. Revenue is slightly done, but if we get the CRI grant we will only be about $10,000 down. We had $50,000 earmarked opioid and syringe services and it disappeared from our budget for a year. We are formally requesting that it comes back into our line item medical supplies. It is for supplies. John Strand has volunteered to clear a path for that funding to be put back into FCPH’s budget. Expense: It is a conglomeration of all our different divisions. Salary and benefits are blank because the City of Fargo decides that. Interpreters costs going down. Reference lab is slight increase. The Health officer is a contractual increase. There was a small decrease in computer costs because of changing employee health software. Marketing increase and contractual costs increase are due to the tobacco grant. Mowing services increased by $7,000. Increase in other services, like taxi rides for homeless going to shelters. Building repairs going up due to Gladys Ray building. Building rent, rental for some space to use for tobacco grant for seminars. Decreases in printing costs and mileage. Decrease in some in and out of state travel. Dues and membership increase because of new Gladys Ray shelter software. The pharmacy has a $3,000 increase and lab supplies increased because of new client load. Food is an increase for Gladys Ray shelter food cost.

Desi: we were funded by the state to get contact tracers, we have some wrap-around support, also possibly local public health costs, that would all be outside of our budgeting. Melissa Perala: money for the task force and local public health will not show up in the budget. Depending on funding service we have to use some grant money first before COVID-19 funding. Cass County and jail budgeting, we put in some increases, those are direct costs. They may also want an increase in staff time at the jail as well.
John Strand mentioned keeping up the help on people who are addicted to meth. Desi Fleming assured that we have never closed syringe services or any of our services for addiction but we have not been doing as much marketing on it since we are working on COVID-19.

COVID Update: We opened our Department of Operations on March 17 for COVID-19. We still had essential services being provided for clients. We have been cautious opening; we screen clients, we have masks available if clients need them. We have been doing a lot of FIT testing for N-95 masks. We do a lot of train the trainer for this, as well. We have been using Everbridge (mass notification system) with the long term care staff, residents and families. We have interns working here assisting with the efforts. Dr. Lako has been providing the medical provider name for the standing order so all the results come back to our facility to be called out. We have a contact tracing team and nursing also assists. Contact tracing team is comprised of 34 staff working 7 days a week 12 hours a day. We are following 600 positive cases and 1200 close contacts. Environmental staff is helping business mitigate if they have a positive case in their facility. Social media, health briefings and now the new Red River Valley COVID-19 Task Force have kept staff very busy. The task force is comprised of 13 partners, the Mayor and Desi chair the task force but it is metro focused. We are looking for targeted testing. Our numbers are going up, which was our goal, we want to find the cases and educate and quarantine them. We have education awareness component. Working on support for people who are having financial or living situation issues. A webpage for the task force is also now available. The communications team is answering the questions people have. Homeless housing is occurring at a hotel in town and our shelter staff is managing those sites. Staff here are working very hard for many hours. We are getting support from National Guard to build our testing matrix and we have three static sites and we have a mobile team that can go out and test. Some of these are serial testing groups. Our biggest goal is to keep it out of long term care and community living buildings and protect our most vulnerable. Lyn Telford asked about language barriers in education regarding COVID-19. Nicole Crutchfield and LSS on our task force has been working on this not only by talking to community leaders but working on translations. Telehealth use was discussed and being creative in ways that we can connect and deliver services. FCPH Family Planning has been using telehealth for the last year, our NP’s have been employing it. It is a good option to see people and talk and there is place for it going forward.
John Strand: Expressed gratitude to Desi and her team for the sacrifices that have been made to work in this pandemic. Desi reiterated that she is also proud of her team. We have been told to prepare for a vaccine at the end of this year or the beginning of 2021, then it will be distributing and giving out shots. We are really hoping everyone gets their flu shots so we don’t have a bad flu year on top of COVID-19.
This is Mike Thorstad’s last Board of Health meeting. John Strand thanked Mike Thorstad for his public service serving on the board.

Meeting adjourned: Motion by Chelsey Matter, approved by Rick Steen, seconded by Robin Nelson

Next Meeting: August 14, 2020