By Melinda Munson
The procedure to contact Dahl Memorial Clinic’s on duty provider has changed. The dedicated on duty provider line is no longer in service. Those seeking non-emergency care after hours should call Skagway Police Department Dispatch at 907-983-2232.
Dispatch will take down the patient’s number and reason for calling. The on duty provider will then contact the patient and provide instructions.
Those needing immediate, life saving care should call 911.
Dahl is open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and closed Saturday and Sunday.
After many months with the position unfilled, the clinic welcomed Interim Executive Director Thomas Steiner in late August. He will lead the clinic with a three-month contract, at a cost to the municipality of about $150,000, with the possibility to extend.
According to Este Fielding, clinic administrative manager, Steiner has a master’s degree in health science administration.
“Thomas has successfully led complex projects including quality of care and financial turnarounds for hospitals, rural health clinics and physician practices,” Fielding wrote in her introduction announcement. This is his first time living in Alaska.
As the clinic works with Steiner, who is contracted through COORS Leadership Capital, the municipality continues to negotiate a possible sale of the clinic business and lease of the building to Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC).
The clinic costs the municipality around $1 million per year. The discussion draft dated July 28 proposed SEARHC buy the clinic for $1 and lease the building for 25 years at $1 per year. As the clinic business has no monetary value, no community vote would be needed to approve a final contract although the contract would need to pass the assembly.
Municipal Code 16.03.060 (below) allows the borough to lease the clinic building for less than market value.
“The lease of any municipal lands may be made to any state or federal agency or political subdivision of the state or nonprofit organization for less than the appraised value, and for a consideration to be determined by the borough assembly to be in the best interests of the municipality.”
According to Borough Manager Brad Ryan, SEARHC representatives visited Dahl Clinic on Aug. 25 “to discuss terms of a lease agreement and sale agreement, and to provide SEARHC leadership an opportunity to further familiarize themselves with clinic operations.”
Ryan said he expected draft documents from SEARHC by Sept. 2, and after legal review, hopes to present them to the assembly Sept. 15.
Currently, there are no town halls to discuss the SEARHC negotiations. Interested parties can email letters to the assembly via the borough clerk at firstname.lastname@example.org.