TO All staff; Board of Directors
FROM Derald Walker, Chief Executive Officer
DATE July 10, 2008
SUBJECT Latest news
I have heard from many of you in response to the Oregonian article. I appreciate all the questions, concerns and frustrations you are experiencing. I will focus today on the one point that is likely the biggest question on your mind from the article which is… will Cascadia remain open after July
Despite what you are reading and hearing, I believe – and have support from our community partners – that the answer is yes, as long as we implement the changes and the downsizing that I have outlined in previous communications; and as long as we redouble our efforts to increase our revenue in our fee for service programs.
Despite what you are reading and hearing, payday is coming up and paychecks will be distributed according to our standard process. Our efforts in the next several weeks are critical to our survival, and I need and appreciate your continuing help in this.
I am very concerned about the serious downturn in our clinical productivity data. I realize this can be attributed to a number of recent factors, but despite this difficult time, we MUST increase our productivity immediately. The recent reopening of our Mental Health intakes will help, but what is really needed is a concerted effort on your part to manage your clinical schedules to their fullest capacity.
In addition our senior leadership and directors have been working to transition and close programs over the past month. Washington County, Bridgeview, TAY, MIOS, and TNP have all been completed. We have to continue with our downsizing as swiftly as possible.
Lifeworks continues to be in negotiation with regard to transitioning the Gresham building, consumers, and any staff who apply for and are offered positions with the new provider.
Final decisions for the Garlington building and programs will be made very soon.
Negotiations continue in Marion County for possible transfer of services.
In addition to clinical program changes, reductions in our workforce will also be felt in our administrative services as we will require less support for our programs as we get smaller.
The HR team is very actively working with Directors to redesign our employee benefits package as a way to effect cost savings. Please note that there is no plan to reduce our health insurance coverage benefit, although we are looking at a number of other ways to reduce costs while supporting our workforce.
Our residential programs that have specific contracts which outline and require certain staff numbers (including PSRB, ECMU, RITS and Turning Point) will likely not change much, aside from the changes that affect the whole agency. The same can be said for other services, including money management, and all services at Plaza and at Woodland Park.
Finally, you may already know that Chip Burczak, our Chief Financial Officer is leaving the company. I have confidence in the financial infrastructure that he has so ably built, and know that the team of talented people he has helped to assemble are up to the task of moving on to the next steps. Please see the attached news release for more on this.
In previous Executive Updates I’ve sent to you I’ve consistently tried to represent my strong sense of hope, and recent developments may present a contradiction for you. These past months have been confusing and at times disappointing for me as well.
Yet, even at some of our most discouraging moments, I’ve remained determined that Cascadia will recover from this crisis and reach a time of stability. I remain very positive today. The outpouring of support I continue to receive from many key Oregon stakeholders and organizations has only increased over time. This includes many gestures today.
As I’ve said before, I admire every member of our workforce, and our consumers and friends in the community, who continue to hang in there with us. This represents a powerful force in insuring continuity of services for consumers of community mental health in Oregon.