PeaceHealth to search for new WMC chief
The Borough Assembly has entered into an agreement with PeaceHealth of Ketchikan to focus on interim management of Wrangell Medical Center, and to assist the city in the selection and hiring of an administrator at the hospital.
Under the plan, Kendall Sawa, who is currently the Vice President of Patient Care Administration for PeaceHealth, would move from Ketchikan Medical Center to Wrangell to take the interim position while WMC searches for a new administrator.
Sawa, a native of Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada is a registered nurse and holds a Bachelors of Science in Health Care Administration. PeaceHealth’s website states he has 17 years experience in healthcare, and has been with KMC since 1997.
Interim administrator Olinda White is set to retire Dec. 31, but will take paid-time-off leave beginning on Sept. 14.
According to the agreement, the successful candidate for the administrator position will have to be approved by both the WMC Board and the Borough Assembly.
“The assembly and PeaceHealth calls for Final candidate(s) for the position of interim CBW (City and Borough of Wrangell) CEO shall be jointly selected by PeaceHealth and the WMC Board,” the agreement states. “The selected WMC CEO shall be employed by PeaceHealth subject to the appointment and ratification by WMC Board and approval by CBW.”
After hired, the initial term for the new administrator will be for one year beginning on the date the successful applicant is ratified by the Borough Assembly. The position may then be renewed after the first year by a follow-up agreement between PeaceHealth and the borough.
The assembly may also offer the administrator the position full-time as an employee of the borough after the one-year period is up – and would pay PeaceHealth a finder’s fee of 22 percent of the administrator’s salary, up to a maximum of $25,000.
The agreement sets a salary baseline for the new administrator at $180,000 annually, plus benefits at 30 percent of base pay, with additional, variable compensation of 20 percent of the base salary called for as well.
Former administrator Noel Rea was paid a salary of $185,169.27 under his final contract amendment.
Direct, non-compensation costs, including but not limited to travel and housing are also included in the package, with temporary housing payments of up to $1500 per month for six months.
Another cost in the agreement involves when the administrator of Ketchikan Medical Center is called upon by the Borough Manager to appear in Wrangell.
“When requested by CBW Borough Manager, the cost for attendance at CBW meetings by CEO Ketchikan Medical Center will be at an hourly rate of $140,” the agreement states.
PeaceHealth will also be on the hunt to find a replacement for White – though not a physical replacement.
“PeaceHealth will remotely provide the Financial Services and may also attend onsite meetings at CBW not to exceed two days per month,” the document states, before going into the compensation package. “Compensation for financial oversight of CBW Controller shall be calculated at an hourly rate of $103 per hour based on actual time spent.”
Borough Manager Tim Rooney was not available for comment by deadline for this story, and none of the WMC board members contacted would comment on the agreement.
The next regular meeting of the WMC board is set for Sept. 5 at 5:30 p.m. in the WMC conference room.