HHCC will subcontract under Public Health with transition to county

By Grace King, Mt. Pleasant News


In keeping Healthy Henry County Communities as a nonprofit, the Board of Public Health will vote to sign a memorandum of understanding next month that they will employ a Healthy Henry County Communities Coordinator when Public Health becomes a county operation.

After sharing a 30-year agreement with the Henry County Health Center (HCHC), Public Health will transition to become a department under Henry County at the start of the new fiscal year on July 1, 2018. The decision was made by HCHC after it was no longer fiscally beneficial to be in contractual agreement with Public Health.

Although Healthy Henry County Communities (HHCC) has always been housed with Public Health within HCHC, the HHCC coordinator was employed by the hospital. With the division between HCHC and Public Health, the Board of Health needs to subcontract the HHCC coordinator.

Kelly Carr, who is currently the HHCC coordinator, will remain employed by the Board of Health as the HHCC coordinator under the county. There are no other employees directly under HHCC.

?The hospital has employed the staff to run HHCC,? Carr explained. ?So with this transition now, we?re kind of asking the Board of Health to take that over and employ that staff to run HHCC.?

Carr said that HHCC will continue to function with no change to the board. The only aspect that is changing within HHCC is who is employing the director.

With this subcontract, HHCC will remain a separate nonprofit. All programs through HHCC operate with grant funding, Carr said. For example, Family Connection is considered a program of HHCC, but they are employed through the Iowa State Extension Office.

?It?s just a process we are working through. It?s a natural fit, we?re just figuring it out,? Carr said.

The Board of Health will officially vote to transfer HHCC from the hospital to Public Health during their regular meeting on Jan. 7.