CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Although last month's polar vortex and chemical leak had a significant effect on Charleston Area Medical Center's revenue stream, officials expect to recoup losses by the end of the year.Larry Hudson, CAMC's chief financial officer, told hospital board members Wednesday the two events led to fewer inpatient and outpatient admissions, longer length of stay and, of course, reduced revenue."January was an unusual month, in case you didn't notice," Hudson said.He said the events caused a large budget shortfall for the month. The hospital's revenue was down $15 million in January, resulting in a $4.2 million operating loss for the month.
Looking at the big picture, Hudson said CAMC receives about $1 billion in revenue a year. He said although a $4 million monthly loss is significant, the hospital should recoup it by the end of the year.Earlier this month, hospital spokesman Dale Witte estimated the total loss caused by the Freedom Industries chemical leak amounted to $2 million for CAMC's three hospitals. At least $500,000 of that total came from having to purchase linens.The hospital system found and used 7,500 gallons of water from Jan. 9 to the morning of Jan. 13, when the hospitals were cleared to flush their water systems.Board members on Wednesday also announced CAMC's plan to work with Princeton Community Hospital and finalize its merger with Teays Valley.Princeton Community Hospital is a 267-bed facility serving a 10 county region.The Princeton hospital and CAMC will work together on oncology, cardiology and overall quality. Teams will identify improvements in care, collaboration and quality for programs. Officials also will develop rural residency rotations at Princeton in the future, according to CAMC's news release.CAMC President David Ramsey explained this agreement isn't a merger or acquisition.Board members also approved a resolution the merger of CAMC's and Teays Valley's medical staff. The merger takes place March 1.In November, CAMC's board of trustees and board of directors approved the agreement and plan of merger with CAMC's Teays Valley branch.Ramsey previously explained this merger isn't a huge change but instead of Teays Valley being a separate company under the CAMC umbrella, it will just become the fourth hospital in the system.Contact writer Andrea Lannom at Andrea.Lannom@dailymailwv.com or 304-348-5148. Follow her at www.twitter.com/AndreaLannom.