Trustee Gary Brohman was manning the grill at the Food For Kids fundraiser Saturday. /ROBERT MACKENZIE Staff

Peter Fearrey remembered by HHHS

By Chad Ingram

Published Dec. 4 2018

The following are brief reports of items discussing during a Nov. 29 meeting of the Haliburton Highlands Health Services board.

CEO Carolyn Plummer expressed grief and condolences at the passing of Peter Fearrey who worked for HHHS for 43 years and was director of facilities and special projects.

Fearrey passed away on Nov. 26 in his 62nd year.

“It’s had a tremendous impact across the organization” Plummer said. “He also has many family members who work at the organization many close friends and certainly many colleagues who have worked with him for a number of years and developed a close relationship. And so it’s been devastating for the organization.

Plummer expressed condolences to Fearrey’s family.

“Our hearts go out to the family” she said. “We are all thinking about Peter and his contributions.”

“Everywhere you go in here . . . you cannot go anywhere in any of our facilities without seeing some sign of Peter in some way shape or form” Plummer said motioning to the boardroom floor itself. “Even the floor that we walk on that was a project that he led.”

HHHS is chipping away at reducing a deficit that at the end of July was $250000 for the fiscal year. That deficit was due largely to ongoing operating deficits at the organization’s long-term care facilities as well as some revenues that had been frozen by the province.

“Obviously the bleeding needed to be stopped and hopefully turned around” said finance committee chairman David Gray.

Halfway through the fiscal year the deficit had been reduced to approximately $134000 and the organization’s goal is to have it eliminated by the end of March.

A new management plan that is being put in place is expected to help with that.

“Obviously the management plan that was put in place after the September meeting it takes time for that to come into fruition” Gray said.

He said it was possible costs may spike due to factors such as the severity of this year’s flu season.

“Like a lot of things in life there’s a lot of variables that come into play” he said.

“And the biggest one of all is political uncertainty” Gray said saying the organization had a large number of items totalling nearly $1 million it had requested funding for from the province.

HHHS is seeking a new chief of staff a position that has traditionally been filled by a physician working at the organization.

“Currently unfortunately there are no candidates among our current active staff” said current chief of staff Dr. Kristy Gammon explaining that HHHS’s medical advisory committee has recommended advertising for the position “hoping that somebody with a strong skill set is existing within our community.”