It would appear that there is no end to the information we can dig up about the service contracts between El Paso Children’s Hospital and UMC. Today we thought we would talk about the receiving dock. For those of you that don’t know, a receiving dock (or loading dock) is an area of the building where goods are loaded and unloaded; it is a place where large trucks deposit their goods. For a hospital, this is the hub for receiving and sending out goods like food, laundry, medical supplies and medical waste. Without the receiving dock, these items would be going in and out of the front door of the hospital, not an ideal situation. Providence Memorial Hospital has a receiving dock, University Medical Center has a receiving dock. How many receiving docks does El Paso Children’s Hospital have? ZERO. According to court papers “UMC controls the only receiving dock in the entire hospital complex.” (http://elpasochildrens.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/Document-183.pdf page 15). Then UMC, under Schedule A-3 “Materials Management” would charge El Paso Children’s Hospital for Central Supply, Receiving, Purchasing, and MMIS (Material Management in the IT Systems). For these services, the El Paso Children’s Hospital would then pay $440,504.00 a year. This certainly puts statements like this one from Veronica Escobar in a new light:
“This means they need to find new vendors for all those services because UMC won’t provide them,” Escobar said. “This isn’t new. Last year, when they began complaining that they were being overcharged, we said go get your services elsewhere, and they chose not to.” (http://www.elpasoinc.com/news/local_news/article_fe1a7eb2-4ff7-11e5-b8ae-3ba9ee7df163.html).
Where, exactly, was the El Paso Children’s Hospital supposed to get these services? If they do not have a receiving dock of their own, what other option do they have but to pay for these services from UMC. This is the second instance that we have found where the building we, the tax payers, financed is not a complete building. First there was the fact that it is not separately metered. Now we find out that it does not have its own receiving dock. What exactly did our $120 Million buy us?