By A.J. Etherington
The Courier 

Valley View Home Hires New Administrator

 

March 14, 2018

A.J. Etherington / The Courier

Frank "Wes" Thompson sits behind his new desk at Valley View Home.

Valley View Nursing Home hired Navy Veteran Frank "Wes" Thompson to take over as the permanent administrator for the home. Thompson will be the first permanent administrator to fill the role at Valley View since the dismissal of Health Management Services in early 2017. Prior to the hiring of Thompson, the position was held by interim administrators Judy Melin and Kent Hanawalt.

Thompson, a native of Texas, joined the Navy out of High School as a Corpsman, or medic. After serving some time stateside and in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba in 2003 and 2004, he found himself as part of Marine Corps' Fallujah Offensive in Iraq's Al Anbar Province in. Following that tour of duty, he became an Individual Duty Corpsman and reported to Camp Hanson, Okinawa, Japan where he became the acting Medical Officer.

During his tenure at Camp Hanson, he was also deployed in support of the Joint Special Operations Task Force in the Philippines before being redeployed stateside. After returning to Camp Pendleton, Calif., Thompson was deployed to Iraq's Camp Korean Village in 2008 to 2009. He then became an instructor at Individual Duty Corpsman School in the Navy, and followed that with a tour at Joint Personnel Accounting Command where he oversaw operations to repatriate the remains of soldiers from places like Papua New Guinea and Vietnam, amongst others.


Most recently, Thompson served as a Navy Medical Officer and Clinic Manager until 2016 before leaving the Navy to study in Bozeman. Thompson has earned degrees in Health Care Management and was completing a Master's in Health Administration with an emphasis in Human Resources before moving to Glasgow.

Thompson seemed excited and confident to take on the role at Valley View Home despite the difficulties he faces with budget constraints and medicaid reimbursement, the upcoming vote to pass a hospital district, and with recent turnover in staffing. Still, when asked about his outlook he responded, "I love it," adding, "I am super confident and super comfortable here."

He backed up that confidence stating that he wants to streamline the home and focus on employee welfare and retention. "If we can make it more comfortable for the employees, that will trickle down to the residents," explained Thompson as he described his immediate goals.

Thompson also pointed out that budgeting and retention need to be his focuses going forward as well. He described the nursing apprenticeship program as being beneficial to recruiting and retaining quality nursing assistants and investing in them for the betterment of the person and the home. His long-term goal is to reduce contract nursing support permanently to eliminate the logistical support of travel and housing required for those positions.


Thompson clarified, "Retention reduces costs and increases expertise." He feels it will make the home more efficient over time, reduce logistical overhead and turnover, and help with the overall environment at Valley View.

Thompson looks forward to making his home in Glasgow, with his wife and four daughters.

 

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