HONESDALE — More than 40 years after he started at Wayne Memorial Hospital, Chief Financial Officer Mike Clifford said goodbye on the very last day of 2018.  “It’s been a remarkable four decades,” said Clifford, “Wayne Memorial is a small rural hospital, and many hospitals like it have disappeared. But Wayne Memorial has not only survived, it’s thrived. To the employees, board members, Auxilians and the community I have only one thing to say – keep up the good work!” 

            Clifford, who was raised in Avoca in Luzerne County but has lived in Honesdale for many years, played a huge role in the hospital’s sustainability. “Mike always had the good of the hospital and the community in mind,” said CEO David Hoff. “He was conservative when he had to be and open to suggestions when needed. He helped us acquire Sole Community Provider status from Medicare, for example, which means increased reimbursements for Wayne Memorial Hospital. He worked to help us meet an ‘exception’ clause related to weather conditions.

            “Mike was also instrumental in many important developments throughout the health system including helping establish the Wayne Memorial Community Health Centers, a federally qualified health center which has increased access to primary care and other medical providers for hundreds, if not thousands, in our community; and obtaining the financing for our new multi-million dollar patient tower that will open in the Spring.”

            Before he left Wayne Memorial, Clifford was “roasted” by management staff, who poked fun at his “frugality,” including his use of a motorized bike in the summer to save money on gas.  They called him “Scooter Mike.”   The CFO often used song lines to punctuate his financial reports and one manager told him, in the words of the Eagles, “lighten up now, Mike and take it easy!” or maybe, said Stacey Goodenough, medical records manager/privacy officer, “you would prefer Michael Jackson—just beat it!”

            Clifford’s staff wished him well and hope he’ll visit now and then. In the coming years, Clifford hopes to spend more time with his wife Janice, his two sons and their growing families.

Chief Accountant Patricia Dunsinger will fill in as Acting CFO.