Executive session for IPC? Maybe, to discuss IMC report

Iberia Medical Center Board member Frederick “Bozo” Metz will be the subject of a potential executive session during Wednesday night’s regular meeting of the Iberia Parish Council. The council will consider whether Metz should be removed for cause from the IMC Board of Commissioners.

The Iberia Parish Council may go into executive session Wednesday night to discuss the portions of an investigative report compiled against Iberia Medical Center Board member Frederick “Bozo” Metz.

The Parish Council has been playing “hot potato” with the report even before it was completed. When the IMC Board came to an IPC meeting in August, after former IMC Chief Operating Officer Parker Templeton announced his resignation, asking council members to support asking Metz and IMC Board member David Benson to resign, the council instead supported only having the investigative report compiled.

The report was delivered to the IMC Board on Oct. 8 and given to Iberia Parish Council members on Oct. 9. Even in touching the report, council members were leery, changing the wording of the motion acknowledging that copies had been delivered from “accepted the report” to “received the report” to be sure there was no taint of actual agreement in the decision.

At its Oct. 23 meeting, however, the council was not prepared to discuss the report. And because Metz was not available for the following regular meeting on Nov. 13, the council scheduled the discussion for Nov. 20.

Although Metz and Benson were the subject of the report, Benson is not scheduled to appear.

The report of the investigation cites nine witnesses who described Metz’ actions and statements detrimental to the IMC board and seven witnesses describing Benson’s statements and actions that were not in the best interests of the hospital.

In the summary, the report differentiated between Metz’ actions and those of Benson.

“Thus, there is evidence summarized earlier in this section, showing that Mr. Metz has engaged in conduct that has, according to the witnesses, produced ‘results detrimental or prejudicial to the efficiency’ of Iberia Medical Center. There is also evidence that the hospital staff believes that Dr. Benson was incorrectly placed on the board and that they believe that Dr. Benson’s disruptive nature interferes with his team work, and is generally harmful to the hospital.”

Because the Parish Council was the appointing authority for Metz and Benson, any action to remove either or both of them from the IMC Board would have to come from the council.

The hospital’s Medical Executive Committee brought the issue of removing the two board members to the IMC board in the form of its own resolution during a special meeting on Aug. 7. Dr. Michelle Menard, the hospital’s chief of medical staff, read a resolution demanding the resignation of both Metz and Benson. Of the more than 130 physicians who serve IMC, 32 voted — 30 in favor of the resolution, one opposed and one abstained.

The move came less than two weeks after IMC Chief Executive Officer Parker Templeton tendered his resignation on July 25.

The Iberia Parish Council will meet at 6 p.m. Wednesday on the fourth floor of the Iberia Parish Courthouse, 300 Iberia St.

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