California Healthline Daily Edition

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

California Hospital News Roundup for the Week of May 11, 2012

Children's Hospital & Research Center, Oakland

Children's Hospital & Research Center in Oakland has received two grants totaling almost $3 million that will be used to renovate facilities, according to hospital officials, the San Jose Mercury News reports.

The grants come from the federal health reform law and will help the hospital renovate its primary care clinic, teen clinic and Center for the Vulnerable Child (San Jose Mercury News, 5/4).

Chinese Hospital, San Francisco

On Thursday, the San Francisco Planning Commission reviewed plans to add a new outpatient facility to Chinese Hospital, the city's oldest independent community hospital, the San Francisco Chronicle reports.

Next week, the commission is scheduled to review an environmental impact report on replacing the current hospital with a new $160 million facility in Chinatown. The new seven-story hospital would have 54 regular beds and a 22-bed skilled nursing unit (Wildermuth, San Francisco Chronicle, 5/10).

El Camino Hospital, Los Gatos

El Camino Hospital has launched a sleep disorders program, Payers & Providers reports.

Hospital officials said they will integrate the program with several other departments -- such as endocrinology and cardiology -- to assess the underlying cause of a patient's sleep disruption (Payers & Providers, 5/10).

Enloe Medical Center, Chico

The Federal Mediation and Conciliation Services has appointed a mediator to help Enloe Medical Center and the California Nurses Association-National Nurses United reach a new contract, the Chico Enterprise-Record reports.

Carol Linscheid -- vice president of the hospital's human resources department -- said that the hospital and the union had been making progress since negotiations began in November 2011 but that negotiations stalled April 20.

The mediator will attend the next bargaining session on May 25 (Mitchell, Chico Enterprise-Record, 5/4).

John Muir Health, Walnut Creek

On Tuesday, John Muir Health announced that it has leased 144,000 square feet on Treat Boulevard in Walnut Creek for a new outpatient center, the San Francisco Business Times reports.

The new John Muir Health Outpatient Center will include 45 physicians, an urgent care center, a lab and imaging services. It is scheduled to open at the end of 2013 (Rauber, San Francisco Business Times, 5/8).

Loma Linda University Children's Hospital

Loma Linda University Children's Hospital has received a check for $175,000 from the 16th annual Walter's Children's Charity Classic, held in October 2011, the Riverside Press-Enterprise reports.

The funds were raised during the event and will go toward the facility's Pediatric Blood and Marrow/Stem Cell Transplant Unit (Riverside Press-Enterprise, 5/4).

Shasta Regional Medical Center, Redding

Last week, the California Department of Public Health cited Shasta Regional Medical Center for five deficiencies related to repeated breaches of patient confidentiality in 2011, California Watch reports.

State investigators found that the hospital's CEO sent an email to 785 people -- nearly everyone who worked at the hospital -- describing details from confidential files of a 64-year-old patient with diabetes. The patient's files also were shared with journalists, according to California Watch.

The disclosures were part of an effort by Prime Healthcare Services -- which owns the hospital -- to discredit a California Watch story alleging that Prime had overbilled Medicare for a rare form of malnutrition called kwashiorkor (Williams, California Watch, 5/4).

Edward  Barrera -- a Prime spokesperson -- said, "Shasta Regional Medical Center believed and continues to believe that the disclosures, if any, were permitted under both federal and state law."

Prime said it is appealing the state's citations (Terhune, Los Angeles Times, 5/5).

Stanford Hospital & Clinics

On Monday, Stanford Hospital & Clinics launched a $1 billion fundraising campaign, San Jose Mercury News reports.

About $700 million of the funding would go toward building a new 823,000 square-foot hospital, and about $300 million would be allocated for education and research initiatives.

According to the Mercury News, about $500 million already has been committed (Sulek, San Jose Mercury News, 5/8).

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