Attorney General’s Office Rejects Sale of Anaheim Memorial Medical Center
On Thursday, Attorney General Jerry Brown's (D) office rejected Pacific Health's bid to purchase Anaheim Memorial Medical Center for $57.1 million, the Orange County Register reports.
Approval from the attorney general's office is required because Pacific Health is a for-profit entity and Anaheim Memorial is a not-for-profit facility (Perkes, Orange County Register, 8/14).
In a written decision, Chief Deputy Attorney General James Humes stated, "We have concluded that this proposed sale is not in the public interest and will likely create a significant effect on the availability or accessibility of health care services to the affected community."
The ruling cited concerns about "pending criminal investigations" and a civil complaint that Los Angeles City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo filed last week against two hospitals owned by Pacific Health. Both cases center on the facilities' alleged involvement in a Medicare and Medi-Cal fraud scheme involving homeless patients.
Medi-Cal is California's Medicaid program (Christensen, Los Angeles Times, 8/15).
The rejection of the sale is the third time since 2007 that plans to sell Anaheim Memorial have unraveled (Orange County Register, 8/14).
Fountain Valley-based Memorial Health Care Services has owned the hospital since 1995 and put it on the market in 2006. A spokesperson for Memorial Health Care said the hospital chain is evaluating its options.
The proposed sale to Pacific Health had drawn some opposition, but Mark Miller, a cardiologist and chief-of-staff elect at the hospital, said the collapse was a "disappointment" (Los Angeles Times, 8/15).
Miller raised questions about the facility's future, including whether it would be sold to an entrepreneur or closed (Orange County Register, 8/14).
An analysis for the attorney general's office indicates that Anaheim Memorial will need at least $100 million in upgrades over the next 10 years (Los Angeles Times, 8/15).