California Healthline Highlights Recent Hospital News
Contra Costa County officials on Tuesday announced that they have submitted a correction plan to CMS for Contra Costa Regional Medical Center, the Contra Costa Times reports. The agency had threatened to cancel the hospital's Medicare and Medi-Cal contracts after it failed a recent inspection.
Federal investigators in February are expected to return to the hospital to follow up on the correction plan.
The inspection cited violations in the hospital's psychiatric unit, food service and pharmacy operations. The contracts will be canceled by March 15 if the correction plan is not approved.
The loss of funding likely would close the hospital, according to the Times (Kleffman, Contra Costa Times, 1/17).
Eisenhower Medical Center last week began construction of a $212.5 million, 160-bed facility that will expand inpatient services and replace an 88-bed wing that does not meet the state's seismic safety standards, the Palm Springs Desert Sun reports.
The new four-story building, set to open in 2009, will feature upgrades to technology and patient care services, as well as a $27.5 million expansion to the emergency department that will more than double its size (Solvig, Desert Sun, 1/12).
Officials at Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian last week said the eight-bed inpatient children's ward will remain open, despite infrequent use, the Orange County Register reports. Officials also announced that pediatric services will be expanded in a relationship with Children's Hospital of Orange County.
Children's Hospital physicians will consult electronically with pediatric patients in Hoag's ED. Children's Hospital also will lend staff to Hoag's neonatal intensive care unit (Bernhard, Orange County Register, 1/13).
Los Angeles County on Tuesday approved an additional $15.1 million contract for Olive View-UCLA Medical Center to upgrade its facility to meet seismic safety standards, the Los Angeles Daily News reports. The seismic retrofit is set to begin next month and be completed in December 2008.
The hospital also is building a new emergency department and tuberculosis unit. The total funding for all three projects is almost $77 million, 30% greater than its original $58.5 million estimate. Construction of the ED and TB unit is set to begin later this year and be completed in 2010 (Anderson, Los Angeles Daily News, 1/16).
A consultant in a report to Attorney General Jerry Brown (D) endorsed the sale of not-for-profit Paradise Valley Hospital in National City to for-profit Prime Healthcare Services, the San Diego Union-Tribune reports. Brown's approval is required before the sale can be finalized.
Phil Dalton of Medical Development Specialists in El Segundo wrote the report, which said the sale "is likely to be beneficial ... with few negative impacts on the availability and accessibility of health care services." The report also contained recommendations for Prime Healthcare.
Brown is expected to decide by Feb. 19 whether to approve, block or put conditions on the sale. He will hold a public hearing Jan. 25 in National City to discuss the transaction (Clark, San Diego Union-Tribune, 1/14).