California Hospital News Roundup for the Week of December 3, 2010
Adventist Medical Center-Hanford
The California Department of Health Care Services has approved Adventist Medical Center-Hanford's plan to open on Dec. 5, the Fresno Business Journal reports.
When fully operational, the $114 million hospital will employ 780 full-time workers and provide 142 patient beds. Several other Adventist Health medical centers in the Central Valley region are planning changes, including:
- Central Valley General Hospital, which will expand obstetrical services to its second floor;
- Hanford Community Medical Center, which will be renamed Adventist Health/Central Valley Network-Support Services; and
- Selma Community Hospital, which will be renamed Adventist Medical Center-Selma next year (Fresno Business Journal, 11/29).
Heritage Oaks Hospital, Roseville
Sacramento-based Heritage Oaks Hospital recently opened a new psychiatric outpatient and day treatment center in Roseville, the Sacramento Business Journal reports.
The new center offers day treatment, intensive group-based outpatient programs and outpatient services for Medicare beneficiaries. The center is licensed to serve 25 patients but expects to expand to 35 patients in the future (Robertson, Sacramento Business Journal, 11/19).
Loma Linda University Medical Center, Murrieta
Officials say Loma Linda University Medical Center in Murrieta is on schedule for its expected opening on March 7, the Riverside Press-Enterprise reports.
When complete, the $211 million facility will add 106 hospital beds to southwest Riverside County, which has three times fewer hospital beds per capita than the U.S. average. A proposed third phase of construction would add another 120 beds.
The new Murrieta medical facility is co-owned by Loma Linda University and a physician group. The medical center is seeking a waiver for a provision in the federal health reform law that bans new doctor-owned hospitals from receiving Medicare and Medicaid reimbursements (Hill, Riverside Press-Enterprise, 11/24).
Los Robles Hospital & Medical Center, Thousand Oaks
In November, Los Robles Hospital & Medical Center installed a $1.6 million robotic surgical system called the da Vinci Si Surgical System, the Ventura County Star reports.
The system, which cost an additional $300,000 for instrumentation, is equipped with surgical instruments and a high-definition camera. A surgeon stationed at a console can operate the robotic system for biopsies, gynecological procedures, hysterectomies, lung cancer treatments and prostate cancer surgeries (Kisken, Ventura County Star, 11/20).
March LifeCare, Riverside County
Riverside Medical Clinic recently signed an official agreement with March Healthcare Development to assist in the development of the March LifeCare medical campus at the former March Air Force Base, the Riverside Press-Enterprise reports.
The terms of the agreement were not disclosed. March Healthcare Development has signed letters of intent with numerous entities that plan to contribute to the March LifeCare project, but the agreement with Riverside Medical Clinic is the first to become official (Pierceall, Riverside Press-Enterprise, 11/18).
Martin Luther King Jr. Medical Center, Los Angeles
On Tuesday, Pasadena-based Jacobs Engineering Group received a $365 million contract from the Los Angeles County Department of Public Works to provide construction management services for the renovation of Martin Luther King Jr. Medical Center, the Los Angeles Business Journal reports.
The project will include a renovation of the hospital's inpatient tower, which is expected to be completed in early 2013. The contract also covers the construction of a multiservice ambulatory care facility, which is slated for completion later in 2013 (Los Angeles Business Journal, 11/30).
Mills-Peninsula Health Services, Burlingame
This weekend, Mills-Peninsula Health Services is moving its mental health services unit from Peninsula Medical Center in Burlingame to Mills Health Center in San Mateo, the San Jose Mercury News reports.
The 52-bed, 40,000 square-foot facility will replace Mills Health Center's acute rehabilitation center, which has closed.
The new unit will include:
- An inpatient facility for psychiatric patients;
- An outpatient facility for mental health patients; and
- An inpatient chemical dependency program (Rosenberg, San Jose Mercury News, 12/1).
Palo Alto Medical Foundation
On Wednesday, Palo Alto Medical Foundation announced plans to lay off 50 employees on Dec. 15 and three additional employees on Jan. 3, the San Jose Mercury News reports.
Some of the workers slated for layoffs include:
- Imaging workers;
- Licensed vocational nurses;
- Medical assistants;
- Patient service representatives; and
- Registered nurses.
Cynthia Greaves, spokesperson for the foundation, said most of the employees facing layoffs work at PAMF's Palo Alto Center, while others work at PAMF's Fremont or Mountain View Center. Greaves said the foundation attempted to avoid layoffs by reassigning workers to different jobs, eliminating vacant positions and offering employees a voluntary early exit program. She added that the layoffs will not affect the foundation's plans to build a hospital in San Carlos (Dungan, San Jose Mercury News, 12/1).
Palomar Medical Center West, Escondido
Palomar Medical Center West, which currently is under construction, is installing a green roof that will be at least partially covered by vegetation, the San Diego Union-Tribune reports. Planting on the 60,000 square-foot roof started last week and is expected to be completed by Dec. 17.
Andy Hoang, spokesperson for Palomar Pomerado Health, acknowledged that the green roof is more expensive than traditional roofs but added that the hospital will recover costs through energy and water savings over a seven-year period. The green roof costs about $10 per square foot, according to Hoang (Breier, San Diego Union-Tribune, 11/20).
Sharp Chula Vista Medical Center
The emergency department at Sharp Chula Vista Medical Center is undergoing a $12 million expansion that will more than double its capacity, the San Diego Union-Tribune reports.
The expansion is expected to increase the number of ED beds from 20 to 48. The size of the ED also will increase from 8,000 square feet to 14,500 square feet.
Funding for the construction project comes from the medical center's revenue, bonds and the Sharp HealthCare Foundation. The project is expected to be completed within 18 months (Fry, San Diego Union-Tribune, 11/25).
Sutter Health, Elk Grove
The board of directors for Sutter Health recently approved $10.8 million for the construction of an ambulatory surgery center and infrastructure work for a new 68-bed hospital in Elk Grove, the Sacramento Business Journal reports.
About $8.5 million of the funds will go toward the outpatient center, which is slated to begin construction in May 2011 and be completed a year later. The remaining $2.3 million will go toward the infrastructure work for the hospital (Robertson, Sacramento Business Journal, 11/18). The hospital project is expected to cost about $200 million and would be part of Sutter Health's planned 43-acre medical campus in Elk Grove (Calvan, Sacramento Bee, 11/19).
UC-Davis Medical Center, Sacramento
During the last fiscal year, UC-Davis Medical Center's net income increased by more than 25% and revenue from operations revenue rose by 24%, the Sacramento Business Journal reports.
Although patient volume fell slightly during that time period, revenue increased by 3.2%, partly because of higher rates from health insurers and a one-time Medicare settlement, according to the hospital's financial report. The report details financial trends for the medical center during the same year that it opened a $484 million emergency pavilion in stages (Robertson, Sacramento Business Journal, 11/26).
UC-San Francisco Medical Center
UC-San Francisco Medical Center recently offered $700 million in bonds under the Build America program to support UCSF's plans to build a hospital complex in Mission Bay, the San Francisco Business Times reports. The bonds set aside for the Mission Bay project were part of a $757 million bond offering organized in conjunction with the University of California's Office of the President.
UCSF Medical Center CEO Mark Laret said the bond offering could help the medical center reduce spending by $150 million over the next 38 years. By 2014, UCSF expects to complete construction of its $1.52 billion women's, children's and cancer hospital in Mission Bay (Rauber, San Francisco Business Times, 11/26).
United Health Centers, Parlier
On Nov. 22, officials held a ceremony marking the next phase of construction for a planned 20,000 square-foot administrative and dental facility at United Health Centers in Parlier, the Fresno Bee reports.
The next phase involves the construction of the facility's steel frame. The expansion project is expected to be completed by April 2011 (Fresno Bee, 11/22).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.