California Hospital News Roundup for the Week of December 5, 2014
Alta Bates Summit Medical Center, Oakland
Sutter Health System's Alta Bates Summit Medical Center has partnered with a New Jersey physician to implement the Camden Coalition model, a program that uses big data analytics to better coordinate health care for frequent users of the emergency department, the Daily Review/San Jose Mercury News reports.
Specifically, the program uses the data to determine where frequent ED users live and what medical conditions they have, according to the Daily Review/Mercury News. The medical center shares the information with its partner clinics to ensure those patients have a physician and an individual care program (Parr, Daily Review/San Jose Mercury News, 11/28).
Chino Valley Medical Center
Certain patients at the Chino Valley Medical Center now are required to use wearable remote monitoring devices as part of the hospital's internal patient safety protocols, MobiHealthNews reports.
The Leaf Patient Monitoring System, developed by Leaf Healthcare, monitors a patient's movements in bed, wirelessly uploads the data to a central monitoring station for physician review and notifies physicians when a patient needs to be turned to prevent pressure ulcers (Comstock, MobiHealthNews, 12/3).
Dignity Health System
U.S. District Court Judge Thelton Henderson has stayed a ruling over whether the Dignity Health System is exempt from federal pension rules until the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals decides whether it will hear the case, the Sacramento Business Journal reports. Henderson has twice ruled against Dignity Health.
The lawsuit, filed in 2013, alleges that Dignity Health is underfunding its pension by $1.2 billion, but the health system contends that as a "church plan," it is should be exempt from federal rules. Henderson has twice ruled against Dignity Health (Robertson, Sacramento Business Journal, 12/2).
Doctors Medical Center, San Pablo
On Tuesday, the Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors approved two measures to provide financial assistance to Doctors Medical Center, KQED's "State of Health" reports.
Specifically, the board voted to delay the hospital's $3 million property tax payment and will permanently waive $9 million in future repayment if DMC can fund itself for the next three years.
The hospital, which filed for bankruptcy in 2010, is currently trying to complete an eight-point plan outlined in November by the West Contra Costa Healthcare District that aims to restore the center's emergency department and prevent closure for at least five years ("State of Health," KQED, 12/2).
Sutter Santa Rosa Regional Hospital
Sutter Santa Rosa Regional Hospital and Sutter Pacific Medical Foundation, the hospital's affiliated physician group, have donated $12,500 to two local food banks, the Santa Rosa Press Democrat reports.
Specifically, the hospital and foundation donated $6,250 each to the Ceres Project and the Redwood Empire Food Bank. According to the Press Democrat, the funds are part of $255,000 that Sutter Health is giving to food banks across Hawaii and Northern California (Espinoza, Santa Rosa Press Democrat, 11/24).
UCLA Health System
UCLA Health System providers soon will begin submitting tobacco-cessation electronic referrals to the California Smokers' Helpline via patients' electronic health records, Health Data Management reports.
The tobacco cessation helpline offers free services, such as telephone counseling and follow-up support, which UCLA officials say can double the chances of long-term tobacco cessation (Goth, Health Data Management, 12/3).
UC-San Diego Health System
The UC-San Diego Health System has reached its fundraising goal of $131 million to help pay for the construction of a new medical facility, U-T San Diego reports.
The health system set the goal in 2012 when ground-breaking took place at the Jacobs Medical Center in La Jolla. The new 10-story facility, which is designed to support clinical trials and other medical research, is divided into three sub-hospitals: one for cancer services, one for advanced surgery and a third for women and children. It is scheduled to open in July 2016 (Sisson, U-T San Diego, 11/20).
ValleyCare Health System
ValleyCare Health System won 97% approval from community members for its merger with Stanford Health Care, the San Francisco Business Times' "Bay Area BizTalk" reports.
According to "Bay Area BizTalk," community leaders make up a corporate membership and help govern the not-for-profit system. The corporate membership approval permits the merger to move forward, but the deal still requires approval from state Attorney General Kamala Harris (D), who must make a decision in about 100 days (Rauber, "Bay Area BizTalk," San Francisco Business Times, 11/24).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.