California Hospital News Roundup for the Week of January 16, 2009
Community Hospital, Los Gatos
On Jan. 8, Tenet Healthcare said it will cease operations at Community Hospital in Los Gatos on April 10, the Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal reports.
The company announced in July that it would not renew its lease at the hospital because of the cost of capital improvements needed to upgrade the facility. El Camino Hospital will purchase real estate and other assets of Community Hospital from real estate investment firm HCP (Weselby, Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal, 1/8).
John Muir Medical Center, Walnut Creek
Expansion efforts are underway at John Muir Medical Center's Concord and Walnut Creek campuses, the Contra Costa Times reports.
The projects -- which include adding private patient rooms, rebuilding emergency departments and building a heart center -- will cost $800 million.
The John Muir Health Foundation aims to raise $56 million in donations by 2011. The group has $28.6 million so far, with $27.6 million dedicated to the Walnut Creek campus and $1 million for new patient rooms at the Concord campus (Rose, Contra Costa Times, 1/9).
Kaiser Permanente Women's & Children's Center, Roseville
Kaiser Permanente on Jan. 13 opened its new Women & Children's Center in Roseville, the Sacramento Bee reports.
The $150 million facility has 24 private maternity suites, 60 private postpartum recovery rooms, a 48-bed neonatal intensive care unit, a 32-bed pediatric unit and a 10-bed pediatric intensive care unit (Coronado, Sacramento Bee, 1/8).
Motion Picture and Television Fund
On Jan. 14,Â the Motion Picture and Television Fund said it will close both its Woodland Hills hospital and nursing home due to financial problems, the Los Angeles Times reports.
The fund said that it would expand its existing network of care and relocate roughly 100 long-term care patients to area nursing homes (Girion/Verrier, Los Angeles Times, 1/14).Â Other operations on the 40-acre campus owned by the fund will remain open, including assisted-living facilities, cottage residences and other health care and recreational services (Abram, Los Angeles Daily News, 1/15).
David Tillman, fund CEO, in a statement said rapidly rising health care costs and decreasing government reimbursements are placing a great deal of pressure on the fund (Los Angeles Times, 1/14).
Palomar Pomerado Health District
On Jan. 8, David Tam, who oversees Palomar Pomerado Health District's newest hospital in Escondido, told the district board that completing the project would require about $74 million more than originally appropriated, the San Diego Union-Tribune reports.
In May 2007, the district budgeted for $774 million to be spent on the hospital's construction and $42 million to be spent on equipment.
The additional costs are related to construction, equipment and changes the state mandated, Tam said (Lou, San Diego Union-Tribune, 1/10).
San Joaquin General Hospital
San Joaquin General Hospital has signed a contract, effective immediately, to serve members of Anthem Blue Cross, the Stockton Record reports.
The contract allows people enrolled in the insurer's managed-care and insurance maintenance plans to have access to medical care at the highest level of benefits.
In addition, those enrolled in Blue Cross's Prudent Buyer PPO Plan and CaliforniaCare HMO and Point of Service plan are able to use the county's hospital services under the agreement (Goldeen, Stockton Record, 1/10).
St. Agnes Medical Center, Fresno
St. Agnes Medical Center officials on Jan. 8 announced that 28 positions at the medical center will be eliminated due to the continuing economic downturn, the Fresno Bee reports.
St. Agnes Director of Communications Kelley Sanchez said that the positions did not directly involve patient care, and noted that the hospital continues to recruit nurses and other patient-care personnel.
The 436-bed facility currently employees more than 2,900 workers (Sheehan, Fresno Bee, 1/8).
Tulare District Hospital
Tulare District Hospital has established a phone line that patients can call for assistance in finding a physician who best meets their needs, the Visalia Times-Delta reports.
Hospital spokesperson Linda Crase said the no-cost referral service will accept calls 24 hours a day and seven days a week (Visalia Times-Delta, 1/7).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.