California Hospital News Roundup for the Week of March 28, 2014
Alta Bates Summit Medical Center, Berkeley
Alta Bates Summit Medical Center and the California Nurses Association are waiting for a final decision by an outside arbitrator on whether the hospital system can proceed with planned layoffs and nursing staff restructuring, the Sacramento Business Journal reports (Rauber, Sacramento Business Journal, 3/25).
The planned layoffs and restructuring originally were scheduled to take effect on March 2, but CNA filed a lawsuit against the hospital over the plans, contending that they violated contract requirements. Earlier this month, a U.S. district court judge issued a temporary restraining order that prevents Alta Bates from implementing the plans (California Healthline, 3/7).
Alta Bates spokesperson Carolyn Kemp said that briefs will be submitted to the arbitrator on April 4, who then has up to 30 days to issue a ruling (Sacramento Business Journal, 2/25).
Doctors Medical Center, San Pablo
On Wednesday, the West Contra Costa Healthcare District Board of Directors announced that Doctors Medical Center would be forced to close as early as July 25 if it did not secure three funding streams over the next few months, the Contra Costa Times reports.
Specifically, DMC needs at least $3.5 million in funding by May, and voters must approve a new parcel tax on May 6 (Rogers, Contra Costa Times, 3/26). That tax, if approved by district voters, is projected to raise about $20 million annually (California Healthline, 2/7). Lastly, the hospital needs to secure an addition $13 million in bridge funding over the summer in order to continue operations through December, when revenue from the parcel tax would start coming in (Contra Costa Times, 3/26).
El Centro Regional Medical Center
The El Centro Regional Medical Center's medical executive committee recently discussed expanding the hospital's proposed affiliation with Scripps Health Care System to include Pioneers Memorial Hospital in Brawley, the Imperial Valley Press reports.
However, a PMH board member said he opposes such an affiliation because the hospital already is in affiliation talks with several other health systems (Daly, Imperial Valley Press, 3/23).
Good Samaritan Hospital, San Jose
On Wednesday, Good Samaritan Hospital in San Jose opened its Silicon Valley Institute for Robotic Surgery, the San Jose Mercury News reports.
The institute will outfit doctors with robotic tools for increased vision, precision and dexterity during surgery (Pizarro, San Jose Mercury News, 3/26).
Kaiser Permanente, Sacramento
Sacramento city officials are urging Kaiser Permanente to build a hospital in the 184-acre Sleep Train Arena site after the Sacramento Kings move into a new downtown arena in 2016, the Sacramento Bee's "City Beat" reports.
Rob Azevedo, physician-in-chief for Kaiser Permanente medical group in Sacramento, said the health care system is "aggressively looking at building a hospital somewhere in the (Sacramento) area" and had "been in discussions throughout the city with multiple people." However, he declined to specify whether the group has negotiated with the Sacramento Kings (Lillis, "City Beat," Sacramento Bee, 3/25).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.