California Hospital News Roundup for the Week of November 22, 2013
Children's Hospital & Research Center Oakland
On Nov. 5, Children's Hospital & Research Center Oakland completed the first phase of implementing an $89 million Epic Systems electronic health record system that links the center's inpatient operations with an oncology and hematology clinic, the San Francisco Business Times' "Bay Area BizTalk" reports.
Children's spokesperson Melinda Krigel said that other outpatient clinics are scheduled to be linked to the EHR system in March or April 2014 (Rauber, "Bay Area BizTalk," San Francisco Business Times, 11/20).
Corona Regional Medical Center
On Nov. 15, the National Labor Relations Board dismissed a request by Corona Regional Medical Center to reject a January vote by hospital nurses to join United Nurses Associations of California/Union of Health Care Professionals, the Riverside Press-Enterprise reports. A judge rejected claims by the hospital that pro-union physicians and appeals to racial prejudice had interfered with the election and invalidated the vote.
The hospital has until Nov. 29 to appeal the decision (Ghori, Riverside Press-Enterprise, 11/19).
Kaiser Permanente, Manteca
On Nov. 15, protesters demonstrated against service reductions at Kaiser Permanente's Manteca hospital that they argue are causing safety issues and delaying patient care by requiring the transfer of patients to Kaiser's Modesto location, the Stockton Record reports. The protestors -- including the hospital's nurses and patients -- have for several weeks been demonstrating against the cuts, which they say were launched in January.
In response, Kaiser Permanente Senior Vice President Corwin Harper said the protests were a "labor dispute" between Kaiser and the California Nurses Association, which represents Kaiser's registered nurses. He said the location would not close down, adding that the cuts reflected a national trend in declining admissions and length of stay (Goldeen, Stockton Record, 11/16).
Redwood Memorial Hospital, Fortuna
On Tuesday, Redwood Memorial Hospital announced that it lost an unencrypted thumb drive on Nov. 6 that might have contained "identifiable information" on as many as 1,039 patients, the Eureka Times-Standard reports.
Hospital officials said the thumb drive -- which was discovered missing on Nov. 8 -- contained information about a test performed at the hospital's Cardiopulmonary Services Department from 2001 to 2013. The precise type of personal information contained on the drive is unknown, but hospital officials said it does not contain Social Security numbers or financial data.
According to hospital officials, all patients have been notified and the hospital is both reviewing its security policies and checking their thumb drive and mobile devices to ensure that patient data is encrypted (Eureka Times-Standard, 11/20).
Sharp HospiceCare, Bonita
Sharp HospiceCare will start construction in January 2014 on its first location in South County, with completion of the $1.7 million facility expected by late summer or early fall of next year, U-T San Diego reports. The 6,000 square-foot facility will have six private patient rooms.
Sharp Vice President Suzi Johnson said the facility will be staffed with a registered nurse, hospice aides, a physician specializing in palliative care, social workers, spiritual care supporters and volunteers (Sampite-Montecalvo, U-T San Diego, 11/15).
On Nov. 14, Sheridan Healthcare acquired the 100-physician Medical Anesthesia Consultants Medical Group, a San Ramon-based organization that serves five hospitals and 23 outpatient surgery centers across the state, the San Francisco Business Time's "Bay Area BizTalk" reports.
The terms of the deal were not disclosed (Rauber, "Bay Area BizTalk," San Francisco Business Journal, 11/18).
UC-Davis Health System
The UC-Davis Health System more than doubled its net income over the last year, from $34.9 million in fiscal year 2012 to $75.3 million in the fiscal year ending June 30, the Sacramento Business Journal reports. Health system CEO Ann Madden Rice credited the increase in part to an unexpected $37 million Medi-Cal payment. Medi-Cal is California's Medicaid program.
In addition, the hospital's operating revenue increased from $1.34 billion to $1.48 billion, boosting the hospital's profit margin from 2.6% to 5.1%.
Meanwhile, hospital admissions increased by 1.9% and patient days increased by 1.6% (Robertson, Sacramento Business Journal, 11/19).
UC-San Francisco Benioff Children's Hospital
Funds that were raised during the fourth annual "Concert for Kids" on Tuesday will be used to pay for several programs at the UC-San Francisco Benioff Children's Hospital and Children's Hospital & Research Center Oakland, the Bay City News/ Contra Costa Times reports. The funds also will help UCSF build a new 183-bed complex at the university's Mission Bay campus.
UCSF Senior Public Information Representative Juliana Bunim said the current concert already has raised $6 million in sponsorships (Bay City News/Contra Costa Times, 11/18).
UC-San Francisco Medical Center
On Jan. 10, the UC-San Francisco Medical Center will shift 300 finance and patient registration workers to a building in Emeryville that also hosts a Children's Hospital & Research Center Oakland site, according to internal UCSF memos and a source familiar with the matter, the San Francisco Business Times' "Bay Area BizTalk" reports.
The source added that the shift originally was scheduled for early December (Rauber, "Bay Area BizTalk," San Francisco Business Times, 11/19).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.