California Hospital News Roundup for the Week of October 25, 2013
AHMC Healthcare, Alhambra
On Monday, AHMC Healthcare officials said thieves broke into a secure medical campus on Oct. 12 and stole two password-protected laptops containing the health information of 729,000 patients, the Los Angeles Times' "L.A. Now" reports.
The data included patients' social security numbers, names, Medicare and insurance identification numbers, diagnosis and procedure codes, and insurance payments. The affected patients were treated at six AHMC hospitals, including Garfield Medical Center, Monterey Park Hospital, Greater El Monte Community Hospital, Whittier Hospital Medical Center, San Gabriel Valley Medical Center and Anaheim Regional Medical Center (Winton, "L.A. Now," Los Angeles Times, 10/21).
On Wednesday, police arrested a 36-year-old male suspect who was discovered on security footage, but the laptops have not yet been recovered (Koerner, Orange County Register, 10/23).
AHMC officials said there is no evidence that the data have been accessed, but they said that patients should place alerts on their credit reports and check for fraudulent activity ("KPCC News," AP/KPCC, 10/21).
Casa Pacifica Centers for Children & Families, Camarillo
On Oct. 20, Casa Pacifica Centers for Children & Families launched a $21 million fundraising effort to expand its current campus and develop a new 58,000 square-foot, two-story administration building, the Ventura County Star reports.
The expansion will add eight buildings and two classrooms to the current 24-acre campus, as well as clinic rooms and about 32 new beds (Letzer, Ventura County Star, 10/19).
Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles
Last week, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center announced that it will distribute $3.3 million in grants to organizations working on community health, education and safety projects in Los Angeles, KPCC's "KPCC News" reports.
Charles Drew University of Medicine and Science will receive the largest grant -- which totals $1.5 million -- to fund student scholarships. Other grant recipients include Saban Community Clinic, Venice Family Clinic and Planned Parenthood-Los Angeles, among others (Kim, "KPCC News," KPCC, 10/17).
Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian, Newport Beach
On Monday, Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian in Newport Beach announced that it will partner with the University of Southern California's Keck School of Medicine to establish a cancer and oncology services program at the Hoag Family Cancer Institute, Modern Healthcare reports. The institute treats more than 3,000 newly diagnosed individuals annually.
The alliance will give Hoag patients access to resources, services and clinical trials available through USC's Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center (Landen, Modern Healthcare, 10/21).
Kaiser Permanente, Murrieta
On Monday, Kaiser Permanente submitted to city officials a conceptual plan for a 900,000 square-foot medical campus in Murrieta that would be built in five phases, the Riverside Press-Enterprise reports.
Kaiser Permanente spokesperson Karen Roberts did not say whether Kaiser would continue to pursue a similar application submitted last year for a hospital and center in Temecula. She added that Kaiser had not yet decided what would be included in the medical campus (Downey, Riverside Press-Enterprise, 10/21).
San Francisco General Hospital
Officials investigating the death of a woman who was found in a stairwell at San Francisco General Hospital are looking into reports that an orderly notified a hospital nurse that he saw an unconscious woman there one week prior to the discovery of her body, according to the San Francisco Chronicle, the AP/Contra Costa Times reports (AP/Contra Costa Times, 10/21).
The patient -- a 57-year-old woman -- was admitted to the hospital on Sept. 19 with an infection and was found to be missing from her hospital room on Sept. 21. On Oct. 8, a member of the hospital's engineering staff found the woman's body in a hospital stairwell used as a fire escape (California Health Line, 10/18).
On Oct. 1, the orderly told a nurse he had stepped over an unconscious woman in the stairwell twice, and the nurse notified the Sheriff's Department. According to the Chronicle, police have not yet determined how the department responded (AP/Contra Costa Times, 10/21).
San Joaquin General Hospital
On Oct. 16, a temporary panel overseeing San Joaquin General Hospital met to discuss changes during the facility's first two months as the county's designated trauma center, San Joaquin Record reports. Officials also discussed financing changes under federal health care reform.
It was the first meeting since the panel's operations were extended in April for an additional six months.
The panel has not yet recommended criteria for a permanent governing board (Johnson, San Joaquin Record, 10/21).
San Leandro Hospital
Sutter Health will transfer ownership of the 93-bed San Leandro Hospital to Alameda Health System at the end of October, The Daily Review/Contra Costa Times reports. Alameda Health System will maintain the hospital in its current state during the first year while drawing up plans to convert the unused fourth floor into a rehabilitation center.
In addition, Alameda Health System has pledged to keep the hospital's emergency department and other acute services open if it receives adequate financial assistance (Parr, The Daily Review/Contra Costa Times, 10/18).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.