California Hospital News Roundup for the Week of October 9, 2009
Arrowhead Regional Medical Center, Colton
Arrowhead Regional Medical Center has been awarded a $245,334 grant from the California HealthCare Foundation, which will allow the facility to fully implement its Palliative Care Service program, the San Bernardino County Sun reports.
CHCF is the publisher of California Healthline.
The two-year grant will allow the program to serve about 144 patients in the first year, and twice that number in the second year, hospital officials said (Sorba, San Bernardino County Sun, 10/6).
El Camino Hospital, Mountain View
On Saturday, El Camino Hospital held a ribbon-cutting ceremony for its new $480 million acute care center, the San Jose Mercury News reports.
The 450,000 square foot expansion adds an additional 241 beds to the hospital, bringing the total number of beds on the campus to 327.
El Camino began the construction on the facility five years ago to meet new state seismic safety standards (Samuels, San Jose Mercury News, 10/3).Â Â
Los Alamitos Medical Center
Los Alamitos Medical Center has released a 25-year expansion plan that calls for a new 80,000 square foot medical office building, two new towers with a maximum capacity of 602 beds, parking structures and a central plant for the campus, the Orange County Register reports.Â
The Los Alamitos City Council is considering serving as the head agency on the facility's environmental report for the expansion plan.
The hospital would give the city $50,000 toward the cost of the study up front and reimburse the city for the remaining cost of the study (Fletcher, Orange County Register, 10/2).
Ojai Valley Community Hospital, Ventura County
Last week, Ojai Valley Community Hospital held a ribbon-cutting ceremony for its renovated emergency department, the Ventura County Star reports. The $2 million project included $1.7 million for the ED and the rest for other repairs.
The ED now has a separate admitting and waiting area and six new treatment areas.
According to Tim Wolfe, chair of the Ojai Valley Community Hospital Foundation, the hospital still needs to make seismic retrofits, renovate the exterior, improve the radiology department and open a new post-anesthesia unit (Kallas, Ventura County Star, 10/1).
Scripps Health, San Diego County
Scripps Health has begun offering a genetic test aimed at determining whether stent patients would benefit from anti-platelet drug therapy, HealthLeaders Media reports.
The hospital network says it is the first in the country to make such a move.
Matthew Price, director of the cardiac catheterization lab at Scripps Green Hospital in La Jolla, said he expects the test to be offered to about 70 to 100 of the 250 Scripps Clinic patients who undergo angioplasty each month. He said he expects most to agree to the test (Clark, HealthLeaders Media, 10/8).
St. John's Health Center, Santa Monica
St. John's Health Center in Santa Monica has received $100 million from Abraxis BioScience founder and CEO Patrick Soon-Shiong and his wife, Michele Chan, to develop a state-of-the-art data-sharing network that links physicians and patients to other hospitals and ongoing research being conducted at USC and UCLA, the Los Angeles Times reports.
The donation is the largest individual gift St. John's has ever received and one of the largest given to a community hospital in California (Hennessy-Fiske, Los Angeles Times, 10/1).Â
Stanford Hospital & Clinics, Palo Alto
Stanford Hospital & Clinics recently invested $3 million on Hill-Rom lifting equipment to help patients get in and out of bed safely and prevent injuries among medical staff, the San Francisco Business Times reports.
Over the summer, Stanford installed eight overhead lifts, 24 mobile lifts, a lift solely for moving exceptionally overweight patients, and 26 air-powered transfer systems for moving patients from a bed to an X-ray table or other treatment sites.
In a statement, Joan Forte, Stanford Hospital & Clinics' interim associate director of nursing, said that the equipment "may eventually pay for itself" by reducing the number of workers' compensation claims due to heavy lifting and other expenses (Rauber, San Francisco Business Journal, 10/2).
UC-Irvine Medical Center, Orange
On Oct. 2, the California Nurses Association protested the closure of a 13-bed geriatric psychiatric unit at UC-Irvine Medical Center, the Register's "Healthy Living" reports.
The unit was closed because it was chronically underused, according to hospital spokesperson John Murray.
The geriatric psychiatric patients and their nurses are expected to be incorporated into the adult psychiatric ward at UCIMC (Perkes, "Healthy Living," Orange County Register, 10/2).
UC-San Francisco, Mission Bay
On Oct. 2, UC-San Francisco opened its new 42,000 square foot Orthopaedic Institute in Mission Bay, the Business Times reports.
The facility has 28 exam rooms, four operating rooms and two procedure rooms. The institute will provide outpatient treatment, research, and training in musculoskeletal conditions, injuries and sports medicine (Leuty, San Francisco Business Times, 10/2).
Valley Health System
On Tuesday, the board of directors for Valley Health System voted 6-1 in favor of the sale of its assets -- including Hemet Valley Medical Center and Menifee Valley Medical Center -- to Physicians for Healthy Hospitals, a group of 132 physicians who practice in the hospital district, the Riverside Press-Enterprise reports.
The $162 million sale covers the hospital district's debt to its bondholders and unsecured creditors, as well as the fair market value of the district's assets, officials said.
The terms of the agreement require PHH to retain almost all of the district's employees and services, including its hospitals' EDs.The sale has to be approved by district voters before it is finalized.Â An election will be held Dec. 15 (Hines, Riverside Press-Enterprise, 10/6). 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.