CONTRA COSTA COUNTY: Agency Will Study Emergency Care Move
Contra Costa County health officials are scheduled to begin assessing how county residents could be affected by the pending transfer of emergency care facilities from Pinole-based Doctors Medical Center to its San Pablo hospital, the Contra Costa Times reports. The Emergency Medical Services Agency will head the probe and has tentatively scheduled public forums regarding the issue on Dec. 16 and Jan. 6. As part of the evaluation, county officials hope to determine whether the hospital has taken the necessary steps to ensure adequate emergency care for the county's residents. Under guidelines approved by the Board of Supervisors, Doctors Medical Center will transfer intensive care, acute medical services and emergency care in March to its San Pablo facility, which has already been expanded to accommodate the shift. In case of a large-scale emergency, the Pinole facility will keep its emergency care license until the expansion is complete. The assessment will be submitted to the state Department of Health Services for final approval. Supervisor Donna Gerber said she hoped the state would take a "very close look" at the report, as the move has serious repercussions for the county's residents (McMillan, 12/8).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.