Daughters of Charity Acquire Seven State Hospitals
The Daughters of Charity order of Catholic nuns has assumed control of operations at Robert F. Kennedy Medical Center, a former Catholic Healthcare West facility, and six other state hospitals, the Torrance Daily Breeze reports. The order faces "several challenges" at the facilities, including increased numbers of uninsured patients and "extensive" seismic upgrades required by 2008. According to the Daily Breeze, "strict seismic safety codes" have "pushed" hospitals to "make the choice between closure and multimillion dollar renovation." RFK Medical Center President and CEO Peter Aprato said that the shift in ownership will allow the hospital to spend $34 million for renovations. RFK Medical Center will construct a new laboratory and pharmacy and "expand and upgrade" the facility's maternity ward, Aprato said. Meanwhile, technical workers at Lynwood's St. Francis Medical Center, another former CHW hospital acquired by the Daughters, "hope" that the shift in ownership will allow their union, Service Employees International Union Local 399, to sign a contract with the hospital and lead to a "breakthrough" on unresolved issues of job security and wages. "I think the employees all hope that the Daughters are much more responsive than CHW has been," union president David Bullock said (Peterson, Torrance Daily Breeze, 1/31).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.