Hospital News Roundup For May 11
Officials at Arrowhead Regional Medical Center said the hospital is establishing a $4.5 million cardiac surgery program to meet certification requirements for becoming a Level I trauma center, the Riverside Press-Enterprise reports.
The American College of Surgeons last year awarded Arrowhead a Level II trauma center designation.
Dev Gnanadev, Arrowhead's medical director, said officials hope to meet the Level I requirements before the hospital is surveyed again in 2009. The new cardiac program could be in operation by late 2007 or early 2008 (Gang, Riverside Press-Enterprise, 5/5).
Santa Ynez Valley Cottage Hospital has received a $1 million donation from the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians to help pay for an expansion and upgrades, the AP/Modesto Bee reports.
The donation is part of a $10 million fundraising drive to seismically retrofit the 20-bed, acute-care hospital. The hospital has raised about $4.8 million so far.
Cottage Health System, which owns the hospital, will provide the remaining $5 million needed to fund the construction project. The project also includes an emergency department expansion, radiology and laboratory consolidation and new surgical units (AP/Modesto Bee, 5/10).
The president of St. John's Regional Medical Center notified state officials that the hospital in August might have to close for about 10 days to eradicate mold, the Ventura County Star reports.
The Department of Health Services must approve temporary closures. The hospital within two weeks will decide whether to move forward with the shut down.
The temporary closure, set to begin Aug. 14, would be the first in Southern California since the Northridge earthquake in 1994.
Emergency department admissions at the hospital could close as early as Aug. 8. Officials are looking into relocating some emergency services to a temporary site (Kisken, Ventura County Star, 5/8).
The Sutter Gould Medical Foundation's Modesto medical complex is undergoing a $60.4 million construction project that will replace the existing health center, the Modesto Bee reports.
The new facility will be completed in two years and is expected to have about a third more space than the current center.
The new building is designed to accommodate Sutter Gould's electronic health records system (Carlson, Modesto Bee, 5/8).
Officials at UC-San Diego Medical Center announced that the hospital will not go ahead with a plan to transfer all acute-care services from its Hillcrest campus to its Thornton Hospital in La Jolla, the San Diego Union-Tribune reports. The medical center will maintain the two-hospital system, officials said.
UCSD officials in 2005 proposed closing the Hillcrest facility, which will be inoperable after 2030 because it does not meet state seismic requirements. The plan drew criticism from some lawmakers and advocates who felt the plan would limit access for the region's uninsured and underinsured population.
The UC regents next week are scheduled to consider a new proposal. The new plan would include:
- Spending $12 million on planning for constructing a new tower in La Jolla with 125 to 150 acute-care beds by 2014;
- Downsizing the Hillcrest facility from 386 beds to 250 beds in 2014; and
- Maintaining services at the Hillcrest facility until a new hospital is built elsewhere in the region (Clark, San Diego Union-Tribune, 5/10).