Monrovia Community Hospital Shuts Doors Because of Insufficient Funds To Pay Employees
Monrovia Community Hospital closed on Wednesday and evacuated all patients after being unable to finance operations or pay employees, the Pasadena Star-News reports. However, Duane VanDyke, the "apparent owner" of the hospital, said the 49-bed facility was not closed and patients should continue to make appointments, according to the Star-News. Employees said the dispute stems from an ongoing "struggle between VanDyke and [CEO Dorothy] Bitter for control of the hospital," the Star-News reports. Bitter works for a Pomona-based management company hired by Van Dyke earlier this year to improve the hospital's financial performance and stabilize operations. Employees said the hospital has seen a "revolving door of management companies" in the past year and was in "financial straits when Van Dyke purchased it in June 2003," the Star-News reports. Dina Garrows, Monrovia Community's chief operating officer, said that employees had been told the management company assumed ownership of 70% of the hospital when its contract began, but Van Dyke says he still owns 100% of the hospital. Some employees said that their last two paychecks were denied because of insufficient funds, causing Bitter to surrender the hospital's license to the state. The Health and Human Services Agency subsequently ordered that all patients be evacuated. According to the Star-News, Bitter on Wednesday posted several signs saying the hospital was closed, but they were removed. VanDyke said he is dismissing Bitter and her management team and would try to find a new management company to operate the facility. However, it remains unclear if VanDyke has the authority to do that (Maddaus, Pasadena Star-News, 5/26).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.