SAN BERNARDINO: County Hospital Strives for New, Improved Image
San Bernardino County's new Arrowhead Regional Medical Center opens tomorrow, and administrators are attempting to change the hospital's image as a dingy, understaffed facility of last resort. Director Charles Jervis said the county decided to replace the 298-bed hospital 10 years ago rather than retrofit it for earthquake safety. The new $470 million, Arrowhead is being equipped with "the latest technology." The staff is also taking classes in charm and hospitality, hoping to woo insured and "top- dollar 'private pay'" patients. "We were a hospital of last resort, but now we want to be a hospital of first choice," said Medical Director Dr. Carl Jansen. Jervis said Arrowhead "will aggressively market itself among patients, physician organizations and HMOs and is expected to draw patients from other hospitals in the area." He said, "Patients will feel better about this hospital than the old one. It doesn't give the impression of being a county facility. It's like walking into a new, private hospital." Sixty percent of the hospital's revenue will come from Medi-Cal, 25% from the county's operating budget, 10% from Medicare and 5% from private customers, according to Jansen (Gorman, Los Angeles Times, 3/27).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.