San Francisco Officials Ask Lockyer to Block St. Luke’s/Sutter Merger
A group of San Francisco officials yesterday urged state Attorney General Bill Lockyer (D) to block the proposed merger between Sutter Health and St. Luke's Hospital, saying it could reduce the "level of charity care" currently provided at St. Luke's, the San Francisco Chronicle reports. San Francisco Supervisor Tom Ammiano said, "One is struck by the level of charity care and the egalitarian level of emergency care (at St. Luke's). That is a noble calling. I'm not hearing that from Sutter." Officials from St. Luke's and Sutter said that they are "committed to supporting the hospital's historic level of charity care." Lockyer, who by law must approve all hospital mergers, is not expected to make a decision "for months" (San Francisco Chronicle, 4/17). In February, the San Francisco Health Commission also stated its concern that the merger would lead to a decline in charity care. However, St. Luke's officials have said that without the merger, the financially struggling hospital will "almost certainly" be forced to close (California Healthline, 2/7).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.