CYPRESS, Calif.-Nashville, Tenn.-based OrNda HealthCorp has formed a strategic alliance in California's Central Coast area among two of its hospitals, an HMO, a large teaching and research hospital, and more than 300 physicians. The integrated delivery system will serve 40,000 enrollees of Cypress-based PacifiCare of California, including those in its Medicare-risk HMO. The alliance includes Santa Barbara-based Monarch Health Systems, a physician organization; 332-bed Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital in Santa Barbara; and two OrNda hospitals-147-bed French Hospital Medical Center in San Luis Obispo and 70-bed Valley Community Hospital in Santa Maria. Plans call for the partners to integrate as many administrative functions as possible to streamline processes such as care authorization and case management. An eventual goal is lower costs for PacifiCare enrollees.
WAIMEA, Hawaii-The new $30 million North Hawaii Community Hospital is scheduled to open in April. Spokeswoman Susan Pueschel said the 50-bed hospital is 95% complete. The facility will serve the Waimea and Kohala areas and the Hamakua Coast. The private hospital, built with half state and half private funds, will be governed by a community board of directors. It will be managed by Adventist Health System, which also owns and operates Castle Medical Center in Kailua, Oahu. The facility includes such innovations as larger-than-normal rooms for visits by large families and sliding glass doors on all rooms to provide fresh air and a pleasant outdoor view. Pueschel said the hospital will have a chef as well as a dietician. She also said the hospital will allow consulting by licensed nonmedical practitioners such as chiropractors, naturopaths, acupuncturists, massage therapists and mental health providers. A recent $1 million donation from the Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation leaves hospital leaders with just $2 million needed for the project.-Associated Press
SUN CITY, Ariz.-Sun Health Corp. said it formed a physician-hospital organization called Sun Health Providers. SHP includes 31 primary-care physicians and 70 specialists. Sun Health, a Sun City-based system, owns 50% of the PHO, and member physicians own the remaining 50%, said Keith Dines, Sun Health's vice president of business and strategic development. Total capitalization for the start-up was $135,000, he said. SHP will begin providing care to enrollees of FHP International health plans April 1 and plans to announce agreements with other managed-care companies during the next few months. Joseph Johnson, M.D., will serve as chairman of SHP's board of directors, and Dines will serve as president. Sun Health, a not-for-profit network, comprises 241-bed Del E. Webb Memorial Hospital and 317-bed Walter O. Boswell Memorial Hospital.