GAINESVILLE, Fla.-Shands Hospital plans to restructure its facility to create a 169-bed integrated children's unit within the 576-bed public facility. The remodeling is expected to be completed over the next 12 months and cost less than $1.2 million, said Richard Bucciarelli, M.D., chairman of Shand's pediatric department. The remodeling will include increasing the number of private pediatric rooms to an unspecified number and relocating specialty children's clinics, Bucciarelli said. "We are creating a continuum of care that links the hospital with the clinics to coordinate discharges better," he said. "From a nursing standpoint, we are clustering children by disease and age because it makes sense to have nurses skilled in specific functions in those areas." Benefits include an estimated 10% increase in admissions to more than 9,000, and efficiency gains, Bucciarelli said. No cost savings estimate was available.
JOHNSON CITY, Tenn.-Johnson City Medical Center has proposed a $1.5 million settlement for 1,400 people who were allegedly overcharged for cancer treatments. Circuit Court Judge Thomas Seeley has scheduled a June 28 hearing in Johnson City Law Court to hear comments on the settlement in the class-action case. Attorneys' fees also must be decided. The plaintiffs received outpatient radiation therapy at the hospital between January 1990 and March 1993. They will each get about $200, according to plaintiffs' attorney Tom Jessee. He said the settlement allows additional reimbursement to plaintiffs who can show they paid more than $200 out of their own pockets. Hospital attorney Frank Anderson said the hospital continues to maintain that it did nothing wrong but settled to avoid further legal costs. The lawsuit was filed after published reports in 1993 that the hospital's charges for cancer treatment were up to three times higher than those of other hospitals in northeast Tennessee.-Associated Press