Catholic Healthcare West, already in the midst of a major corporate restructuring, may lose one of its religious sponsors, Modern Healthcare has learned.
The Daughters of Charity, West Province, in Los Altos, Calif., wants to leave San Francisco-based CHW and create a new healthcare system with its seven California hospitals.
A top Daughters official said the sponsor's desire to leave is unrelated to the operational and legal problems the system has experienced (See related story, p. 13). The 48-hospital system, which announced a major corporate overhaul in February, is working to reverse four years of operational losses totaling more than $878 million.
"We feel we can serve our mission by being part of our own system," said Robert Issai, chief financial officer of the Daughters, West Province. The Daughters want to "have a simpler structure," he said.
The ongoing restructuring at CHW, which includes eliminating the system's regional structure, is expected to save the system $100 million annually (Feb. 12, p. 4). In the first three months of this year, CHW posted an operating profit of $5 million, its best performance since 1997, said Charles Francis, CHW's senior vice president of strategy and business development.
The Daughters are one of nine religious communities that sponsor CHW.
"The feeling is, in terms of implementing their own healing ministry, having their own system is more effective," Francis said.
The Daughters' wish to leave CHW still must be approved by the CHW board of directors, and the exit from CHW could take at least a year.
Francis said none of the other sponsoring ministries are considering breaking away from CHW. The Daughters don't plan to join another health system, Issai said.
The Daughters' hospitals, in both Northern and Southern California, were part of the Daughters of Charity National Health System-West before that system merged with CHW in 1995.
The facilities are: 283-bed O'Connor Hospital, San Jose; 255-bed Seton Medical Center, Daly City; 121-bed Seton Medical Center Coastside, Moss Beach; 195-bed Robert F. Kennedy Medical Center, Hawthorne; 414-bed St. Francis Medical Center, Lynwood; 93-bed Saint Louise Regional Hospital, Gilroy; and 350-bed St. Vincent Medical Center, Los Angeles.
-With Deanna Bellandi