Los Angeles County health officials recommended eliminating several key services at troubled Martin Luther King/Drew Medical Center, moves that essentially would reduce the 249-bed academic medical center to a small community hospital. Under the proposal, King/Drew would no longer offer such services as pediatrics, obstetrics and neonatology, and its trauma center, shuttered last fall, would remain closed for the foreseeable future. Instead, the hospital would expand certain outpatient services, including those for cancer diagnosis, diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure. It would continue to train physicians to be specialists but would accept fewer trainees and offer fewer programs. The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors is scheduled to consider the plan Aug. 16. The proposal is the latest of an array of efforts to fix the hospital, which has lost its national accreditation and been threatened with loss of Medicare and Medicaid eligibility because of a series of lapses in patient care. -- by Laura B. Benko
L.A. County to consider limiting services at King/Drew
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