County Supervisor Yvonne B. Burke Tuesday received approval from the Board of Supervisors to direct the countys executive officer, William Fujioka, to report back on the stalled negotiations with Pacific Hospital in Long Beach at the boards next meeting.
After expressing the desire to reopen Martin Luther King (King Harbor) Hospital, Pacific Hospital abruptly pulled out of the negotiations last week. With the intense scrutiny that any potential operator will face in this process, Im not surprised by Pacific Hospitals hesitancy to move forward in the negotiations, Burke said. I want to assure residents of the Second District that I remain fully committed to re-opening the facility as a full service hospital to meet the medical needs of the undeserved community.
County officials have been under pressure to reopen King-Harbor, formerly known as Martin Luther King-Drew Medical Center, as a full-service hospital since emergency and inpatient services were halted last August.
King-Drew failed an inspection given by the U. S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and was about to lose its federal funding.
One of the criticisms leveled at the Pacific management team was whether the healthcare professionals had the experience to run a large hospital like King-Harbor.
Burke said that she will try to work with Fujioka to bring the Pacific team back to the negotiating table, but conceded she did not know of a way to alleviate the intense public scrutiny.