Millions of dollars to deal with long-term and holistic health, fixes to cramped and aged facilities and expanded partnerships in the Riverside area are among the commitments the new owners of Parkview Community Hospital Medical Center are making as they take over a facility that had been an independent nonprofit for 60 years.
AHMC Healthcare bought Parkview in July 2018, but the deal wasn’t official until the California Attorney General approved it and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development approved the transfer of two outstanding loans that had been previously obtained by Parkview, according to hospital officials.
Now the hospital will move toward its new goals, which center around “population health,” said David Batista, executive vice president of AHMC HealthCare.
“Population health involves looking at a community and focusing on keeping people healthy,” Batista said. “The responsibility now, more and more, is to look at health disparities and do education, partner with vendors and community members.”
For instance, many hospital visits occur because people don’t comply with medical orders or can’t afford healthy behaviors, problems that can more affordably be fixed before patients show up in an emergency room, Batista said.
At the same time, the hospital group is committed to maintaining Parkview as an acute-care hospital with a 24-hour emergency department, which includes expanding the emergency department from 13 to 41 beds. That expansion should be done in August, he said.
AHMC will also maintain charitable giving at a similar level to where it was before the purchase, and appoint a hospital community advisory board that includes community residents and medical staff members, along with investing a minimum of $25 million in the hospital over the next seven years and $10 million to the Parkview Legacy Foundation, Batista said.
Founded in 2004, AHMC is a for-profit group that runs hospitals in Los Angeles County and Anaheim, along with post-acute facilities, a Medicare Advantage HMO and a medical school, according to a news release.
The deal became effective Monday, July 1.
More than 500 employees at Parkview ratified their first contract with the hospital in 2017, nearly four years after they first voted to unionize. No changes are expected with regard to the union, Batista said.
In 2015, state health officials found two problems for the hospital to correct, though they did not find Parkview at fault for an incident in which maggots were found on a patient.
In 2002, the hospital filed for bankruptcy protection, a result of six years of losses compounded by problems with federal regulators. It emerged from bankruptcy the following year.
“This facility, in particular, has struggled a little bit financially and not been able to build programs when you should build programs,” Batista said. “… We’ve picked up a lot of challenged facilities and gotten them to thrive, and the way we’ve done that is through partnerships. That’s what we will do here.”
Batista declined to give a specific sale price.