Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Healthcare District Takes San Leandro Hospital Case To State Supreme Court

Jan. 31, 2012 | The Eden Township Healthcare District waited until the last moment before formally petitioning the State Supreme Court Monday to settle its on-going legal fight with Sutter Health over ownership of San Leandro Hospital. At odds is whether two officials maintained conflicts of interest when negotiating the agreement at the center of the fight to save the community hospital

The supreme court is mandated to notify the parties of their interest in the case within the next 60-90 days. Either way, as the court of last resort, the state supreme court is the end of the legal line for the District and San Leandro Hospital.

Counsel for the District petitioned the state's high court on the legal question of whether Dr. Francisco Rico, a former District board member, and Eden Medical Center CEO George Bischalany maintained a conflict of interest under Government Code 1090 when they helped negotiate the 2008 memorandum of understanding. The agreement ultimately led to the $300 million reconstruction of Eden Medical Center in Castro Valley and the potential for San Leandro Hospital to be closed after two years.

Bischalaney, the petition notes held the position of CEO concurrently for both the District and the Sutter Health-run Eden Medical Center during the time of the negotiations.

"Although he had recused himself from participating on behalf of the District and acknowledged he was prohibited from attending closed-session meetings of the District board and other internal meetings where the negotiations were discussed and considered," notes the petition. "Mr. Bischalaney nonetheless was a significant participant in the District's negotiating effort."

The petition also states Bischalaney participated in internal, District-only strategy discussions and closed session meetings.

An anesthesiology practice including Rico as a shareholder held exclusive contracts for services at both San Leandro Hospital and Eden Medical Center, according to the petition. It states Rico had a financial interest in continuing acute care services at San Leandro Hospital or risk losing a quarter of its revenue and potentially the financial viability of the practice.

The District's allegation is a similar assertion that has failed in two lower courts. An Alameda County Superior Court judge ruled in favor of Sutter's claim of title to San Leandro Hospital in late 2010. The case was also denied late last year by the state court of appeals.

Despite the petition, sources with knowledge of Sutter's position tell The Citizen it has offered the District a settlement. Without knowledge of the details, it is likely to be less than palatable to the board or residents, many of whom, expect nothing less than the hospital continuing as a full-service hospital with 24-hour emergency room services.


Settlement? More like " back down or well sue your ass off when we win". More bully tactics by the wealthiest not for profit!!

Now all we can do is pray Supremes take the case. They should be a more left-leaning assembly of judges than the appeals bunch. You know, the 99%-ers like us. Let's see where the chips fall in 60-90 days.

Thanks for the update Steve, and what kind of settlement could they offer, the people are not interested in a settlement, they need their hospital and lets face it the new Eden Hospital will not be able to handle the patient load if SLH should be closed, and the people would be diverted to Highland which is exactly what Sutter wants, they do not want Medicare,Medicaid, or poorly insured or non insured patients going to their new hospital, how will they be able to show a profit in their non-profit hospital. I believe once the high court starts reading all of the documents including those by the States Attorney General, and Senator Corbett they can only find in the districts favor, it is so obvious especially in Bischalaney case. I know it will break TS's heart but oh well, he turned his back on the people who put him in office and now he is trying to get even by wanting them to lose their hospital and ER, so TS just get over it you will never be Mayor again. John Kalafatich (PAPA JOHN )

The rumor around the hospital is that The District is NOT appealing to the Supreme Court. Steven, could you please comment on the veracity of your information? Thanks.

No, they have submitted the apeal, but sutter is "negotiating" with the district to settle outside of court.

neotiations have been going on for months.

Like said earlier, sutter's version of negotiating is making threats to scare the district from going to the supreme court. What a great organization

I say it again and again: Sutter needs SLH to stay in business to filter out all the non-paying patients Sutter wants no part of "occupying" their wonderful Eden Med Center. Sutter would be stupid to close SLH because those patients will all go to the next geographically closest facility, that being EMC 6 miles away, the very next day SLH closes its ER. Pat, EMC is listed in the yellow pages! You built it, they will find it, and they will come.

Hi one and all, hope to see all of you next wednesday Feb.8, at 6 pm at the San Leandro Community Senior Center. ETHD is sponsoring a public hearing and will be discussing the potential acquisition of St.Rose Hospital, and also an update on the lawsuit with Sutter Health, so how about all of you who are anonymous showing up for the hearing I know I will be there and maybe we can have a discussion face to face. John Kalafatich ( PAPA JOHN )

SLH only chance of a short future will be if the supreme court hears the case. Most likely the district will lose but it can give the hospital anywhere from 1 to 3 years of more time while the case is being heard.

Well maybe you are right, but how many lives do you think can be saved in 1 to 3 years, I believe the fight is worth those lives, and I applaud the ETHD board for their efforts to give the people the Hospital ER they so need and deserve. So to the previous anonymous, you to can be assured of having a hospital to come to because I feel that once the court has a chnce to not only listen to verbal arguments but reads all of the documentation that will be presented they will prove the conflict of interest as claimed, and one would wonder why Sutter would want to negotiate with ETHD since they had won the previous cases, could they now fear that the higher court would rule against them, here again I think that is the case, why would someone who had won twice want to negotiate a settlement, they dont sound to confident in winning this one do they. Well again I say come Wednesday night to the Senior Center and hear the truth. John Kalafatich ( PAPA JOHN )

Maybe our mayor can help us out in some sort of legal way, as he only moon lights as our successful mayor. His real job is as a lawyer.

It's like beating a horse after its died. So many fools living in san leandro, working at san leandro hospital. It's just confounding.

We all wish and pray that the Supreme Court will
hear the case . ETHD doesn't give up because they really believe that there was a conflict of interest. There really was , but sometimes it is hard to prove because money works. If the Supreme court hears the case and if ETHD wins ( although
it is a very slim chance , it is like passing through the eye of a needle ) those involved in the conflict of interest would be "dead meat" that is why they want to settle !!! LOL Anonymous LOL

This is in reply to anonymous who thinks we who live in and work at SLH are fools, you seem to be easily confounded, since our main wish and goal is to be here when those who are so easily confounded realize that we have saved their and many other peoples lives and the only way to do that is to keep the hospital and the ER open, I would rather whip a dead horse than gamble with people lives and not try and keep the hospital open, I personally may never be the one who may save a life but the staff of SLH have been the ones who have saved and will continue to save the lives of people who have an ER and acute care hospital to go to when they need it, and not take the chance of going to another facility farther away when minutes may mean living or dying, so anonymous it seems like the one doing the beating is not us fools here in SL and SLH, but you who is doing the beating and not of a dead horse but the people who live in and around SL. John Kalafatich ( PAPA JOHN )

How a fool speaks:

"This is in reply to anonymous who thinks we who live in and work at SLH are fools, you seem to be easily confounded, since our main wish and goal is to be here when those who are so easily confounded realize that we have saved their and many other peoples lives..."

Beating a dead horse !!! I think you work for Eden
that is why you hate us. Anonymous LOL

You have a heart attack or stroke. You live in San Leandro. An ambulance shows up at your door. Do you want to go to the nearest hospital with the best survival rates in the State? What is this discussion about?

"best survival rates in the state" is an outrageous lie. Tell the truth. SLH sucks. If a person goes to SLH based on this bull, you have participated in murder.

That's actualy a fact not opinion.... They have the best survival rate

You are talking about eden's health scores and quality numbers. STOP.

I don't know about the positive health scores being from Eden. All I hear is complaints from people who go to Eden and say how rude the staff is and how dirty and run down the place is. Also, wait times in Emergency are already ridiculous so I can't imagine what it will be like when SLH closes. Get ready to open your doors wide for the dregs of society Eden.

I find it interesting that you call SLH patients "the dregs of society". With that attitude it's no surprise that SLH's care sucks.

And Eden is not much better. I'd go to CPMC, Alta Bates or Stanford.

When a place is busy or staff are overworked , it does not matter where you go , the service is the same . When an emergency strikes ( heart attack/stroke )you can't drive to stanford ,CPMC or Alta Bates , you will for sure die on the way.
Anonymous LOL

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