KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Hospitals: Calif. Bidding War Intensifies; Va. System Eyes Children’s Facility

The business of hospitals makes news in California -- where sides are engaged in a bidding war to buy a famed Santa Monica hospital; Virginia -- where pediatricians eye a new children's hospital; and Oregon, where lawmakers passed a new hospital tax.

Los Angeles Times: St. John's Bidding War Escalates
A high-stakes bidding war has erupted for St. John's Health Center, a storied Santa Monica hospital, with a local billionaire teaming up with the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles on an unsolicited offer. The latest bid, expected to be formally announced Wednesday, comes from former drug-company executive and health care entrepreneur Patrick Soon-Shiong, who said in a statement the bid has the support of the archdiocese (Terhune, 5/15).

Richmond Times-Dispatch: Pediatricians Work Toward Children’s Facility
In the past three years, Bon Secours Virginia Health System has boosted the number of pediatric specialists in its physician network to 77, probably double what it was before, as its builds its St. Mary’s for Kids brand. … The "hope" he refers to is the prospect that Richmond will one day have an independently operated, free-standing children’s hospital that would consolidate most pediatric care in the region under that facility’s umbrella. For such an entity to stand a chance of financial success in Richmond, the major hospital systems -- Bon Secours, VCU Health System and HCA -- would have to stop offering most pediatric services at their hospitals (Smith, 5/15).

Oregonian: Oregon House Passes Hospital Tax, But It’s Still Part Of Senate PERS Debate
The Oregon House approved a major piece of the Oregon Health Authority’s budget Tuesday, including provisions extending taxes on hospitals and long-term care facilities, but the bill appears destined to be held up by Senate Republicans. The two taxes were drawn into a larger debate over taxes and public pension spending last week after Republicans cast protest votes against House Bill 2216 in the Legislature’s budget committee (Gaston, 5/14).

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