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North Bay Business Journal

Monday, December 19, 2011, 6:00 am

Health Care: BloodSource leases space for permanent facility

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    Dan Verel, Business Journal Staff ReporterBloodSource, a Sacramento area-based blood supplier of hospitals in Central and Northern California, has leased nearly 7,200 square feet at 3505 Industrial Drive in Santa Rosa, which will be the company’s permanent location for Sonoma County.

    The not-for-profit organizations’ move into Santa Rosa comes just months after San Francisco-based Blood Centers of the Pacific absorbed longtime regional provider Blood Bank of the Redwoods, becoming the area’s predominant blood bank.

    BloodSource, based in Mather, is relatively new to Sonoma County, with its next closest location in Solano County. In July, the company announced its presence in the region by setting up mobile blood donation centers around Santa Rosa while it sought a permanent location. It was around the same time Blood Centers of the Pacific finalized the merger with Blood Bank of the Redwoods. BloodSource said at the time that it would be fully operational in Santa Rosa by mid-December.

    Devon Bazzano, a longtime Sonoma County resident who previously worked for Blood Bank of the Redwoods, will direct operations for BloodSource in Santa Rosa. Initially, the blood bank will have seven full-time employees, including herself, and will be open on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, while on Tuesdays and Thursdays it will collect blood by way of its mobile operation, Ms. Bazzano said.

    “I’m beyond excited to introduce BloodSource again to Santa Rosa and the county,” Ms. Bazzano said. ” It’s exciting to open a permanent location.”

    ***

    OffSiteCare, a telemedicine company founded by Sebastopol physician Dr. James Gude, has opened a central hub in San Francisco, where it it intends to provide nighttime hospitalist and specialist consultations for seven Northern California hospitals, including several in the North Bay, the company said.

    By opening the San Francisco hub, OffSiteCare is “leveling the playing field” by extending advanced technologies to rural hospitals from major medical facilities, the company said.

    Dr. Gude, a professor of medicine at University of California, San Francisco who practices at Palm Drive Hospital in Sebastopol, founded OffSiteCare in 2007 as a means of sharing complicated procedures with more remote hospitals that may lack certain specialists needed for complex surgeries.

    “By providing medical consultation and care from our hub in San Francisco, we’ve created a cost-effective model that will give rural hospitals access to key medical services that used to be beyond their physical and economic outreach,” Dr. Gude said.

    OffSiteCare provides continuing medical education credits for physicians and nurses in remote sites,  including: Frank Howard Memorial in Willits; St. Helena Hospital Clear Lake in Lake County; Mendocino Coast Hospital in Fort Bragg; Healdsburg District Hospital; Redwood Memorial in Fortuna; Ukiah Valley Medical Center; and Palm Drive.

    The company has also taken its telemedicine overseas to include locations in Haiti and Africa and contracts with Dr. Richard Lapin, who recently emigrated to Israel  from California. The time difference enables the company to have a physician constantly monitoring developments, day and night, at its rural and remote locations. 

    “By working with physicians across the globe, we’re creating a new vision of rural care,” Dr. Gude said.

    ***

    Daymon Doss, the current executive director of the Northern California Health Care Authority and former Petaluma Healthcare District CEO, has taken a three-month consulting job as interim executive director of the Mt. Diablo Health Care District in eastern Contra Costa County. The district includes about 200,000 residents.

    Mr. Doss said the independent contractor position will not have any impact on his duties with the Health Care Authority, also known as the JPA, which is a part-time job itself. The Mt. Diablo district used to oversee operations at a hospital on Concord, but voters turned over control of the hospital to the John Muir Health system in 1996. It currently  does not operate a hospital or any other health facilities and is facing a dissolution vote. It collects about $240,000 a year in property taxes.

    Mr. Doss said the Northern California Health Care Authority will continue to seek ways for its members — the Palm Drive Healthcare District, Northern Sonoma County Health Care District, Sonoma Valley Health Care District, Mendocino Coast Healthcare District, and South Humboldt Community Healthcare District — to collaborate on physician recruitment and other shared services that help drive down costs.

    ***

    Marin Commuinty Clinics was awarded $460,000 by the Marin County  Board of Supervisors to help adults suffering from the onset of serious psychiatric illness, along with other mental health services.

    ***

    Napa County has selected San Diego-based McAlister Institute to operate a short-term residential and detox center on the campus of Napa State Hospital.

    Jeanne McAlister, founder and CEO of McAlister Institute, said the organization’s Napa County programs will offer short term residential treatment for people diagnosed with substance abuse or chemical dependency disorders. The minimum capacity of these services will be 30 beds, of which 10 will be devoted to social-model detoxification services and 20 beds for short-term residential treatment services.  The Napa County short-term residential program also offers programs in Spanish.

    Presently, McAlister Institute serves more than 2,500 men, women, children and teens each month in San Diego County with inpatient and outpatient services and vocational training.

    Submit items for this column to dverel@busjrnl.com or 707-521-4257.

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