SEBASTOPOL – Palm Drive Hospital will be managed by Brentwood, Tenn.-based Brim Healthcare Inc. for the next three years, following board approval to extend a 120-day trial contract.

The hospital still completing final bankruptcy proceedings hired the company in August following the removal of Chief Executive James Russell. Directors voted unanimously Monday to end the trial period with Brim early and sign an extended contract, which also sets in motion a search for a permanent chief executive officer.

“This is good news for all of us. The hospital will continue to benefit from the array of services Brim offers, and the momentum we are building to improve our policies, practices and services will not be lost,” said Neil Todhunter, who was installed by Brim as interim chief executive officer.

The hospital will pay Brim about $750,000 for the entire three-year term, plus salary for the chief executive to be determined, according to a release sent Thursday evening.

Brim is a privately held management and consulting services firm that’s been in operation for 40 years and currently contracts with 38 acute-care hospitals in 18 states.