Construction continues to progress at the site of Sutter Health's forthcoming $284 million new hospital, next to the Wells Fargo Center for the Arts in Northern Santa Rosa, that will replace its aging, seismically unfit Chanate facility.

In late January, the first signs of an actual building emerged from the ground, as steel frames that will house the west wing of the hospital were erected.  Also in January, the old telephone polls on Mark West Springs Road were removed, and work has begun on the building of a new bus stop in front of the new hospital.

[caption id="attachment_49266" align="alignright" width="350" caption="The new Sutter Medical Center of Santa Rosa is on target to be completed in 2014."][/caption]

Sutter said construction is on time and continues to be on pace for completion in fall 2014. From March through June of this year, construction on the foundation of the hospital's east wing will take place. In April, construction on the hospital's central utility plant will begin, and all other site work will resume through the dry season. That will include the completion of the Mark West Springs Road widening, as well as an expanded freeway off ramp, building of parking lots and on site roads. From June through December, the exterior wall framing, roofing and enclosure of the building will take place.

The new hospital will have 82 beds with the possibility of a 27-bed expansion and the site will total more than 316,000 square feet across 25 acres. It will include 80,000 square feet of medical office buildings.***

Queen of the Valley Medical Center in Napa announced the appointment of Vincent Morgese as the hospital's executive vice president, chief operating officer and chief medical officer.

Dr. Morgese has been serving in this role on an interim basis since July of last year. He is responsible for the efficiency of operations at the 191-bed hospital and oversees all medical programs and quality initiatives. He will also work closely with physicians and staff to oversee the following departments: medical staff services, quality/performance improvement, compliance, health information services, clinical information services, IT, lab services, radiology and construction.

Dr. Morgese works closely with medical leadership throughout St. Joseph Health System, Queen of the Valley's parent company, as a participant in the health system's Physician Leadership Council. He is a neurosurgeon who has been practicing in the Napa Valley since 1993. He joined Queen of the Valley in 2005 as chief medical officer.***

Clinic Ole in Napa recently celebrated an open house for its newest location on Old Sonoma Road at the county Health and Human Services campus.

The new location, a former administration office for HHS, will serve as a primary care center for its mental health and substance abuse patients, which in turn will free up space at the clinic's main location, officials said. By having the new location on the site of county health services, the patients can be steered toward other county services, should they need them.  The new satellite location will house one family physician and one nurse practitioner

Clinic Ole anticipates about 400 such patients at the new site — a conservative estimate based on how many mental health and substance abuse patients said they didn’t have any primary care provider. County health hopes to refer five to 10 new patients to the clinic per week; services at the new clinic will be referral only from Napa County's mental health and substance abuse programs, as well as the Adult Resource Center. ***

The Marin County Board of  Supervisors approved a contract of more than $500,000 to Homeward Bound, which will provide housing and case management services for mentally ill homeless people in Marin.

The program is meant to reduce or prevent homelessness by assisting individuals in accessing housing.

Another contract was  approved for the nonprofit Community Action Marin for nearly $385,000 to provide mental health services for children and adults. The contract will allow the nonprofit to expand services to Spanish-speaking populations***

Tim McDonald of Cloverdale was recently elected to the board of directors at Alexander Valley Healthcare, formerly known as  Alexander Valley Regional Medical Center. Mr. McDonald previously worked as a senor executive in HR at Watson Pharmaceuticals, PriceWaterhouse, Paramount Pictures and MTV.

Alexander Valley Healthcare is Sonoma County's only federally designated Rural Health Center, serving some 7,000 residents of Cloverdale and Geyserville.  It serves as a safety net, with uninsured visits topping 1,600 last year, amounting to $200,000 in uncompensated care. Total patient visits topped 15,000. The heath center estimates it will treat up to 2,000 additional uninsured residents as a result of the federal health overhaul.***

St. Helena Hospital Clear Lake, formally known as Red Bud Community Hospital, received a $25,000 donation from Rotary Club of Clearlake.

The money will go toward renovations at the hospital's emergency room, which is undergoing a $12.1 million renovation and upgrade. St. Helena Clear Lake is the sister hospital of St. Helena Hospital in Napa County and is owned by Adventist Health, which provided the first $9 million toward the emergency department upgrade. The additional $3 million is being raised by the hospital from the community.

The 25-bed, acute-care hospital will add five “state-of-the-art” patient monitoring rooms, increasing the number of private rooms to 12 from seven at the facility that serves South Lake County. All told, the department will expand by more than 4,100 square feet.

Two of the new rooms will serve trauma patients, and the hospital may explore becoming a trauma center sometime in the future, a spokeswoman said....Submit items for this column to Dan Verel, dverel@busjrnl.com, 707-521-4257.