Palm Drive accepts emergency loan, seeks 'reimagine' proposals

SEBASTOPOL -- Cash-strapped Palm Drive Hospital is set to get an advance from the county of Sonoma on forthcoming funds in order to continue operations at least until the planned suspension of operations at the end of this month, and ideas to "reimagine" and "reinvent" the rural institution are being sought, thanks to new actions by the board overseeing the hospital.Other storiesPalm Drive counting down days to probable closure

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April 7, 2014Nurses union, advocates protest potential Palm Drive closure

April 5, 2014Financial stress at Palm Drive detailed

April 4, 2014District declares Palm Drive ‘fiscal emergency’

April 1, 2014

The board of directors of Palm Drive Healthcare District at its Friday afternoon special meeting elected to accept an emergency bridge loan of up to $1.8 million from the county of Sonoma, according to an announcement. It's an early payment of funding already slated for the hospital that, due to the acute financial situation, is being released months ahead of schedule.

"This loan is a critical step for Palm Drive to safely initiate a termination of acute and inpatient care," said Chris Dawson, chairman. "Today, the hospital is on a cash-on-delivery basis for critical inventory, including blood from the blood bank. We need to assure patient safety as we terminate certain services at the hospital. Only with the county’s help are we able to do that."

The termination of services is necessary because the hospital is no longer financially solvent, according to the board. "Every effort that has been taken to improve revenue cycle management, reduce costs, stabilize operations and right-size staffing has been unable to counter the lower than expected patient census, related revenues and expanding competition mere miles away," the board said.

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