Sonoma Valley Hospital plans link with UCSF Health

Sonoma Valley Hospital (Robbi Pengelly / Sonoma Index-Tribune)


Sonoma Valley Hospital, a 75-bed facility in Sonoma, plans to affiliate with UCSF Health, which includes UCSF Medical Center, UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals and additional affiliates throughout the Bay Area.

According to the hospital’s announcement, its board Thursday reviewed the agreement and accepted it in principle. Now it would need to be approved by the UCSF Health board.

Sonoma hospital CEO Kelly Mather said competition and the continuous need for cost-containment have increased in the hospital industry.

“For those reasons, we have been looking to align with a larger hospital,” she said.

These are among Sonoma Valley Hospital’s stated goals for the affiliation:

• Combination of expertise and resources to share best practices and collectively enhance the quality of local services.

• Coordination of out-of-area transport of sick patients.

• Transfer of patients back to Sonoma Valley for less-intensive care.

A personnel change in the proposed agreement is a new medical director for the hospital, replacing Robbie Cohen, M.D., who recently retired.

In 2015, Sonoma Valley Hospital joined Canopy Health, a network of independent hospitals and physicians started by UCSF Health, John Muir Health System and three physician networks (Hill Physicians Medical Group, John Muir PA and Meritage Medical Network) that now spans the greater Bay Area.

In the past few years, UCSF Health has affiliated with a number of Bay Area providers and health systems, including Children’s Hospital Oakland (now UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland), John Muir Health, Dignity Health Bay Area, Washington Hospital Healthcare System, Golden Gate Urgent Care and Hospice by the Bay.