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Hospital sale approved with conditions

The state Attorney General has conditionally approved the sale of South Coast Medical Center to Mission Regional Hospital Medical Center.

“On Tuesday, June 9, we received notice that the California State Attorney General conditionally approved the transaction to purchase South Coast Medical Center,” said Mission spokeswoman Kelsey Martinez. “We are currently reviewing the conditions and remain optimistic about completing the transaction.”

Deputy Attorney General Wendi Horwitz sent a letter to Latham & Watkins, attorneys representing Mission Hospital, detailing conditions of the sale.

The conditions include a provision that the hospital be maintained through the end of 2012, no matter what happens regarding seismic retrofitting requirements by the state.

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Among the conditions:

 24-hour emergency services with 12 beds as currently licensed;

 Psychiatric services for “involuntary” patients with a minimum of 18 beds as currently licensed;

 Intensive care services with four beds (less than the hospital now has).

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Other requirements:

 A minimum $5 million investment in capital improvements and equipment over three years, with annual reports to the attorney general’s office detailing the expenditures;

 $1.8 million to be transferred by July 31 to the Irvine Health Foundation to establish a fund for cancer and cancer related services to the hospital’s service area;

 All remaining restricted funds in the now-dissolved South Coast Medical Center Foundation will be transferred by July 31 to the Irvine Health Foundation to be used at the Laguna Beach hospital;

 For five years after the purchase, Mission is required to provide community benefit services at the hospital at an annual cost of $418,400, and if that amount is not spent, the amount left over will be donated to the Laguna Beach Community Clinic.

Mission Hospital officials have not yet made a decision on whether to accept the conditions.

The documents can be found on the attorney general’s website, //ag.ca.gov/charities.



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