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“It’s beyond comprehension how the Mercury News could advocate for the potential closure of six vital community hospitals in California and the loss of pension and health benefits of 16,000 union and non-union workers. But that is essentially what it called for in its ill-considered editorial urging the state Attorney General to reject the sale of Daughters of Charity Health System (DCHS) to Prime Healthcare.

The Daughters of Charity hospitals — including O’Connor Hospital in San Jose and Saint Louise Regional Hospital in Gilroy — are losing $10 million a month and are in very real danger of shutting down or filing for bankruptcy. With cash reserves running low, time is of the essence. Rejection of the sale by Attorney General Kamala Harris would accelerate the financial crisis and eventual demise of these facilities.

This is not an empty threat. In January 2014, the DCHS board of directors responded to this severe financial distress and launched an exhaustive search for a buyer with the experience and financial wherewithal to nurse the hospitals back to health.

More than 130 health systems expressed initial interest, and from there the choices were whittled to four finalists. In the end, Prime Healthcare was far and away the best candidate, meeting or exceeding all the criteria established by the board. Prime Healthcare will keep the hospitals open, continue the charity care mission, honor all union contracts and invest $150 million in capital improvements over the next three years.”

To go to the entire San Jose Mercury News article, click this link