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Community Digest

Bellflower : Union Protests Closure of Kaiser Night Walk-In Clinic

February 20, 1992

About 30 hospital union members last week protested the closure of an evening walk-in clinic at Kaiser Permanente's Bellflower hospital, urging that the community needs the services offered by the only such clinic in the area.

Hospital officials had announced that walk-in services for children and adults that had been available up to 10:30 p.m. on weeknights and 5 p.m. on weekends would be shut down Tuesday. The service would be replaced by increasing the number of day and night appointments, a move based on requests from the community, hospital officials said.

About 900 people use the walk-in service daily, said Martin Gilbert, chief of pediatrics. He added that because the hospital does not handle emergency cases, the change would not affect life-and-death cases that are handled by Bellwood General Hospital.

Rose Hodges, a representative of Local 399 of the Hospital and Service Employees Union, said that hospital officials had told the union that 13 jobs would be eliminated or reduced to part-time positions as a result of the change of services. Hospital officials said one job had been eliminated and six would be reduced, but they said that the move to phone-in appointments was not part of budget cutbacks.

For the Record
Los Angeles Times Thursday February 27, 1992 Home Edition Long Beach Part J Page 3 Column 1 Zones Desk 4 inches; 112 words Type of Material: Correction
Medical Care--Kaiser Permanente's Imperial medical office in Downey has replaced evening walk-in service with an appointment system for patients. Adults can arrange appointments at the Imperial facility from 8:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday. Appointments for children are available between 7:30 a.m. and 7:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, and from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays, Sundays and holidays. A Feb. 20 story incorrectly reported the location of the facility that has eliminated walk-in service, and the times for adult appointments.
The Imperial facility does not provide emergency services, but Kaiser's hospital in Bellflower has emergency care. The story incorrectly reported that the Bellflower facility does not handle emergency cases.

Gilbert said that the changes would prove to be more helpful to the public by enabling them to book an appointment with a specific doctor.

"One of the biggest problems has been the huge demand of parents wanting to bring in their kids at day and not being able to make an appointment, so they come in to the walk-in clinic," he said. "Now we will be offering more appointments during the day, and at night, and providing consistency of care."

Appointments for adults will now be available from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. For children, appointments can be made between 7:30 a.m. and 7:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays, Sundays and holidays.

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