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Simi Hospital Hires a New Contractor for ER Physicians

After learning that the nine doctors on duty might have walked out, the facility signs a new one-year deal on the day its old pact expires.

October 04, 2003|From a Times Staff Writer

Simi Valley Hospital administrators hired new emergency-room doctors Friday, one week after terminating the contract of the medical group that had provided around-the-clock emergency services for a decade.

The contract with Equality Emergency Medical Group ended Friday, and the nine doctors were immediately replaced by professionals from Janzen, Johnston & Rockwell Emergency Medicine Management Services, said hospital President and Chief Executive Margaret R. Peterson.

Janzen, Johnston & Rockwell was given a one-year contract, said hospital spokeswoman Alicia Gonzalez.

Although Equality Emergency Medical Group doctors were supposed to staff the emergency room for another month, administrators had learned from the group's attorney that they might have walked out on the job, Gonzalez said.

"We had to take immediate action," she said.

The governing board voted last week not to renew Equality's contract after a state investigation found deficiencies in its treatment of psychiatric patients and in other areas. The decision ended the company's 10-year tenure with the east Ventura County hospital.

Gonzalez said some of the doctors who worked for Equality were hired by the new company and will continue to work at Simi Valley Hospital.

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