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UC could vote to reopen King

CALIFORNIA BRIEFING / LOS ANGELES

November 19, 2009|Molly Hennessy-Fiske

Members of the UC Board of Regents meeting at UCLA said they were cautiously optimistic that they would vote today to partner with Los Angeles County to reopen Martin Luther King Jr. hospital in Willowbrook.

Under the proposal, the county and the University of California would create a nonprofit entity to run the hospital, with the university providing physician services and medical oversight.

The agreement specifies that the hospital would have 120 beds, an emergency room, three operating rooms and no trauma center.

County officials have promised to secure a $100-million letter of credit to guarantee the $63-million annual cost of operating the 120-bed hospital, which is scheduled to open in 2013, according to Dr. John Stobo, UC's senior vice president of health sciences and services.

The letter of credit will be good for six years, Stobo said. Los Angeles pharmaceutical billionaire Patrick Soon-Shiong has also offered a $100-million guaranty to underwrite the proposal.

-- Molly Hennessy-Fiske

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