Santa Paula Hospital needs more patients to stay open

Santa Paula Hospital

By Debra Tash

Santa Paula Hospital: administrator for the Ventura County Health Department, Cyndie Cole, did a presentation at the start of this evening’s city council meeting in Santa Paula.  The hospital had reopened under the County’s Department of Health in 2006 after a 2 ½ year closure. Some new physician groups will be serving the community.  One of them is Apogee Physicians, which bills itself as: “the largest and most successful physician-owned and operated Hospitalist group in the nation.” Another is surgeon Dr. Jaime Arana who grew up in the community.  Also the hospital’s emergency room will come under the supervision of  staff at the Ventura County Medical Center’s emergency room.  Ms. Cole stated the 49 bed hospital needs more people to use it to keep the facility open.  County CEO Mike Powers, who used to head County Health, with the Board of Supervisors fully support the Santa Paula Hospital. The staff is highly trained and 65% of its employees live in the area. They serve all populations regardless of their ability to pay and try to source local businesses to support Ventura County’s economy.  There are plans to open a third operating room and the hospital will host a Health Fair on June 21st from 10am to 2pm.  Councilman Martin Hernandez said, “We are so lucky to have such compressive health care in our community.”

Item 10c was pulled from the council’s consent calendar for discussion.  The item would have given Adan Sandoval, owner of La Terraza Restaurant, the go ahead to process a Conditional Use Permit/Enforcement Agreement to expand operations next door in what used to be a furniture store.  The issue was parking.  There are three public lots nearby in the downtown area with over 100 spaces.  But other businesses vie for use of those lots.  The Planning Commission had given Sandoval the green light  but Mayor Cook objected and was the most vocal in opposing the expanded use.  The Fire Department would have to determine the final number of occupants and that number depended on whether Sandoval would be doing banquets, bar service or regular seating.  The council voted 4 to 1, with Councilman Martin Hernandez, who supported the expansion, the solitary no vote, to have the item moved to the next council meeting’s agenda.  

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Debra Tash is Editor-in-Chief of Citizensjournal.us, past president for Citizens Alliance for Property Rights, business executive and award-winning author, residing in Somis

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