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L.A. supervisors vote to reopen MLK hospital

December 1, 2009 12:11:41 AM PST
The L.A. County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved a deal with the University of California Board of Regents to reopen Martin Luther King Jr. Hospital.The hospital was closed in 2007 after a series of patient deaths blamed on shoddy care.

Supervisors ratified an agreement with the University of California Board of Regents for a 120-bed facility on the site of the old hospital. MLK Jr. Hospital mainly serves a low-income community in the South Los Angeles area.

The hospital will be rebuilt from the ground up. The cost, according to the county, will be around $350 million.

"Without a doubt our projections are measured, they are prudent, and it is in part why the University of California has reached a comfort level with partnering with us," said L.A. County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas.

The hospital will be staffed with UC-approved doctors and will be run by an independent nonprofit organization. UC will also run a graduate medical training program at the hospital.

"I felt for a long time and I think we all felt for a long time that there was not only the issue of delivery of care but inspiring confidence in the county at large and in the community in which this hospital serves and frankly the University of California is the best candidate to re-inspire confidence and we needed their partnership," said L.A. County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavksy.

The county's chief executive officer says he'll have a report ready in 30 days outlining the rebuilding process of the new hospital, which is expected to reopen by 2013.


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