California: UCLA Health suffers data breach
UCLA Health System (Los Angeles, CA) announced that cyber criminals infiltrated part of its network, potentially exposing the records of an estimated 4.5 million consumers. UCLA Health first discovered suspicious activity on its network October 2014, but not until May 2015 did it learn that the attackers had accessed parts of the network that contained personal information, including names, addresses, dates of birth, Social Security numbers, medical record numbers, and Medicare or health plan ID numbers. UCLA will provide 12 months of free identity theft recovery and restoration services to affected patients.
Oregon: OHSU Knight Cancer Institute raises $1B for new cancer research
OHSU Knight Cancer Institute (Portland, OR) raised $1 billion through its Knight Cancer Challenge, the most successful fundraising challenge completed in the institute’s history, with over 10,000 donors contributing. The $1 billion will be used to construct a new cancer research facility and new cancer care clinics and allow the institute to recruit 300 researchers. OHSU Knight Cancer Institute is owned by Oregon Health Sciences University (OHSU) (Portland, OR).
Massachusetts: Boston Children’s Hospital planning a $1.5B expansion
Boston Children’s Hospital (System) (Boston, MA) will file a CON in late 2015 for a $1.5 billion expansion and renovation of Boston Children’s Hospital at Waltham (Waltham, MA) and Boston Children’s Hospital (Boston, MA). The specialty surgery center at Waltham will have 48 new outpatient beds, six new ORs, and enhanced mental health services. The project is part of the larger system-wide expansion, which includes a new 11-story, 500,000-sq-ft, 100-bed patient tower at Boston Children’s Hospital. The Waltham project will be completed in 2019 and the new patient tower at the Boston campus will open in 2021.
New Jersey: Barnabas Health, Robert Wood Johnson Health enter definitive merger agreement
Barnabas Health (West Orange, NJ) and Robert Wood Johnson Health System (New Brunswick, NJ) signed a definitive agreement to merge, creating a new system with 11 hospitals and 30,000 employees. The new organization will be known as RWJ Barnabas Health, but few other details were released. The merger is expected to take effect in 2016 after regulatory approval.
Pennsylvania: PA hospitals receive approval to form new healthcare network
The Pennsylvania state AG has approved the affiliation proposed by Indiana Regional Medical Center (Indiana, PA), Punxsutawney Area Hospital (Punxsutawney, PA), and Clarion Hospital (Clarion, PA), giving the green light to form Pennsylvania Mountains Care Network. Under the agreement, each hospital will maintain its own assets and remain independently governed, while a board of directors from the three hospitals will govern the overall strategy. Previously, the three rural hospitals were all founding members of a regional purchasing coalition, Pennsylvania Mountains Healthcare Alliance (DuBois, PA), which provides cost savings through sharing resources among 21 members. The new healthcare network has 2,200 employees, 200 physicians, and a combined net patient revenue of $220 million.
Washington DC: HHS names three hospitals to lead new National Ebola Training and Education Center
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) (Washington, DC) named three hospitals to lead its new National Ebola Training and Education Center. The hospitals are prepared to safely identify, isolate, transport, and treat patients with Ebola and other potential emerging threats. Bellevue Hospital Center (New York, NY), Emory University Hospital (Atlanta, GA), and Nebraska Medical Center (Omaha, NE) will co-lead the HHS Ebola center, which offers state health departments and healthcare facilities access to training and clinical expertise of the three facilities.