Hazel Hawkins

Hazel Hawkins Memorial Hospital issued a statement Nov. 28 assuring its employees and patients that the Hollister facility’s staff and other experts engaged by the hospital are “pursuing multiple angles to resolve” its current fiscal emergency.

HHMH also emphasized that the hospital remains open and “continues to offer high-quality patient care without compromise.”

The hospital’s board of directors on Nov. 4 declared that HHMH is in a state of fiscal emergency, which authorizes its administrators to file for Chapter 9 bankruptcy. No bankruptcy filing has been implemented yet.

Since then, HHMH has been in communication with the hospital district’s creditors to obtain emergency funding, says the Nov. 28 press release. These efforts include discussions with San Benito County supervisors, state assemblymembers and senators, and the California State Treasurer’s office.

HHMH has also held advocacy meetings with the Association of California Healthcare Districts and the California Hospital Association, says the press release.

“The hospital’s administrative staff and outside advisors are working hard to determine the best solutions for HHMH and its patient community by exploring all options,” Interim CEO Mary Casillas said.

Multiple factors led to the hospital board’s declaration of a fiscal emergency, including inflation, reduced reimbursements and the process of financial recovery in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic, according to hospital staff.

Earlier this month, registered nurses at HHMH—represented by the California Nurses Association—raised their concerns about the fiscal emergency and its potential impact on local patients and the health of San Benito County.

All inpatient and outpatient services remain open at HHMH, including the Emergency Department, says the press release. To find a doctor or health clinic, visit www.hazelhawkins.com.

HHMH is the only hospital in Hollister, serving all of San Benito County. Last year, Hazel Hawkins’ emergency room treated more than 21,000 patients, according to the CNA.

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Michael Moore is an award-winning journalist who has worked as a reporter and editor for the Morgan Hill Times, Hollister Free Lance and Gilroy Dispatch since 2008. During that time, he has covered crime, breaking news, local government, education, entertainment and more.



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