Small rural and district hospitals in California should not be closing their doors as they seek to comply with legal requirements linked to earthquake protection regulations, one state legislator said in proposing a new bill to stop such a scenario.
Existing law requires hospitals to retrofit to ensure adequate protection against earthquakes by Jan. 1, 2030, or they must be removed from acute care service.
Rep. Jim Wood, D-Healdsburg, has introduced AB 869 to help prevent that from happening. His proposal includes providing state grant funding and only requiring smaller hospitals unable to pay for the retrofits in time to do so when sufficient funds become available.
“These hospitals are literally lifelines to Californians in our more rural communities and most do not have the financial resources nor the ability to acquire funding from other sources to meet seismic requirements,” Mr. Wood said. “There has to be a way to move forward to keep these hospitals open as they work to meet these standards.”
More details on Mr. Wood’s proposals can be found here.