El Camino defends bookkeeping

Hospital issues response to grand jury charge

El Camino Hospital officially responded today to a Santa Clara County Civil Grand Jury report, which criticized the health care organization for not clearly separating the money it receives from tax payers and the money it generates as a non-profit corporation.

In a statement statement released June 16, the hospital said it has "preliminarily reviewed" the report, which found that the hospital district and the non-profit organization formed by the district "appears to operate as one unit," intermingling funds in such a way "that one cannot delineate how taxpayer contributions are spent."

El Camino defended its bookkeeping practices while also saying the hospital "respects the role of the Civil Grand Jury and will give due consideration to the findings and recommendations in the report."

The grand jury, which passed and adopted the report on May 19, recommended that El Camino "account for tax revenues on a line-item basis, so that taxpayers can follow the money to determine monies are properly spent."

According to the report, the grand jury was unable to determine where the hospital derived the funds used to purchase the Community Hospital of Los Gatos in 2009 and sponsor the San Jose Sharks' playoff games this year.

In it's official response, the hospital did not go into great detail defending the purchase of the Los Gatos campus and did not make any mention of its sponsorship of the Sharks' playoff run.

"The ECHD is a vigilant steward of the public money it receives," the statement read. "The ECHD Board ensures that district funds are expended for the benefit of the district and the people served by the district."


Like this comment
Posted by Linda
a resident of Rex Manor
on Jun 17, 2011 at 1:22 pm

"will give due consideration to the findings and recommendations in the report" is code for "will ignore the report"

Like this comment
Posted by joanne
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Jun 17, 2011 at 5:39 pm

'Tis no surpise that our little community hospital has adopted Wall Street tactics.

Like this comment
Posted by Member
a resident of another community
on Jun 17, 2011 at 6:57 pm

I've worked at ECH for more than 35 years. The corporation was created as a device to shield strategic planning information from competing non-profit hospitals. Transperancy was to be avoided.

As I recall, years ago the California At General was considering an investigation into the mixing of tax payer funds when ECH merged with Camino Medical (now PAMF). The suit was dropped. Several million dollars were not acconted for.

Like this comment
Posted by Member
a resident of another community
on Jun 18, 2011 at 12:58 pm

Oh my! All of this negative publicity with articles of Grand Jury investigation under the watch of Mr. Graham cannot be good for the hospital!

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