The ongoing battle over pediatric services between two Central Valley hospitals reached another level Monday.
Community Medical Centers and UCSF plan to strengthen their partnership in the valley by expanding pediatric specialty care and a pediatric medical education program at CMC’s downtown Fresno hospital.
The center’s announcement came weeks after rival Valley Children’s Hospital revealed a plan to build its own pediatric residency and fellowship programs, after working with UCSF for years.
Craig Wagoner is the CEO of Community Regional Medical Center. He says expanding pediatric care is a priority.
“This is really part of our longer term strategy to provide health care to the entire family.”
But Wagoner also says the move is in response to recent actions by Valley Children’s, which has announced it is expanding its partnership with Stanford.
“When Children’s went in the direction they went in to and decided to cancel their contract with the Sante IPA and then also to cancel their agreement with UCSF we needed to step in and support UCSF but we also needed that piece to complete our strategy.”
Tensions between the two hospitals escalated last year when Valley Children’s chose to shut out referrals from Sante, a physicians group affiliated with Community.
“There are thousands of children affected by Children’s decision to get out of their Sante IPA agreement so that’s why it’s an immediate short term goal to make sure we have the pediatric sub specialist necessary to meet the needs of those kids," Wagoner says.
CMC's short term goal is to have more specialists at CRMC by this summer.