Media Contact: Heather Wong, 202.225.3072
Washington, D.C. – In light of the Hospital Corporation of America’s (HCA) announcement that the San Jose Medical Center will close even earlier than scheduled, Reps. Zoe Lofgren and Mike Honda (D –San Jose) Thursday sent a letter to Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist asking for assistance to keep the San Jose Medical Center open. Senator Frist’s family owns the HCA.
The text of the letter is below:
October 14, 2004
Senator Bill Frist
461 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Washington D.C., 20510
Dear Senator Frist:
The Hospital Corporation of America (HCA) announced on September 9, 2004, that they would close the San Jose Medical Center (SJMC), our busiest trauma center by December 9, 2004, instead of the previously announced 2007 date, giving the community a 90-day notice of closure. This is a matter of great concern to us and all the people of San Jose. Not only could this be the sixth hospital in California to close in 2004 but it also would mark the end of over 80 years of medical service that SJMC has provided our community.
SJMC is owned by your family's HCA hospital empire. We have a very difficult time understanding how the nation's largest for-profit hospital chain, operating over 175 hospitals across the country, cannot secure the financial resources needed to keep our SJMC open.
We realize that hospitals today face the difficult task of balancing their business model with proper patient care. As a doctor, you should understand this better than most. We would like to meet with you as soon as possible regarding the possible closure of SJMC.
This matter is vitally important to our districts. It is literally a matter of life and death. If nothing is done, thousands of our constituents will be forced to find new care facilities to meet their medical needs.
On behalf of all of the people of San Jose, we look forward to working with you to find a solution to this pressing problem.
Zoe Lofgren Mike Honda
Member of Congress Member of Congress