Home Crime Controversy Surrounding Recent Stripping of Trauma Center Designation at Waukegan Medical Center

Controversy Surrounding Recent Stripping of Trauma Center Designation at Waukegan Medical Center

Controversy Surrounding Recent Stripping of Trauma Center Designation at Waukegan Medical Center

WAUKEGAN, In poor health. — A medical center that recently lost its trauma center designation has been the topic of controversy within the northern suburbs and now the power’s CEO is weighing in. It began weeks ago when the Lake County Coroner penned a letter highlighting her concerns about Vista Medical Center East in Waukegan. Lake County Coroner Jennifer Banek has been at the middle of the recent scrutiny surrounding the power, which was stripped of its level 2 trauma center designation. The ability was purchased by the L.A.-based group American Healthcare Systems (AHS) last July. “They imagine in turning around small hospitals that might otherwise close and all into corporate medicine,” Vista Medical Center CEO Bianca Defilippi. Read more: Latest Chicago news headlines AHS owns 4 hospitals and on the helm of Vista is Defilippi. “They imagine in turning around small hospitals that might otherwise close and all into corporate medicine,” Defilippi said. But Banek, who previously did contractual work at Vista as a nurse anesthetist, said the cracks began showing months ago, as birth rates slowed. “Between 2022 and 2023, it’s about 60%, so it’s definitely noticeable,” Banek said. Last November, 20 babies were born at the power, in comparison with 88, 12 months prior. But Banek said services dwindled too. “I might say around November there have been rumors the urologists received payment and returned for insufficient funds and eventually they resigned their privileges,” Banek said. When asked why the urologists left, Defilippi said it was as a result of multiple reasons and added that she wouldn’t speak on their behalf. It’s a difficulty that Banek said was brought up in a December meeting with Defilippi when she asked the CEO concerning the facility’s financial obligation. “She said we’ve never missed a payroll,” Banek said. On Tuesday, Defilippi offered some clarification. VOTE: Tom Skilling’s most memorable moments “We were never not paying physicians but delayed in our payment,” Defilippi said. But when WGN-TV spoke with Faisal Gill, the Chief Legal Officer at American Healthcare Systems, he said something different. “Staff have at all times been paid we’ve never missed payroll,” Gill said. Gill reiterated the statement again in writing last Tuesday. When asked about Gill’s statement, Defilippi said there have been delayed payments. “Well, I need to make a difference we have now never missed a payroll. These physicians will not be employed here they’re 1099 contractors on which we were delayed on payments,” Defilippi said. Dr. Jonathan Citow, from the American Center For Spine & Neurosurgery, said he stopped working at the power after not receiving payment for six months. “At no point have we said that we don’t owe that physician that cash for his or her work and that we’re committed to paying those back,” Defilippi said. One other person, Dr. Antonio Mister, told WGN-TV that his last day was Monday and added that he’s owed almost $50,000. Trent Tobias, who isn’t a health care provider, but owns a shopping mall in Grayslake, said he has an excellent bill of his own. When asked if she knew who Tobias was, Defilippi said no. “Plus maintenance, just shy of $14,000, excluding late fees,” Tobias said. In response to Tobias, he was leasing a part of the middle to the previous hospital owner as a primary care center. He said the lease was then acquired by AHS. “Payments began coming in late almost immediately once they took over,” Tobias said. In response to Tobias, he was still getting the cash, up until last month. Chicago crime experts offer tips about tips on how to avoid carjackings, minimize harm “Well, we’re still late, we’re very late. January has not been paid,” Tobias said. But the problems he’s facing don’t end there. Tobias said February’s payments are still outstanding, and the lease runs through May of 2028. But the larger issue for Tobias is the whole lot that has been left behind. “I’m unsure what to do except sell or eliminate the stuff left behind like medical equipment,” Tobias said. “It’s a shame but it surely’s the headache I actually have at 62. In response to Defilippi, it’s all a part of clinic consolidation, to assist with the money flow deficiencies. She said a moving company has been contracted and there may be a plan in place. When Defilippi was asked if the plan included payment to Tobias for the outstanding amounts, she offered some details. “I might imagine so, but that’s something he’s handled with our attorneys,” Defilippi said. Back in December, Banek said she drafted a letter on the behest of a hospital board member about her concerns. “I couldn’t say a date that I remember receiving the letter,” Defilippi said. “The coroner has my cell, I’d have appreciated any notes we could improve upon.” But a few month later, Banek was walked out of the power. “I like working at Vista, I like the patients,” Banek said. Nonetheless, Defilippi said it was not as a result of the letter. Chicago won’t renew ShotSpotter contract, Mayor Johnson says “She was not walked out as a result of the feedback,” Defilippi said. “There have been many doctors who felt uncomfortable with the media getting used and didn’t feel comfortable working alongside her.” When Defilippi was asked if Banek was relieved due to how the opposite staff felt she said it was inside their right to achieve this, “A part of our responsibility with that contract is to request anything that disrupts operations of the hospital we have now the best to ask that individual not be on the schedule,” Defilippi said. In response to Banek, the state’s investigation and decision to strip the power of its level 2 trauma center designation this month, based on things like a scarcity of a blood bank, anesthesia, or a full-time Trauma Coordinator, proves the issues are there. “Those observations were made by Medicare and IDPH, not Jennifer Banek,” Banek said. But Defilippi said otherwise. “At no point has there been a risk to patient safety or inability to supply look after trauma patients,” Defilippi said. Defilippi added that officials disagreed with the health department’s decision and have submitted an appeal. In the midst of that appeal, questions have also been raised concerning the admittance of gunshot victims at the power. WGN-TV asked Defilippi if there was a penalty for admitting a patient with a gunshot wound when the power doesn’t have the certification to achieve this. What’s ‘the ick’: Breaking down the viral dating term “The penalty could be if we didn’t treat a patient who got here in through our ER,” Defilippi said. So what does the longer term at Cista appear to be? In response to Defilippi, several latest doctors are coming on board and as of Feb. 10, urology is back up and running. “We’ve signed our former urologists they’ve come back to Cista and we’re very pleased to have them back,” Defilippi said. Defilippi also stressed a commitment to get the whole lot back on course. “We understand our mission we have now a population we would like to serve and are committed to serving,” Defilippi said. One other doctor told WGN-TV on Tuesday that he left the hospital on Monday and remains to be owed just below $50,000. The state health department also added that it stands by its actions and can proceed to work with Vista to handle the problems that they’ve identified “affecting the protection of patients.” Close Modal Suggest a Correction Suggest a Correction


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