The Petaluma Health Care District is reengaging with St. Joseph Health in talks for the future operations of Petaluma Valley Hospital, healthcare officials said Wednesday.
St. Joseph and Adventist Health announced last month the two companies would form a partnership to manage their Northern California operations. Once that deal is completed, the joint venture could take over negotiations for PVH. In the meantime, St. Joseph, which has operated PVH since 1997, has agreed to continue running the hospital until January 2020, according to Elece Hempel, the president of the health care district board.
“We are at a place where we have reengaged with St. Joseph because of the new company,” she said. “It will probably be the new company that will run the hospital.”
St. Joseph’s 20-year lease for Petaluma’s hospital expired last year, and early talks to extend the lease fell apart over financial terms and women’s reproductive health issues. The district launched a search for a new operator and had most recently been in talks with Southern California-based Paladin Healthcare. Hempel said the district is no longer pursuing talks with Paladin.
Todd Salnas, president of St. Joseph Health in Sonoma County, said the new joint operating company, or JOC, provides new opportunities to reach a deal to operate the hospital.
“SJH-SC leadership is pleased with this development and believes this is a positive step for the community,” he said in a statement. “While terms have not been agreed upon at this time, we are looking forward to further discussions and are hopeful that SJH, through the JOC, will be able to successfully negotiate a relationship that maintains PVH operations for foreseeable future.”