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Los Angeles Surge Hospital (LASH) for COVID-19 Patients Now Open


BY BRIAN HEWS • April 16, 2020

In an effort to relieve pressure on overflowing local hospitals, the former St. Vincent’s Hospital has opened its doors again as the Los Angeles Surge Hospital (LASH), the LASH has the ability to accommodate 266 CoVID-19 only patients.

The LASH is located on 201 S. Alvarado, just south of the 101 freeway, just  a few blocks from Staples Center.

The hospital is a partnership between the state of California, Los Angeles County, and Dignity Health and Kaiser Permanente, two of the state’s largest nonprofit healthcare systems. They will oversee day-to-day operations and management of the surge hospital.

“Beating this pandemic requires all of us to work together nimbly and creatively,” Kaiser Chairman and CEO Greg Adams told Los Cerritos Community News,” and there is no better proof of that than our collective work to stand up this surge hospital in a matter of days.”

Area hospitals will contact LASH and speak “physician to physician” to arrange a safe transfer of patients from one hospital to another. LASH will receive patients from hospitals around the community who have reached surge capacity. The entire program is being coordinated by the Los Angeles County Medical Alert Center.

LASH staff has received electronic health record, equipment, and procedural training to ensure safety for their patients and for themselves, as concerns about medical workers contracting the virus continue to rise.

“What we are opening is unique in Los Angeles,” says Julie Sprengel, acting CEO and president of Dignity Health’s Southwest Division, “we have no emergency room, we do not allow walk-ins and our patients will be received from community hospitals who are reaching their capacity.”



Amanda Magrum, Surge Education Team Director discussed the training procedures and protocols, ”We are training all of our staff on electronic health records [EHR] and equipment use to ensure staff and patients stay as safe as possible. Everyone knows that health care workers are being pushed to their limit. They are in personal protective equipment [PPE] for twelve hours a day, sometimes longer, and their stress levels are very high.”

“This temporary hospital will add much needed resources to help us safely meet the needs of an expected surge of patients affected by this pandemic,” said Adams,  “Kaiser Permanente is proud to be able to help launch it, and appreciate California’s leadership and collaboration as we look to leverage every resource available to fight COVID-19.”

“The Los Angeles Surge Hospital, located in the heart of my Supervisorial First District, will address our urgent health care needs through this unique public-private partnership among the State of California, L.A. County, Kaiser Permanente, and Dignity Health,” Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda Solis wrote in a statement on her website, “no one stands alone in this critical moment, and I thank each partner for coming together to treat COVID-19 patients and for ensuring our communities remain safe and healthy.”