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Kaiser closes in-house pediatrics unit in Hayward

ABC 7 Bay Area, 11/18/13

HAYWARD, Calif. (KGO) -- An East Bay pediatric hospital unit that that treats young patients overnight is now closed. Families accustomed to visiting the hospital in Hayward on Hesperian Boulevard will now have to go elsewhere.

Kaiser's in-house pediatrics unit in Hayward closed at midnight, which means children who live near here who need to be hospitalized must now go to Oakland.

The transition was said to be a smooth one. There were no patients at the facility over the weekend, so there were no patients that needed to be transferred.

The 21 of the 22 nurses that worked there had been reassigned. One retired.

Many are still upset about the closure. They say they are concerned about the patients who live near here.

"These people are going to be evaluated in the emergency room, they're going to be too sick, at that time they're going to try to stabilize them, then they're going to have to try transporting them to a facility that has pediatrics," said Robert Marph with the California Nurses Association. "That can take anywhere from two to six to eight hours."

"We recognize that it's a change in location, but we also know families want the best for their children," said Kaiser Senior Vice President Tom Hanenburg. "And the best care for children is to be treated in a pediatric specialty center, such as Kaiser Oakland. And this again supported by clinicians at the Children's Hospital of Oakland."

Kaiser's outpatient pediatric facility in Hayward will remain open. Kaiser says out-patient services make up more than 99 percent of the care children there receive.

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