23 October 2019 | Gavin Newsom, the California Governor, signed a bill on October 12 giving special permission for an emergency room to operate in Paradise, California.

Adventist Health will operate the ER in the town that was largely destroyed by fire late last year. The bill makes an exception to the usual legislation in California that prohibits freestanding emergency rooms.

The Chico Enterprise-Record reported that the bill was authored by state senator Jim Nielsen, a Republican from Tehama, California. It would allow six years of operation for the emergency room, providing it meets certain requirements.

Newsom said that the “destruction experienced by this community is a unique situation that requires a unique response,” in a letter accompanying the bill. Newsom said that this would also provide a window of time to consider long-term plans for a hospital in the town.

The Chico Enterprise-Record noted that the emergency room will provide medical services to the town’s elderly population and will also help provide jobs.

Last year’s Camp Fire forced the closure of 100-bed Adventist Health Feather River, the largest employer in Paradise and the town’s only hospital.

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