‘Emergency Room for Richmond’ town hall set for Saturday

Community will continue to pay one of two Doctors Medical Center taxes following hospital closure
Doctors Medical Center closed in 2015 due to long-running financial troubles. The property was later purchased by the adjacent casino for casino parking.

A town hall in Richmond on Saturday, Nov. 9, aims to address what advocates say is a lack of emergency services in the city since the closure of Doctors Medical Center, previously known as Brookside Hospital, four years ago.

The town hall will take place at 11 a.m. at The Craneway Pavilion, 1414 Harbour Way South in Richmond and will feature two panels of experts on the topics: The Impact of DMC’s Emergency Room closure from those on the Front Lines, and What are our Emergency Care Options When Seconds Count? 

There will also be screening of the short documentary film The Desert.

Doctors Medical Center closed in April 2015 after 61 years in service due to financial struggles. The hospital had served many of the community’s uninsured and underinsured. The property on which it sat was subsequently purchased by The Lytton San Pablo Casino and the Lytton Band of Pomo Indians for transition into casino parking.

According to organizers of Saturday’s town hall, over 100,000 Richmond residents lost access to the only public, full-service emergency room in a 20-mile radius. Since then, patients in critical condition are being diverted to distant, overcrowded facilities, risking their lives, they said.   

Set to attend the town hall are Dr. Desmond Carson, Supervisor John Gioia, Mayor Rochelle Pardue Okimoto, Dr. William Walker, Dr. Chris Farnitano, Bo Kovitz and others. The event is sponsored by IBEW Local 302, Laborers International Union Local 324, Richmond Firefighters Local 188, Richmond Police Officers Association, Plumbers Local 159 and Plumbers and Steamfitters Union, Local 342.