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Survey Demonstrates Marin County Residents Support Locally Owned and Operated Marin General Hospital

GREENBRAE, Calif., Aug. 13 /PRNewswire/ -- Results from a new telephone survey polling Marin residents and commissioned by the Marin Healthcare District (MHD) to gauge awareness and attitudes about the future of Marin General Hospital (MGH) demonstrate alignment with the District's efforts to return the hospital to local control and that MGH is viewed as a critical community healthcare asset.

Seventy-two percent of Marin residents believe that a locally owned and operated hospital is important. Furthermore, 90 percent of respondents agreed that it was important for MGH to continue providing a full range of medical services. More than any other hospital in Marin, MGH is the preferred source of medical care among Marin residents.

"Spot surveys are important for the District to stay informed about what information residents require on this issue and, thus, to succeed in the task of taking back the governance of the hospital once Sutter leaves at the end of June, 2010," said MHD CEO Lee Domanico.

The survey, conducted by NSON Research, polled 400 Marin County residents from July 13 - July 15. It also found that MGH is first among Bay Area hospitals in terms of top-of-mind awareness (75 percent), that 82 percent of those polled who received care at MGH in the last two years said the hospital provides good or excellent medical care, and that even 40 percent of those polled who had not sought recent hospital care graded the hospital as good or excellent.

Domanico said these numbers are consistent with previous market research, including the statistic that MGH holds a 42.5 percent of local market share, with Kaiser a distant second at 18.5 percent. The survey also pinpointed preferred sources of information among residents to assist the District in targeting communications efforts.

"With all the challenges associated with our efforts, we take heart in these latest findings and continue to follow our road map, sign post by sign post, to the eventual return of community governance and then the required upgrade to keep MGH as a solid, premier quality healthcare institution for Marin residents," said Domanico.

The District is scheduled to re-assume responsibility for MGH June 30, 2010 after 15 years of operation by the Sutter Health System. Planning for the transfer began in 2006 following a Settlement and Transfer Agreement signed in October of that year.

The District's appointed management team is working jointly with Sutter to prepare for the transfer of MGH, and now with access to the facility, to conduct evaluations and facility planning. The management team is already meeting with various stakeholders including physicians, nurses, and employees, while the board is in the process of setting up a Hospital Operating Board to oversee hospital operations.

"The survey results reinforce the Marin General Hospital's reputation for quality patient care," said Domanico. "Our community understands the great investment and equity it has in this institution."

SOURCE Marin Healthcare District
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