In August 2018, Verity Health System filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, putting the future of Westlake's St. Vincent Medical Center into flux.  But out of that chaos, Los Angeles County sees opportunity.

At its meeting on March 19, the Board of Supervisors will consider a motion introduced by 1st District Supervisor Hilda Solis which calls for the County to pay up to $120 million to purchase the 163-year-old hospital and its adjoining facilities via bankruptcy auction. The hospital campus, which is located at the intersection of 3rd and Alvarado Streets, spans approximately 10.49 acres.  Its centerpiece is a 300,000-square-foot hospital complex, which is surrounded by several smaller medical office buildings and laboratories.

The maximum $120-million price tag referenced by Solis' motion is considered to be the fair market value of the property, according to an appraisal report commissioned by the County.

Should the County succeed in acquiring St. Vincent Medical Center, it would not operate the facility as an acute inpatient hospital, according to David Howard, Assistant Chief Executive Officer in the County's Chief Executive Office.

"We would initially focus on providing primary outpatient medical care and other services that are in keeping with the existing uses of the campus," said Howard via e-mail.  "Over a period of time, we would engage the community in a planning process seeking to identify uses that are both complementary to the area and address the pressing needs of the area."

Solis' motion refers to the St. Vincent site as an opportunity to create a "Health and Human Services Campus," in a high-need area with few County services.

Los Angeles County will face competition should it attempt to buy the hospital - Corona-based KPC Groups has bid $610 million to purchase St. Vincent Medical CEnter, as well as four other facilities owned by Verity.