UCI Health celebrates transformational acquisition of four community hospitals

March 28, 2024
Orange, Calif. — UCI Health, the clinical enterprise of the University of California, Irvine, has completed the acquisition of four hospitals and associated outpatient locations from Tenet Healthcare Corporation. Beginning today, the team members at Fountain Valley Regional Hospital, Lakewood Regional Medical Center, Los Alamitos Medical Center and Placentia-Linda Hospital are now part of UCI Health.

“This is a historic day for UC Irvine, California and beyond. We celebrate the transformation of UCI Health as a leader in the integration of academic and community-based health systems while promoting solutions to challenges facing healthcare,” said UC Irvine Chancellor Howard Gillman. “This visionary leap forward will bridge gaps in regional care and advance the University of California’s mission to serve our communities through academic excellence, cutting-edge research and dedicated public service.”

As Orange County’s only academic health system, UCI Health plays a unique and critical role providing healthcare in the region. This acquisition builds on that commitment to improve health in communities by expanding unrestricted healthcare access for more people in Southern California.

“The people of Southern California and the patients across these local communities have something truly remarkable to celebrate today,” said Chad T. Lefteris, president and chief executive officer of UCI Health. “UCI Health has built a legacy as a nationally regarded academic health system that is fiercely dedicated to improving the health of our communities. We are investing in building a healthier future for people that harnesses the power of advanced medicine with the convenience of care available close to home.”

Lefteris said UCI Health recognizes a unique opportunity to build on the quality care already being delivered in the communities served by these hospitals. Patients of the former Tenet hospitals and outpatient offices can continue receiving care at their local facilities as they normally would from their trusted physicians and care teams.

“Our goal is to become the nation’s friendliest and most accessible academic health system,” he said.

The acquisition adds 858 inpatient beds that, when paired with the 459 licensed beds at UCI Medical Center in Orange, strengthens UC Irvine’s ability to meet the continually increasing demand for inpatient beds for a range of intensive and critical care needs.

“UCI Health is backed by the power of a world-class public research institution, reflected in the academic excellence of the Susan & Henry Samueli College of Health Sciences,” said Steve A.N. Goldstein, MD, PhD, FAAP, Vice Chancellor of Health Affairs, UC Irvine. “This combination of top tier research, education of the next generation of providers, and commitment to the public health is advancing healthcare solutions and innovations in Southern California and beyond. Together, with providers in the new hospitals, UCI Health is building bridges for collaboration between academic and community-based healthcare and offering more people across California access to the highest caliber of healthcare.”

More patients will have access to advanced therapies in the region’s largest and most diverse portfolio of clinical trials, ranging from cancer to neurosciences, digestive diseases, orthopaedics and internal medicine specialties. UCI Health has consistently placed in the top 10 for quality and safety among the nation’s leading comprehensive academic health systems and received the top 10 Clinical Research Achievement Award from the Clinical Research Forum.

“We deeply appreciate the enthusiasm and support we have received since announcing this new chapter for healthcare in our region,” said Lefteris. “Now, we can begin strengthening the collaboration with local physicians and patients to expand healthcare services and provide unrestricted access for more people. Together, we will be an innovative, powerful team that will transform to meet the health needs of our communities.”

About UCI Health
UCI Health is the clinical enterprise of the University of California, Irvine, and the only academic health system based in Orange County. UCI Health is comprised of its main campus, UCI Medical Center, a 459-bed, acute care hospital in in Orange, Calif., four hospitals and affiliated physicians of the UCI Health Community Network in Orange and Los Angeles counties and ambulatory care centers across the region. Listed among America’s Best Hospitals by U.S. News & World Report for 23 consecutive years, UCI Medical Center provides tertiary and quaternary care and is home to Orange County’s only National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer center, high-risk perinatal/neonatal program and American College of Surgeons-verified Level I adult and Level II pediatric trauma center, gold level 1 geriatric emergency department and regional burn center. UCI Health serves a region of nearly 4 million people in Orange County, western Riverside County and southeast Los Angeles County.

About UCI
About the University of California, Irvine: Founded in 1965, UCI is a member of the prestigious Association of American Universities and is ranked among the nation’s top 10 public universities by U.S. News & World Report. The campus has produced five Nobel laureates and is known for its academic achievement, premier research, innovation and anteater mascot. Led by Chancellor Howard Gillman, UCI has more than 37,000 students and offers 224 degree programs. It’s located in one of the world’s safest and most economically vibrant communities and is Orange County’s second-largest employer, contributing $7 billion annually to the local economy and $8 billion statewide.