GOLETA, Calif.- A new plan to relocate 30 patients, who all require constant care, has patient's families outraged at Goleta Valley Cottage Hospital.
Originally, the patients were going to be moved from Goleta to Santa Barbara, but now Cottage Health Administrators say that plan is out. Instead, those patients are off to Camarillo.
Nicolas Moreno and Mark Wilson are only two of 30 subacute patients at Goleta Valley Cottage Hospital who need intensive care 24 hours a day.
"I have to be here for him. He's a great husband," said Lucia Wilson, a patient's wife.
Everyday for the past 8 years, Lucia Wilson has visited her husband Mark at the subacute unit. In 2005, Mark was in a motorcycle accident that left him in a coma.
"There's times I have to tell him, you have to wake up. It's getting hard for me. He's my rock," said Wilson.
For the past 3 years, Carolina Moreno also has visited everyday to see her 28-year-old son, Nicolas, who overdosed on prescription medications, and is now fighting to survive.
"He's getting better because of us. Nick has come a long way," explained Moreno.
Soon, Carolina and Lucia will have to drive longer to see their loved-ones. Cottage Health officials announced they will be relocating the 30 subacute patients to St. John's Pleasant Valley Hospital in Camarillo.
"He's going to feel like we abandoned him. So how do we do we travel down there? We can't do it," said Moreno.
"Why do they want to do this to us? This hospital told us they were going to put us on the forth floor since I got here," said Wilson.
Cottage Health officials dropped the old plan to move the patients to Santa Barbara and say St. John's Pleasant Valley Hospital offers more subacute beds and services for patients.
"St. John's Pleasant Valley Hospital offers a far superior facility for subacute residents than can be provided at Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital," added Ron Werft, president and CEO of Cottage Health System. "We are hopeful that a partnership agreement will be reached soon."
For families like, Carolina and Lucia, they worry they won't be able to visit anymore.
"We're like helpless here. We don't know what to do," explained Moreno.
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