Thursday, January 27, 2005

Midwood Community Hospital

I went to work for Midwood Community Hospital from August 1989 to May 1990. Midwood was located in Stanton, on Katella Ave, about a block west of Beach Blvd. It used to be known as Stanton Community Hospital.

I handled billing and collections. Our office was set up in the old Stanton City Hall building, located in front of the hospital.

The hospital was kinda ratty. It was next door to the Sheriff's substation. If you visited another hospital's Emergency Room with an ailment that was not critical, and you didn't have any health care insurance, chances are they sent you to Midwood. Because of that, Midwood eventually closed up its ER.

One of the things that was frequently talked about was the day when 60 Minutes came to Midwood to investigate some fraudulent activity. I didn't get the full details of what happened. But the owner of Midwood didn't run the place very well. Rumor had it that the owner bought the hospital as a gift for his wife. He was also a part owner of Mission Medical Center in Mission Viejo, and apparently had some stake in Fountain Valley Regional Medical Center too.

By the time Spring of 2000 came around, the owner decided to turn the place into a psychiatric hospital. They fired almost everyone. Another biller and I were the only ones handling the Accounts Receivables. We had to abandon the old City Hall building, and set up office in one of the patient rooms.

Rumor had it that the owner managed to convince the Sheriff's substation next door to bring the crazy people they dragged off the street and admit them into the hospital. This was done to demonstrate to other psychiatrists that our rooms were filled with patients. I had the job of trying to collect money from these folks. That was impossible.

I finally quit working there, and moved across the street to a worker's comp clinic to do billing and collections. Since then, the hospital is competely gone.


  1. Steve,
    I was a patient at Midwood Community hospital in 1987. Do you know of any place I can contact for records from that time. I am in dire need of surgery reports for my doctors here in Oregon. Any help you can give would be deeply appreciated. Sandra Jones

  2. Brenda, and Anonymous, I'm sorry I don't know where you can contact for records of Midwood/Stanton Hospital. About a month after I stopped working there, the owner sold it to a chain of psychiatric hospitals. I want to say the company name began with "Sunset" or "Sunrise", but not sure on that.

    It seems like a couple years later the place was closed down again. I don't know who has those records.

  3. I worked at this hospital, but the name was Suncrest and it was indeed a psychiatric hospital, but it had a medical component to it as I remember it. I worked the night shift, and one night just prior to the place closing down, a large truck came to the back and loaded up surgical equipement. We reported it to the doctors that owned it but we heard nothing back. I took my check to the bank it was written against twice and found the hospital had no funds and I had to wait 2 days to get my check cashed. Finally the last couple of checks I got from them, I ran across the street and paid the guy at a small market a percentage to cash the checks. The owners kept calling these meetings to assure us that the hospital was not in any type of trouble and that our jobs were secure. Our goodbye letter and last paycheck was handed to us as we came to work that one last day. The place had been beautifully redecorated/remodled just prior to that for an eating disorder. They were flying patients from all over the US and telling us not to mention the eating disorder in our charting. Nobody I knew paid any attention to that, and we were informed at the end that it was because of our charting that the hospital went under.

  4. Re : Suncrest Hospital Stanton
    I had to write when I read the post by anonymous. The faciity as I remember was freestanding hospital owned by Dr. Stanley Mayberg M.D. the way that the last appointed official Stephanie something and Mayberg handled the employees of the facilty was cruel. I am sorry to you Anonymous for what you went thru. I contracted part of the hospital to run a program called Gateway Mental Health, we were not associated with the Eating disorder program, but were never paid in the end Mayberg and his group, billing office cheated us all out of our pay, and ended a wonderful experience that I will never forget. I moved my clients and staff to another facility as Suncrest was crumbling around. My name is Craig McKnight and i own Gateway, we had no idea what we were stepping into, we just knew we were happy to make a difference. Regardless of financial losses, I must say my experience there and the wonderful staff and client's I encountered are some of my fondest memories, that I will always cherish. We started the first safe place for Gay and Lesbian clients to recover, heal and empower themselves. There is no financial gain that could ever outweigh that for me.

  5. I worked for Suncrest Hospital - Torrance, and worked my last few days for Dr. Mayberg as part of the office staff that was temporarily relocated to the Stanton facility.

    I can't answer for the treatment of the employees at Stanton, but can tell you that those of us who worked for Torrance were lied to and treated horribly in the end. No one deserved what we received, which was (after the OC Bankruptcy courts were through) less than 10 cents on the dollar of the wages that were due.

    If any ex-Torrance employees are out there, I'd love to hear from you! There were a lot of very good people who worked there, and it seems that everyone drifted apart after this mess was over.

  6. I too worked for Suncrest Hospital - Torrance, and was one of the "lucky few" who commuted to the facility in Stanton to assist with "closing out" the books. If any former Suncrest employees read this, I'd love to hear from you! In spite of all of the problems at the end, we remained a family and I'd really like to reconnect.

  7. i was an ER tech for midwood --- 1994 to around 1988/89
    very busy ---- Stanton PD would always bring in pts--- after they fell or got messed up somehow....
    and a lot of incidents on Beach BLVD...
    we may have been small and ratty but great staff and great ER DOCs


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