Over 20 Total Lots Up For Auction at One Location - TX Cleansweep 06/25

Adventist Health settles with PG&E for $200 million over wildfire destruction of California hospital

por John R. Fischer, Senior Reporter | May 16, 2023
Feather River Hospital (photo courtesy of Adventist Health)
Adventist Health, in California, has settled with Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) for $200 million over the loss of Feather River Hospital, in Paradise, which was made inoperable by the 2018 Camp Fire, the deadliest and most destructive wildfire in the state’s history.

Started by a faulty transmission line, the fire spread and intensified throughout Butte County, becoming a firestorm that destroyed much of Paradise, including the 100-bed acute-care hospital, which also had a cancer center and maternity ward, and was the only healthcare provider and largest employer in the town.

The facility also suffered water damage from firefighters’ efforts to put out the blaze, according to the Press Democrat.

The compensation will come from the PG&E Fire Victim Trust, a $13.5 billion fund established in 2020 to compensate victims for utility-caused wildfires dating back to 2015.

To date, Adventist, which originally sought $1 billion, has received $120 million (60%) of its settlement, and has recouped losses from insurance that bring the total amount it has received to at least $138 million, according to public tax audits.

Earlier this year, Adventist said it would not reopen its Paradise location, using the settlement money instead to expand the Feather River Health Center on Skyway into a larger and dedicated rapid care clinic by remodeling the primary care clinic to increase patient access and capacity, and reestablishing women's imaging with mammography and bone density tests, reported the Appeal-Democrat.

Paradise residents say Adventist misled them into thinking the hospital would reopen. “It’s good, but it’s just not enough,” Paradise council member Steve Crowder told the Press Democrat.

Based on a one-year investigation, a grand jury in 2020 found PG&E repeatedly ignored warning signs about its aging power lines and faulty maintenance, and did not follow state regulations for maintaining them, reported NPR.

PG&E pled guilty to 84 separate counts of involuntary manslaughter and one felony count of starting the fire, which destroyed more than 18,000 structures and killed at least 85 people, according to news radio station KSRO.

Adventist, a nonprofit, declined to comment on the settlement or other details, due to a confidentiality agreement between it and trust officials, and did not specify whether it will owe taxes on the payments.

You Must Be Logged In To Post A Comment