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John Muir rehab clinic to close at shopping center

 

Monday, May 6 (8:30 a.m.): The John Muir Health Outpatient Rehabilitation Clinic in the Rossmoor Shopping Center is set to close at the end of May, according to the Walnut Creek-based not-for-profit health care organization.

A letter sent to John Muir Health patients who use the Tice Valley facility states: “After careful evaluation, we have made the difficult decision to close our Outpatient Rehabilitation clinics in Tice Valley and Brentwood. The last day these clinics will be open is May 29, 2024.”

John Muir Health spokesman Ben Drew said last week that it is only the Rehabilitation Services segment of the Tice Valley operation that is closing; he stressed that all other services at the Tice Valley facility will remain open, with no other changes to any of the other physicians or staff there.

The Tice Valley clinic currently hosts 13 Rehabilitation Services employees – nine physical therapists, two PT assistants and two front desk staff. Drew said any current Rehabilitation Services employees who do not continue with a new role at John Muir Health will receive a severance package and other support.

Drew said the rehabilitation service at the Tice Valley clinic has been losing money. “We looked into a variety of options to keep the rehab clinics (Brentwood and Tice Valley) open but were not able to find a viable solution,” he said. The closures, he added, are part of John Muir Health’s ongoing efforts to be “good stewards of our financial resources.”

The John Muir Health rehab clinic had operated for approximately 15 years at 1220 Rossmoor Parkway, in a building owned by Golden Rain Foundation before, in 2020, John Muir moved that and other services the short distance into the remodeled former CVS Pharmacy space in the Rossmoor Shopping Center.

The letter that clients of the Tice Valley clinic received says they can switch to one of John Muir Health’s two other outpatient rehabilitation clinics, in Concord and Pleasant Hill, where hours are being expanded, including on weekends, to accommodate more patients. Services available in these locations include physical therapy, speech therapy, occupational therapy, hand therapy, neurological therapy, pelvic health, pediatrics (Pleasant Hill) and lymphedema (Concord).

Drew could not provide a number of Rossmoor residents currently being served by the Tice Valley clinic’s rehabilitation staff. He said, though, that John Muir Health is “actively reaching out to referring physicians and our current patients to help them find an alternative rehabilitation provider in their area if they choose not to continue their care at John Muir Health.”

One patient who isn’t happy about this is Jim Bolinger, a Rossmoor resident who has been getting physical therapy at the Tice Valley office after a February knee replacement. He said he doesn’t drive, instead depending on the GoGo-Grandparent ride service to get there. As for driving to Pleasant Hill, “It’s not that far for me, but it’s certainly not convenient.

“I’m just going to wrap up my PT, probably early, and call it a day,” Bolinger said.

Rossmoor resident Gerry Waters said he has been getting some medical services performed at the Tice Valley clinic for years, as his HMO provider worked through John Muir Health. He said he also regularly drives neighbors of his to the Tice Valley clinic, and that ending Rehabilitation Services there will adversely affect some of them.

“How can you do this to all us old people?” Waters, 77, said last week. “I can drive, but several of my neighbors can’t.”

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