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COVID-19 Preparedness: French Hospital Medical Center’s Chief Medical Officer Draws from Military Background for Planning

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CENTRAL COAST, CA – April 11, 2020 – French Hospital Medical Center’s Chief Medical Officer Jim Malone, MD is also a Colonel in the U.S. Army Reserve with expertise in setting up and training how to operate combat hospitals in crisis situations. Dr. Malone is using his invaluable experience and critical skills in the planning of the Alternate Care Site at Cal Poly during this COVID-19 pandemic.  

“This team effort has been instrumental in helping our hospitals and county prepare for a potential surge of patients,” says Jim Malone, MD, “this undertaking is kind of like building a plane while you’re flying it and our ongoing collaboration with Cal Poly has been invaluable as we plan and prepare this supplemental Alternate Care Site.”

The Cal Poly Alternate Care site will be able to provide up to nearly 900 beds. It is not meant to provide the same capabilities of an acute care hospital, but is designed for use in the event local hospitals become severely impacted with a surge of COVID-19 patients. 

With a target readiness date of April 15, the team is now working on staffing and training for the site. “If we build it and never have to use it, I would still consider this mission accomplished,” added Dr. Malone. 

If you would like to interview Dr. Malone about his role in the ACS group please contact [email protected] or call (805) 739-3574.


About French Hospital Medical Center
French Hospital Medical Center, located in San Luis Obispo, California, is rated one of the Top 100 Hospitals in the nation and one of the Top 50 Cardiac Hospitals in the nation by Thomson Reuters. The Copeland, Forbes, and Rossi Cardiac Care Center provide the latest innovative cardiac and imaging technology on the Central Coast.

The hospital’s current modernization and redesign project is an example of the commitment to meet the growing needs of the community with lifesaving advancements in medicine coupled with excellent, compassionate care. The hospital is home to the unique Hearst Cancer Resource Center offering free education, resources and support to cancer patients and their families. French is a Dignity Health member of the Central Coast which also includes Arroyo Grande Community Hospital in Arroyo Grande, CA and Marian Regional Medical Center in Santa Maria, CA.

Dignity Health of the Central Coast is an integrated network of top quality hospitals, physicians from the most prestigious medical schools, and comprehensive outpatient services including primary care offices, premier ambulatory surgery centers, technologically-advanced laboratories and imaging centers and a full service home health agency; all recognized for quality, safety and service. Each hospital is supported by an active philanthropic Foundation to help meet the growing health care needs of our communities.



Publish date: 

Saturday, April 11, 2020