The patients at Laguna Honda endure a life stripped down to the barest conditions. They are some of the city’s poorest residents – many are severely disabled or nearing the end of their lives. They live in the hospital’s open wards and own very little. Small comforts such as buying a soda from the hallway vending machine can be impossible with no money. That’s where the Patient Gift Fund comes in.
Donors give to improve the daily lives of the patients with such things as a candy bar, a pair of slippers, a small TV set or a bus trip to Crissy Field. But, using public records, the I-Team has confirmed the hospital administration has been spending ten of thousand of dollars on gourmet meals, airline tickets and other items – not on the patients.
Hospital Director Mivic Hirose ignored our phone calls for an interview. When we went to a town hall meeting to talk to her, the hospital’s Director of Community Relations Marc Slavin gave us some of the strangest treatment we’ve ever seen. We feature a clip in tonight’s report on ABC 7 News, but we wanted to stream the entire exchange to give you the full context. We’ll read every comment you leave.