L.A. NOW

Southern California -- this just in

« Previous Post | L.A. NOW Home | Next Post »

L.A. County's health director steps down

April 10, 2008 |  5:14 pm

ChernofLos Angeles County's ailing public health system was back in the emergency room this afternoon. Embattled health services director Dr. Bruce A. Chernof abruptly announced his resignation as the department faces a huge deficit. Chernof was on the job for only about two years before announcing his exit. Times reporters are working on a full story.

The departure was made public hours after the county announced that the only viable candidate to reopen Martin Luther King Jr.-Harbor Hospital in Willowbrook had pulled out of the running. Despite never having run a large healthcare system, the low-key Chernof was hired by the county Board of Supervisors with high hopes of turning the department around.

At the time of his appointment in May 2006, Chernof said, "I really love this system," citing its mission to serve the community's neediest patients. "It's a challenge. But it's worth it."

—Jesus Sanchez

Photo: Los Angeles Times