Judge tentatively OKs sale of Westlake hospital to L.A. Times owner to create coronavirus research facility

A federal bankruptcy judge on Friday issued a tentative ruling approving the sale of a shuttered Los Angeles hospital to Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong, who plans to create a coronavirus research facility on the campus.

Judge Ernest M. Robles also signaled at a court hearing Friday that he would sign a final order approving the deal to sell St. Vincent Medical Center for $135 million to Soon-Shiong after owner Verity Health System canceled the hospital’s license. That was expected to happen in the coming days.

In his tentative ruling, Robles said he supported the transfer. “Prompt closing of the sale is necessary given the estates’ precarious financial position,” Robles wrote. “In addition, there is a risk that the purchaser will walk away if the sale does not close promptly, since the purpose of the sale — establishing a research center to address the COVID-19 pandemic — would be defeated absent a prompt closing.”

Soon-Shiong heads Culver City-based global health firm NantWorks, and owns The Times.

Read the full story on LATimes.com.