The deal that will shape the future relationship between Kansas University's medical school and its main teaching hospital won't be finished by a May 31 deadline set earlier this spring.
In a meeting Tuesday, KU Hospital's board voted unanimously to keep negotiations open with KU Medical Center and reaffirmed its commitment to a set of "guiding principles" that give a sense of how a final deal might look.
But talks will continue into the summer as KU Hospital leaders try to strike a deal that ensures the hospital won't be harmed by the medical school's ongoing plans to build a new partnership with St. Luke's Hospital in Kansas City, Mo.
"It was clear that there would not be an agreement by May 31," KU Hospital spokesman Dennis McCulloch said. "These are complicated, complex issues, and the board expressed that it was more important to get them right rather than to get them by the deadline."
The board had set the May 31 deadline only after a March 31 deadline passed with no resolution.
"It's important to have goals in mind, but ultimately the goal is about having the right agreement in place," said Amy Jordan Wooden, a spokeswoman for KUMC.
In essence, KU Hospital and the medical school are negotiating how much money KU Hospital will contribute to the school's academic efforts in coming years, who will oversee the outpatient clinics at the hospital complex and how far the school will be able to go in its planned partnership with St. Luke's, which has raised alarm among KU Hospital leaders.