Archive for Thursday, October 18, 2007

Regents approve KUMC affiliation with St. Luke’s

October 18, 2007, 9:28 a.m. Updated October 18, 2007, 11:40 a.m.


The Kansas Board of Regents Thursday unanimously approved the final affiliation agreement between St. Luke's Hospital and Kansas University Medical Center.

With their approval, and the approval in principle of St. Luke's that came last month, the agreement should be able to go into effect. The agreement includes a $1 millon payment each year from St. Luke's to KUMC for "unrestricted mission support" - money that can be spent at the discretion of KUMC Executive Vice Chancellor Barabara Atkinson.

"We do a lot of important things on this board. If I look at the past or even the future, I can't imagine anything that will have a greater impact on the quality of life of Kansas families," regents chairwoman Christine Downey-Schmidt said. "I'm hopeful and very glad to be a part of advancing this issue. I hope the continued delays and the political maneuvering and unjustified protests will fade away and we get along with finding cures."

The affiliation also includes a baseline expenditure of $15 million per year by St. Luke's for current clinical and research activities currently taking place at the hospital.

"I'd say we're very happy with the agreement, but we recognize we still have a long way to go," KU Chancellor Robert Hemenway said.

The affiliation agreement, which was disclosed in draft form at last month's KU Hospital Authority board meeting, has generated a lot of angst among the hospital community. KU Hospital leaders are concerned that this affiliation could damage the hospital as it competes with St. Luke's for patients and in other clinical operations.

Hemenway and Atkinson, when probed by the board, said this agreement was the first step in providing more doctors to Kansas and more access to cancer clinical research trials.

"This agreement will expand our ability to train more doctors at KU, helping to meet the state's growing need for health professionals. It will also enhance research collaborations, which are vital to our effort to make new treatments available to Kansans," Hemenway said in a press release.

KU's full press release describing the agreement can be found here. KU has also released the full agreement with St. Luke's. More details as they develop.


erod0723 10 years, 5 months ago

"Hemenway and Atkinson, when probed by the board, said this agreement was the first step in providing more doctors to Kansas and more access to cancer clinical research trials."

This agreement was the first step in providing more money in the pockets of people like Hemenway and Atkinson, to the detriment of KU Hospital. KU should be supporting KU ventures, not cohorting with the competition. I was a fan of Hemenway for a time, but this controversy has led me to believe that perhaps we need a different person in charge at KU.

huntershaven 10 years, 5 months ago

The St. Luke's health network works toward the betterment of the communities and patients that it serves. With the purchasing power of the system there is easier and better access to cutting edge technology that a single or smaller group of hospitals could not afford or would be charged a high price to lease.

If competing for patients is all that matters to a hospital then I would not want to seek treatment there. I prefer to have medical treatment focused on helping me rather than trying to take all the money out of my wallet.

guesswho 10 years, 5 months ago

This will not be detrimental to KU Hospital (which, as I understand it, is not supported by tax dollars and is a separate entity) or the people of Kansas. KUMC needs this affiliation to help attract better physicians, more resources, and better medical students. What if doctors at St. Luke's have better methods for serving rural Missourians? That would be great to more easily transfer that knowledge to physicians in Kansas to help serve rural Kansans. Let's keep the border war only in sports and work more collaboratively with the greater Kansas City area.

DonnieDarko 10 years, 5 months ago

"In related news: Dolph Simons was once again hard at work grinding his axe in preparation for yet another editorial blasting the agreement."

not_dolph 10 years, 5 months ago

That was a good one Donnie - where's Uhlrck today?

dirkleisure 10 years, 5 months ago

Yes, "cohorting" with the competition.

Or, you know, expanding the brand.

We should embrace this and all moves by the University to expand its brand the influence into new and profitable markets.

Any arguments to the contrary are anti American. I, for one, love my country and love my freedom.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.