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Archive for Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Gov. Brownback issues challenge to KU Medical Center: Improve your rankings

Gov. Sam Brownback on Tuesday says that Kansas University Medical Center needs to increase its national ranking. His comments were made during an economic summit on life sciences held at KUMC.

May 24, 2011, 3:02 p.m. Updated May 24, 2011, 3:23 p.m.

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— Gov. Sam Brownback made it clear Tuesday that he wants the Kansas University Medical Center to improve its national ranking and he wants to overhaul the state tax system to attract more business.

Gov. Sam Brownback speaks with Kansas University Chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little, left, and Executive Vice Chancellor Barbara Atkinson on Tuesday at the end of the governor's economic summit on life sciences.

Gov. Sam Brownback speaks with Kansas University Chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little, left, and Executive Vice Chancellor Barbara Atkinson on Tuesday at the end of the governor's economic summit on life sciences.

Brownback's comments came during his economic summit on life sciences at KUMC.

The morning-long conference brought together more than 150 politicians, researchers, business representatives, administrators and doctors.

The stated goal was to come up with ways for Kansas to increase life sciences research to improve health care and develop more jobs.

“You have to be a global competitor if you're going to enter the field,” said Brownback. “We need to pick where we are going to compete and win at it,” he said.

The advancement of life sciences has come a long way in the region, several speakers said.

KU is about apply for National Cancer Institute designation for the KU Cancer Center.

KU Hospital has gone from near fiscal ruin in the 1990s to becoming nationally recognized for patient care.

And research dollars flowing to KUMC have increased from $69 million in 2005 to $100 million last year. The medical center's ranking by the National Institutes of Health has risen from 75th in 2006 to 60th in 2010 out of 124 ranked.

“We think we have done a lot, and we think there is a lot more to do,” said KUMC Executive Vice Chancellor Barbara Atkinson.

Brownback emphasized several times during his comments that KU needed to improve its ranking.

KU Chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little welcomed the challenge. “I endorse that,” Gray-Little said. She said it will take an extra commitment to recruit more researchers and improve the physical resources at the medical center.

Kansas Board of Regents Chairman Ed McKechnie agreed with Brownback. “A governor's job is to encourage and push. I was glad to hear: ‘We're expecting results,’” he said.

Some business leaders said it was difficult to attract venture capital to the Midwest, but others said investment money was out there waiting for the economy to settle.

Most speakers said life sciences research was on the upswing, and many expressed enthusiasm over the recent announcement by Google that Wyandotte County and Kansas City, Mo., would be the first location for the company’s ultra high-speed fiber project.

Milo Medin, vice president of access services for Google Inc., said the high-speed Internet will yield products not yet even imagined. “We believe speed is critical to innovation and competitiveness. We believe we are in the early stages of a revolution. We want to invent the future with you,” Medin said.

At the conclusion of the meeting, Brownback reiterated his call to reduce income taxes, saying that will attract more people and businesses to the state.

He said he was tired of hearing about Kansans moving to Texas and Florida, both of which have no state individual income tax. “I want to start beating the Texans and Floridians,” he said.

This was the third summit held by Brownback; the first two being on aviation and tourism. A meeting on animal health sciences will be held June 9 in Manhattan.

Comments

deec 3 years, 7 months ago

Florida and to a lesser extent Texas, also have no winter. I think Brownie should work hard on reducing winter. And improving staff and facilities at KU Med requires money, something Brownie keeps saying we're fresh out of.

bretherite 3 years, 7 months ago

if they don't do it he will take away their funding too.

newmedia 3 years, 7 months ago

If it's good enough for Gray-Little, it's good enough for me.

Bob_Keeshan 3 years, 7 months ago

If challenged, could Il Marrone provide more than one or two examples of Kansans moving to Florida or Texas because of the income tax?

Florida and Texas also have beaches, so look for Il Marrone to be pushing Clinton Lake to pour more sand on the shore. Texas has plenty of oil, not sure what Il Marrone will do about that. Florida, of course, also has the tourist mecca of Orlando.

Watch for Il Marrone to try and reboot the "Wizard of Oz" theme park idea. Plenty of tax dollars available for that project, I'm sure. Plus with a mediocre education our kids will be qualified to tear tickets and not much else.

mloburgio 3 years, 7 months ago

you can forget about a wizard of oz theme park. pious sam wants to open creationism theme park in the flint hills where everyone can ride a stage coach and help bring back those WW2 values he wants.

"When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross." -- Sinclair Lewis

walkthehawk 3 years, 7 months ago

the people of Kansas issue a challenge to Governor Brownback: put your money where your mouth is.

trinity 3 years, 7 months ago

dang i wish there was a like button!

gkerr 3 years, 7 months ago

Deed, Texas and Florida have lower taxes by far than we do. So do hard winter states like North&South Dakota, Montana, Wyoming. All have better job creation than we do per capita.

Medical school ranking has little to do with tax money heaped upon the school and everything to do with imagination, innovation, and being successful technically and economically.
Gkerr

Bob_Keeshan 3 years, 7 months ago

The source is "Comment posted by gkerr, May 24, 2011 at 4:22 pm".

Also, if gkerr thinks Medical school ranking has little to do with funding, then gkerr may want to call the folks who do the rankings and tell them to stop basing their rankings on funding and start basing them on what gkerr says.

question4u 3 years, 7 months ago

Yes, imagination is a wonderful thing. It lets you conceive of things like a top-ranked medical school where salaries are not competitive. In the imagination, the faculty whose research is evaluated for medical school rankings become ever more productive as state funding decreases. In the imagination, you can get innovation and technical and economic success without having to make any investment. Imaginary medical school rankings do have everything to do with imagination. The problem is that the medical school rankings that matter are not the imaginary ones but the real ones in which "imagination, innovation, and being successful technically and economically" are directly contingent upon funding.

kansanbygrace 3 years, 7 months ago

The dude hasn't even read the results of the very recent evaluations, in which KU Med has continued to excel, has improved its rankings, and proven it's the best hospital by far in the Midwest, and in six areas, is in the most exemplary category. He should pay attention when people who know something, and have done something, heap praise upon an institution, and instead of telling them they must improve, to maybe say, My word, maybe Kansas should try to catch up to KU Med Center, but keep up the good work. This twirp is completely out of touch.

Richard Heckler 3 years, 7 months ago

"At the conclusion of the meeting, Brownback reiterated his call to reduce income taxes, saying that will attract more people and businesses to the state.

( kansas has been reducing taxes for 20 years Mr Brownback. Reducing taxes obviously does not create jobs jobs jobs. Your way Sam cost taxpayers money when YOU give our tax dollars away)

"He said he was tired of hearing about Kansans moving to Texas and Florida, both of which have no state individual income tax. “I want to start beating the Texans and Floridians,” he said. "

(Both states have warm winters Sam Brownback. Does Sam Brownback actually know why people moved to Florida and Texas? I say he is throwing out misinformation.)

BTW Sam, Texas is building a mammoth wind project = jobs jobs jobs.

Jan Rolls 3 years, 7 months ago

Brownback needs to work on his own rating since it stands at zero.

truman1902 3 years, 7 months ago

Are you finished with that bagel Mr. Governor??

WilburM 3 years, 7 months ago

Where in all this is any mention of stem cell research? Is this part of the package? For a competitive life sciences center it has to be, yet Brownback seems completely opposed. But maybe not. Maybe he's gotten the Word.

Kontum1972 3 years, 7 months ago

so if the med center doesnt come around the Brown will have all the staff members executed or banished to the Flint Hills Death Camps.....

all the stem cells were given to the Koch Bros...for destruction...

yourworstnightmare 3 years, 7 months ago

I actually agree with Brownback here. This was not an unfunded mandate. KUMC has received money from the state in terms of a new building and funds for the Cancer cCnter.

Brownback has every right to expect KUMC to get better, and they should take his challenge seriously.

Stymie 3 years, 7 months ago

East of the Med Center?? You mean in MISSOURI?

Lana Christie-Hayes 3 years, 5 months ago

Mark my words.. coming from a very good source.. This will happen on the heals of closing down Rainbow Mental Health Center so they can expand KUMED... They've been trying to snag that property for quite some time now. Once again.. the mentally ill will suffer in the wake of "progress"!!!

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