Earlier this month, the University of Minnesota, the University of Minnesota Physicians and Fairview Health Services launched a new brand of health care, called University of Minnesota Health.
The Minnesota Daily reported Feb. 25 that the rebranding effort has increased the efficiency of information exchange through more consolidation. University of Minnesota Health consolidates health care facilities into one care model and one electronic medical record.
The centralization of records and standardizing of care systems across all University health care facilities improved the process of coordinating patient visits and helped foster a closer relationship with the Medical School. These are only a few benefits of the rebrand.
The increased collaboration between University health facilities may reignite speculation over the current and future status of the University’s relationship with Fairview Health Services.
In April 2013, University President Eric Kaler proposed a plan for the University to acquire Fairview, a merger that the Minnesota Daily Editorial Board continues to support. The Star Tribune quoted Chief Health Care Officer for the Association of American Medical Colleges Dr. Joanne Conroy, who identified a national trend of universities buying local hospitals to “create strategic partnerships.”
The streamlining of health services at the University is an important step toward creating an environment of first-rate medical care and education. The goal of competing with other world-class research institutions also means University administration and Fairview executive officers should consider a formal University acquisition.