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RocketJeff Offline
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Post: #1
The future of UTMC
It seems to me that all areas of Toledo-Metro have plenty of hospital beds except South Toledo which has two independent, failing hospitals - St Lukes and UTMC. I'm just wondering if Cleveland Clinic would be willing to take over operations of both hospitals. What I've heard from patients of CC, they'd be heavy competition for Mercy and Promedica.
05-10-2020 12:28 PM
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PaulJ Offline
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RE: The future of UTMC
For Cleveland Clinic is all about whether they view those two hospitals, or just UTMC alone, as operations that can turn a profit
05-10-2020 01:33 PM
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BearcatMan Offline
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RE: The future of UTMC
Since McClaren took over St. Lukes, their prospects have improved considerably...I could see them jumping at UTMC to create a market area in the southern half of Toledo. That becomes even more enticing when you consider their already existing and strong affiliations with CMU, MSU, and Wayne State in Michigan.
(This post was last modified: 05-10-2020 01:45 PM by BearcatMan.)
05-10-2020 01:43 PM
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UTerry Offline
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RE: The future of UTMC
Was recently told that a lot of back room and shady deals were made and conflicts of interest with those involved with the ProMedica deal. (don't understand it all so I can't explain it at this time....)

One scenario is that an employee of ProMedica is on the UT Board of Trustees, and he gains financially from the deal. (as I was told)

Two. ProMedica's "investment into UTMC" occurred at their hospitals (like all the buildings next to I-475 across Central Avenue from Toledo Hospital) instead of the UTMC campus...….

Three. The UT police is part of UTMC's budget and not being any part of main campus's budget.... UTMC totes the whole bill.....

they're are a lot more examples I can not explain at this time...…

However there is "RUMOR" of a FBI and State of Ohio investigations that are brewing...……..

Also, UTMC still has a Trauma I designation for 3 years. The UT Board of Trustees and the administration made the determination to declassify. Not the medical people....

it's being said that the merger of UT and MCO was to bail out UT and that UT's administration and the BOT afterward took all the hospitals money and wasted it. and now the administration and BOT are blaming UTMC for the budget problems. (talk around UTMC)

once again I can not begin explain it all. just what I was told...
05-11-2020 07:10 AM
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BearcatMan Offline
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RE: The future of UTMC
One of your points is true, point 2. Why else would Promedica give up $50M a year if not to benefit themselves...I mean, that's basic level understanding of how the world works.

There are no members of the BOT who are employed by Promedica, and that wouldnt be a problem if the individual was recused anyways. Most Boards are filled with industry leaders from companies who work closely with the Universities they serve. At the moment, the Board is employed or was employed prior to retirement by O-I, Dana, Welltower, Baker Law, Toledo Moulding and Die, Cooper Tire, Creadio, a private legal practice, a private dental practice, and the Jackson Foundation in Atlanta.

UTPD is under the division of Finance and Administration, a Main Campus entity. Of course, there is HSC security which is paid for by UTMC, but that is not the whole of UTPD, only a small subdivision.

The Governor and Attorney General have both said this falls under the jurisdiction of the State Board of Regents and are hands off, so I'm going to imagine they're not investigating it behind closed doors. And FBI investigation just sounds like sheer lunacy at this point.

UT Administration made the decision to move down in order to save roughly $3.2M/year since Trauma 3 designations do not require the ampunt of static resources and overlapping shift rotations/on call schedules (that require physicians to be paid FAR more working hours) than a Trauma 1. It was a financial decision, so of course it was the individuals trying to save money, not the individuals trying to collect significant paychecks and who would stand to lose those, making it.

MCO was cash poor and enrollment was dwindling, UTMC wanted a larger research footprint as their expenditures were decreasing so it benefitted both. Of course, the administrator who became UT President after the deal, Lloyd Jacobs (the president of MCO prior to the merger, so yeah, he was a little tilted to one part) raided UT's cash reserve to build two facilities on UTMC's campus that serve very little purpose and created policies that have put the University on unstable ground. Many who actually understand would say the merger cost UT much, much more than it gained. Of course UTMC/former MCO employees who are staring down new management would want to demonize the entity who oversaw them...they're probably not the best source of level-headed feedback at this time.

Also, I know asking for this on a message board setting is kind of ridiculous, but this level of false rumor mongering is potentially damaging...if you have questions, there are many on here who are intimately aware of many goings on with the University through their years of employment, service, or professional connections. Simply ask questions, rather than framing lies as truths and hiding behind the "I cant explain it but I was told" line.
(This post was last modified: 05-11-2020 07:59 AM by BearcatMan.)
05-11-2020 07:53 AM
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UTerry Offline
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RE: The future of UTMC
(05-11-2020 07:53 AM)BearcatMan Wrote:  One of your points is true, point 2. Why else would Promedica give up $50M a year if not to benefit themselves...I mean, that's basic level understanding of how the world works.

There are no members of the BOT who are employed by Promedica, and that wouldnt be a problem if the individual was recused anyways. Most Boards are filled with industry leaders from companies who work closely with the Universities they serve. At the moment, the Board is employed or was employed prior to retirement by O-I, Dana, Welltower, Baker Law, Toledo Moulding and Die, Cooper Tire, Creadio, a private legal practice, a private dental practice, and the Jackson Foundation in Atlanta.

UTPD is under the division of Finance and Administration, a Main Campus entity. Of course, there is HSC security which is paid for by UTMC, but that is not the whole of UTPD, only a small subdivision.

The Governor and Attorney General have both said this falls under the jurisdiction of the State Board of Regents and are hands off, so I'm going to imagine they're not investigating it behind closed doors. And FBI investigation just sounds like sheer lunacy at this point.

UT Administration made the decision to move down in order to save roughly $3.2M/year since Trauma 3 designations do not require the ampunt of static resources and overlapping shift rotations/on call schedules (that require physicians to be paid FAR more working hours) than a Trauma 1. It was a financial decision, so of course it was the individuals trying to save money, not the individuals trying to collect significant paychecks and who would stand to lose those, making it.

MCO was cash poor and enrollment was dwindling, UTMC wanted a larger research footprint as their expenditures were decreasing so it benefitted both. Of course, the administrator who became UT President after the deal, Lloyd Jacobs (the president of MCO prior to the merger, so yeah, he was a little tilted to one part) raided UT's cash reserve to build two facilities on UTMC's campus that serve very little purpose and created policies that have put the University on unstable ground. Many who actually understand would say the merger cost UT much, much more than it gained. Of course UTMC/former MCO employees who are staring down new management would want to demonize the entity who oversaw them...they're probably not the best source of level-headed feedback at this time.

Also, I know asking for this on a message board setting is kind of ridiculous, but this level of false rumor mongering is potentially damaging...if you have questions, there are many on here who are intimately aware of many goings on with the University through their years of employment, service, or professional connections. Simply ask questions, rather than framing lies as truths and hiding behind the "I cant explain it but I was told" line.

HIDING????????!!!!!!!!!!!!

I'm not hiding... I am repeating, not "framing" what I was told as I understand it as I tried to follow along...…....…

Yes, I was trying to ask questions...…...and those were the answers that were given....

I "DO NOT" have any answers
I "DO NOT" understand what things transpired.
I "DO NOT" understand how things transpired.
I "DO NOT" know the truths.....
I "DO NOT" know the lies...….

So, "YOU", do not accuse me of anything that I did not do...…..
I was not flying a false flag and I was very upfront here with "MY" less than understanding position on the matter....

I would appreciate an apology...…..
(This post was last modified: 05-11-2020 08:19 AM by UTerry.)
05-11-2020 08:17 AM
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BearcatMan Offline
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Post: #7
RE: The future of UTMC
There wasn't a single question asked in your post, just statements made about something without any factual backing, bookended by a line about not understanding but being told these statements.

I apologize for not discerning that these were questions framed as statements built from rumors by a one sided source. All I asked was that in the future, rather than posting these rumors as fact (which is how your post reads), just ask questions. I know of 4 other people on here, not including myself, who likely know all of these answers as well or better than I do.

I'm sorry for that last paragraph seeming hostile towards you, it's just that posting rumor as fact causes some serious issues in any forum (online or public), and using the "I dont understand them it's just what I've heard" line is a way to protect ones self while those rumors are spread further. It is happening more and more about every topic under the sun nowadays, and it just gets frustrating having to deal with. Hopefully I helped answer your questions, and if you've got anymore I know there are people on here kore than happy to answer them to ensure the unslanted truth is the primary narrative.

I do have one minor correction on my previous post...HSC Security is also paid for through Main Campus salary lines, so UTMC does not pay a cent for policing and security out of the hospital budget.
(This post was last modified: 05-11-2020 08:40 AM by BearcatMan.)
05-11-2020 08:29 AM
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Dwight Offline
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RE: The future of UTMC
Terry - Here is what I can say regarding your statements that may or may not have been questions. :)

There is an article in May 5, 2020, issue of The Chronicle of Higher Education, a national publication, outlining possible conflicts of interest, past and present, on the board of directors. According to the article, board member and later board president Steve Cavanaugh was a top executive for HCR Manorcare at the time of the 2015 votes by the board of trustees to affiliate with ProMedica. HCR Manorcare at that time was a joint-venture partner with ProMedica. In 2017, Cavanaugh was promoted to CEO of HCR Manorcare, and, shortly thereafter, ProMedica bought HCR, which had been facing possible bankruptcy. When ProMedica bought HCR, Cavanaugh became a ProMedica employee. The board of trustees then asked the state for an ethics opinion as to whether Cavanaugh could continue to vote on matters related to ProMedica. The board of trustees did not mention in its ethics inquiry that Cavanaugh had already voted on issues related to ProMedica while Cavanaugh was an executive with HCR. The Ohio Ethics Commission said that, as an employee of ProMedica, Cavanaugh should not vote on anything related to ProMedica. In 2018, Cavanaugh was promoted to chief financial officer of ProMedica and resigned his position on the UT board.

The other possible conflict involves current board president Mary Ann Pisanelli, who is a senior vice president for Welltower, a business partner of ProMedica. (The two companies jointly bought HCR's real estate division.) Pisanelli used to be a partner at Shumaker, Loop, and Kendrick, the law firm that represents ProMedica. Pisanelli was not on the board in 2015 when the affiliation agreement with ProMedica was approved.

I have no independent knowledge of any of the above, but The Chronicle of Higher Education is a well-respected publication. Unfortunately, the article can only be accessed if you have a subscription to the Chronicle.

Many people, including some doctors at UTMC, believe that the 2015 agreement benefited ProMedica to the detriment of UT. It is troubling that board member Cavanaugh stood to gain, at UT's expense, due to his connections to ProMedica. And was Cavanaugh rewarded for delivering the affiliation agreement when Promedica rescued HCR from bankruptcy and later promoted Cavanaugh to CFO? Not necessarily, of course, but it all smells bad.
05-11-2020 09:20 AM
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BearcatMan Offline
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RE: The future of UTMC
(05-11-2020 09:20 AM)Dwight Wrote:  Terry - Here is what I can say regarding your statements that may or may not have been questions. :)

There is an article in May 5, 2020, issue of The Chronicle of Higher Education, a national publication, outlining possible conflicts of interest, past and present, on the board of directors. According to the article, board member and later board president Steve Cavanaugh was a top executive for HCR Manorcare at the time of the 2015 votes by the board of trustees to affiliate with ProMedica. HCR Manorcare at that time was a joint-venture partner with ProMedica. In 2017, Cavanaugh was promoted to CEO of HCR Manorcare, and, shortly thereafter, ProMedica bought HCR, which had been facing possible bankruptcy. When ProMedica bought HCR, Cavanaugh became a ProMedica employee. The board of trustees then asked the state for an ethics opinion as to whether Cavanaugh could continue to vote on matters related to ProMedica. The board of trustees did not mention in its ethics inquiry that Cavanaugh had already voted on issues related to ProMedica while Cavanaugh was an executive with HCR. The Ohio Ethics Commission said that, as an employee of ProMedica, Cavanaugh should not vote on anything related to ProMedica. In 2018, Cavanaugh was promoted to chief financial officer of ProMedica and resigned his position on the UT board.

The other possible conflict involves current board president Mary Ann Pisanelli, who is a senior vice president for Welltower, a business partner of ProMedica. (The two companies jointly bought HCR's real estate division.) Pisanelli used to be a partner at Shumaker, Loop, and Kendrick, the law firm that represents ProMedica. Pisanelli was not on the board in 2015 when the affiliation agreement with ProMedica was approved.

I have no independent knowledge of any of the above, but The Chronicle of Higher Education is a well-respected publication. Unfortunately, the article can only be accessed if you have a subscription to the Chronicle.

Many people, including some doctors at UTMC, believe that the 2015 agreement benefited ProMedica to the detriment of UT. It is troubling that board member Cavanaugh stood to gain, at UT's expense, due to his connections to ProMedica. And was Cavanaugh rewarded for delivering the affiliation agreement when Promedica rescued HCR from bankruptcy and later promoted Cavanaugh to CFO? Not necessarily, of course, but it all smells bad.

I'm confused why any human being would think anything other than that was the case for a company to give away $50M/year, except it was to the detriment of UTMC alone, and not UT overall. OF COURSE it was to benefit ProMedica...and in the eyes of UNIVERSITY admin who should be worrying about the well-being of the University, and not a hospital they were made to take on a decade ago due to pressure to help a failing entity, losing the hospital likely helps the University as well, so "detriment" is a matter of perception. The University was essentially getting $50M/year to piecemeal out an entity they have never wanted, and they'll get a windfall payment at the end of it...to me, that's a hell of a deal.

Also, the Ethics Commission cleared the previous votes by Cavanaugh as he was not an employee of ProMedica at the time, and was not affiliated with ProMedica in his role at HCR, so there is no argument there, unless you want to see if the Ohio Ethics Commission was acting unethically too.
05-11-2020 09:29 AM
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Dwight Offline
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RE: The future of UTMC
(05-11-2020 09:29 AM)BearcatMan Wrote:  
(05-11-2020 09:20 AM)Dwight Wrote:  Terry - Here is what I can say regarding your statements that may or may not have been questions. :)

There is an article in May 5, 2020, issue of The Chronicle of Higher Education, a national publication, outlining possible conflicts of interest, past and present, on the board of directors. According to the article, board member and later board president Steve Cavanaugh was a top executive for HCR Manorcare at the time of the 2015 votes by the board of trustees to affiliate with ProMedica. HCR Manorcare at that time was a joint-venture partner with ProMedica. In 2017, Cavanaugh was promoted to CEO of HCR Manorcare, and, shortly thereafter, ProMedica bought HCR, which had been facing possible bankruptcy. When ProMedica bought HCR, Cavanaugh became a ProMedica employee. The board of trustees then asked the state for an ethics opinion as to whether Cavanaugh could continue to vote on matters related to ProMedica. The board of trustees did not mention in its ethics inquiry that Cavanaugh had already voted on issues related to ProMedica while Cavanaugh was an executive with HCR. The Ohio Ethics Commission said that, as an employee of ProMedica, Cavanaugh should not vote on anything related to ProMedica. In 2018, Cavanaugh was promoted to chief financial officer of ProMedica and resigned his position on the UT board.

The other possible conflict involves current board president Mary Ann Pisanelli, who is a senior vice president for Welltower, a business partner of ProMedica. (The two companies jointly bought HCR's real estate division.) Pisanelli used to be a partner at Shumaker, Loop, and Kendrick, the law firm that represents ProMedica. Pisanelli was not on the board in 2015 when the affiliation agreement with ProMedica was approved.

I have no independent knowledge of any of the above, but The Chronicle of Higher Education is a well-respected publication. Unfortunately, the article can only be accessed if you have a subscription to the Chronicle.

Many people, including some doctors at UTMC, believe that the 2015 agreement benefited ProMedica to the detriment of UT. It is troubling that board member Cavanaugh stood to gain, at UT's expense, due to his connections to ProMedica. And was Cavanaugh rewarded for delivering the affiliation agreement when Promedica rescued HCR from bankruptcy and later promoted Cavanaugh to CFO? Not necessarily, of course, but it all smells bad.

I'm confused why any human being would think anything other than that was the case for a company to give away $50M/year, except it was to the detriment of UTMC alone, and not UT overall. OF COURSE it was to benefit ProMedica...and in the eyes of UNIVERSITY admin who should be worrying about the well-being of the University, and not a hospital they were made to take on a decade ago due to pressure to help a failing entity, losing the hospital likely helps the University as well, so "detriment" is a matter of perception. The University was essentially getting $50M/year to piecemeal out an entity they have never wanted, and they'll get a windfall payment at the end of it...to me, that's a hell of a deal.

Also, the Ethics Commission cleared the previous votes by Cavanaugh as he was not an employee of ProMedica at the time, and was not affiliated with ProMedica in his role at HCR, so there is no argument there, unless you want to see if the Ohio Ethics Commission was acting unethically too.

Can you tell me where to look to confirm that the Ethics Commission said Cavanaugh's 2015 votes were OK? The Chronicle article implied that the Ethics Commission had never been asked to weigh in on those votes, but rather had given an opinion only as to future votes after he was employed by ProMedica. I am not saying that the Ohio Ethics Commission is unethical. I am saying that it appears that Cavanaugh stood to benefit personally from seeing the 2015 affiliation agreement go through, and in fact he has benefited by having HCR saved from bankruptcy and by getting promoted to CFO of ProMedica. If ProMedica had been annoyed at Cavanaugh for voting against the affiliation agreement, would those things still have happened? We will never know the answer, but you can see why some people are concerned about conflict of interest. Several local state legislators, including Teresa Fedor, are asking for further inquiry.
05-11-2020 11:56 AM
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BearcatMan Offline
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Post: #11
RE: The future of UTMC
(05-11-2020 11:56 AM)Dwight Wrote:  
(05-11-2020 09:29 AM)BearcatMan Wrote:  
(05-11-2020 09:20 AM)Dwight Wrote:  Terry - Here is what I can say regarding your statements that may or may not have been questions. :)

There is an article in May 5, 2020, issue of The Chronicle of Higher Education, a national publication, outlining possible conflicts of interest, past and present, on the board of directors. According to the article, board member and later board president Steve Cavanaugh was a top executive for HCR Manorcare at the time of the 2015 votes by the board of trustees to affiliate with ProMedica. HCR Manorcare at that time was a joint-venture partner with ProMedica. In 2017, Cavanaugh was promoted to CEO of HCR Manorcare, and, shortly thereafter, ProMedica bought HCR, which had been facing possible bankruptcy. When ProMedica bought HCR, Cavanaugh became a ProMedica employee. The board of trustees then asked the state for an ethics opinion as to whether Cavanaugh could continue to vote on matters related to ProMedica. The board of trustees did not mention in its ethics inquiry that Cavanaugh had already voted on issues related to ProMedica while Cavanaugh was an executive with HCR. The Ohio Ethics Commission said that, as an employee of ProMedica, Cavanaugh should not vote on anything related to ProMedica. In 2018, Cavanaugh was promoted to chief financial officer of ProMedica and resigned his position on the UT board.

The other possible conflict involves current board president Mary Ann Pisanelli, who is a senior vice president for Welltower, a business partner of ProMedica. (The two companies jointly bought HCR's real estate division.) Pisanelli used to be a partner at Shumaker, Loop, and Kendrick, the law firm that represents ProMedica. Pisanelli was not on the board in 2015 when the affiliation agreement with ProMedica was approved.

I have no independent knowledge of any of the above, but The Chronicle of Higher Education is a well-respected publication. Unfortunately, the article can only be accessed if you have a subscription to the Chronicle.

Many people, including some doctors at UTMC, believe that the 2015 agreement benefited ProMedica to the detriment of UT. It is troubling that board member Cavanaugh stood to gain, at UT's expense, due to his connections to ProMedica. And was Cavanaugh rewarded for delivering the affiliation agreement when Promedica rescued HCR from bankruptcy and later promoted Cavanaugh to CFO? Not necessarily, of course, but it all smells bad.

I'm confused why any human being would think anything other than that was the case for a company to give away $50M/year, except it was to the detriment of UTMC alone, and not UT overall. OF COURSE it was to benefit ProMedica...and in the eyes of UNIVERSITY admin who should be worrying about the well-being of the University, and not a hospital they were made to take on a decade ago due to pressure to help a failing entity, losing the hospital likely helps the University as well, so "detriment" is a matter of perception. The University was essentially getting $50M/year to piecemeal out an entity they have never wanted, and they'll get a windfall payment at the end of it...to me, that's a hell of a deal.

Also, the Ethics Commission cleared the previous votes by Cavanaugh as he was not an employee of ProMedica at the time, and was not affiliated with ProMedica in his role at HCR, so there is no argument there, unless you want to see if the Ohio Ethics Commission was acting unethically too.

Can you tell me where to look to confirm that the Ethics Commission said Cavanaugh's 2015 votes were OK? The Chronicle article implied that the Ethics Commission had never been asked to weigh in on those votes, but rather had given an opinion only as to future votes after he was employed by ProMedica. I am not saying that the Ohio Ethics Commission is unethical. I am saying that it appears that Cavanaugh stood to benefit personally from seeing the 2015 affiliation agreement go through, and in fact he has benefited by having HCR saved from bankruptcy and by getting promoted to CFO of ProMedica. If ProMedica had been annoyed at Cavanaugh for voting against the affiliation agreement, would those things still have happened? We will never know the answer, but you can see why some people are concerned about conflict of interest. Several local state legislators, including Teresa Fedor, are asking for further inquiry.

Causality is an extremely hard thing to argue for in that situation. The 2 years between that vote and any direct affiliation between Cavanaugh and ProMedica would make it almost impossible to directly argue any sort of ethics violation...now were he to make those votes AFTER his direct affiliation, you've got a cold lock ethics violation which is why he recused himself and ended up resigning to ensure nothing happened that could be considered a violation. Since there was no specific way for him to determine that his company would go under and be absorbed by another entity, it is exceedingly difficult to tie that bow in a legal setting and would unless there is any express documentation there really wouldn't be any argument.

The "business partner" argument is equally flimsy. Essentially, you are arguing that an individual agreed upon something that was not in the best interest of their post, but was int he best interest of a company they have no direct interest in. Now, were you to bring up Ms. Pisanelli's standing at Welltower and the continuous relationship they have based upon their major gift to UT/The UT Foundation, that she was brought on into Welltower in July 2017 after being on UT's board since late 2015, and Welltower donated their large professional estate on Door St. in September 2017, I would LOVE to see that discussion, but the ProMedica one is far to flimsy of a connection/causality.

And if you want to see any shady potentially poorly ethically motivated people, look at those connected on the other side...you mention local politcal persons who are in staunch disagreement with the sale of UTMC.

Teresa Fedor and Paula Hicks Hudons have received some of their most significant funding support from AFSCME...the Union who oversees all non-medical staff at UTMC (the largest portion of that Union's employee base in the area).

Carty Finkbenier's wife, Amy, was an employee at UTMC for a significant amount of time until financial constraints had them eliminate her position...you think there's an axe to grind there?

Mayor Wade is just calling for a financial audit because he understands what those numbers will bear out. He also sees that a sale of the hospital will do nothing to the general operations outside of having an actual health care management company come in and do what they do best, rather than trying to have an anthropologist or urban planning PhD try to run it.

And don't even get me started on the fact that this has been known for years and these people only started getting loud in an election year 03-lmfao. Clearly Kaptur's friends have gotten to Block Communications based on their recommendation that she be the next University President (one of the dumbest possible decisions I could think of).

Look, I'm in no way shape or form saying this was completely clean...but regardless of what happened in the past,the BOT need to worry about the future of the University. Seeing that a hospital that is losing money (for whatever reasons notwithstanding) is running up an operating budget over half of the overall budget of the University, and knowing significant cuts are coming, they need to dumb the dead weight.
(This post was last modified: 05-11-2020 12:34 PM by BearcatMan.)
05-11-2020 12:33 PM
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rocket 51 Offline
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Post: #12
RE: The future of UTMC
https://www.chronicle.com/article/How-an...tal/248704

Not sure if this will translate but her is a copy/paste attempt for the Chronicle article. IMO Best overview of the situation that is out there with out anything to gain.
05-11-2020 12:35 PM
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eastisbest Offline
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Post: #13
RE: The future of UTMC
As an outsider who is not one "who are intimately aware of many goings on with the University through their years of employment, service, or professional connections."

I didn't take anything in UTerry's post as stating fact. To me it was clearly laid out as conjecture/rumor.

Your statement that he then approach on this board those aware people by
"Simply ask questions," is kind of accomplishing exactly what you accuse him of unless someone were to presuppose those people would lie about any potentialy damaging information, if it existed and was in their knowledge base.

"framing lies as truths " at no point did he state he had personal knowledge. The writing was clunky, any evil intent not clear, on that I would agree.

Yeah, message boards can be damaging. I mean, just look at the actual facts that have been exposed as result of his post.

When the merger was announced, my presumption was that 50 million was going into MCO, not Promedica's planned highway overlook. Would you sell a car to someone with the condition that you're going to return the money to the car's new owner so they can buy some Au-inlay seat covers for their old car?

Combined with the information Dwight brought to the table, to me an outsider, This merger looks very damaging and shady and individually self-serving. It does not seem to me that UTMC's survival let alone prosperity is in ProMed's best economic interest. Their interest is best served if it dies on the vine to be replaced by ProMed's services.
05-11-2020 12:35 PM
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rocket 51 Offline
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RE: The future of UTMC
Sorry but it did not translate....
05-11-2020 12:36 PM
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BearcatMan Offline
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Post: #15
RE: The future of UTMC
(05-11-2020 12:35 PM)eastisbest Wrote:  As an outsider who is not one "who are intimately aware of many goings on with the University through their years of employment, service, or professional connections."

I didn't take anything in UTerry's post as stating fact. To me it was clearly laid out as conjecture/rumor.

Your statement that he then approach on this board those aware people by
"Simply ask questions," is kind of accomplishing exactly what you accuse him of unless someone were to presuppose those people would lie about any potentialy damaging information, if it existed and was in their knowledge base.

"framing lies as truths " at no point did he state he had personal knowledge. The writing was clunky, any evil intent not clear, on that I would agree.

Yeah, message boards can be damaging. I mean, just look at the actual facts that have been exposed as result of his post.

When the merger was announced, my presumption was that 50 million was going into MCO, not Promedica's planned highway overlook. Would you sell a car to someone with the condition that you're going to return the money to the car's new owner so they can buy some Au-inlay seat covers for their old car?

Combined with the information Dwight brought to the table, to me an outsider, This merger looks very damaging and shady and individually self-serving. It does not seem to me that UTMC's survival let alone prosperity is in ProMed's best economic interest. Their interest is best served if it dies on the vine to be replaced by ProMed's services.

What do you mean by MCO? The hospital of the academic college of medicine? It is going to both entities when it was only supposed to go to one. The $50M was originally agreed upon to support the College of Medicine, and half is, but roughly half is being diverted to the hospital, which was not stated in the agreement, in order to float costs. The fact that that is being done not only hurts the College of Medicine, but also costs the University significant funds in this specific time of need.

Once again...you're completely right about what you're saying. UTMC's survival is definitely not in the best interest of a competitor I'm not sure what's so earth-shattering about that...if it ends up becoming a ProMedica facility, they paid $250M over 5 years plus whatever their cash offering for the facility is. To me, that's well above market rate for that hospital.
05-11-2020 12:42 PM
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BearcatMan Offline
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RE: The future of UTMC
(05-11-2020 12:35 PM)rocket 51 Wrote:  https://www.chronicle.com/article/How-an...tal/248704

Not sure if this will translate but her is a copy/paste attempt for the Chronicle article. IMO Best overview of the situation that is out there with out anything to gain.

That is a very effective piece giving out a lot of good information, thanks for sharing.
05-11-2020 12:44 PM
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rocket 51 Offline
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Post: #17
RE: The future of UTMC
The Chronicle of Higher Education

In late March, as the coronavirus pandemic swept the globe, a tiny bit of good news surfaced in Northwest Ohio.

The University of Toledo Medical Center announced that its molecular-diagnostics laboratory, which detects and monitors infectious disease, was providing faster testing for the virus — producing results in 48 hours or less. Previously, local results had taken as long as eight days.

It was a reminder of the vital role that hospitals serve in fighting the pandemic on the ground, in their communities — in this case, a public hospital run by a public university in South Toledo. But the hospital itself, known as UTMC, faces an uncertain future because of dwindling services and shaky finances.

It may be sold. It might even close its doors.

Local residents are angry. Activists and former elected officials who have organized to save the hospital blame a $2.5-billion partnership deal that the university’s Board of Trustees signed in 2015 with ProMedica, a regional hospital chain. The agreement sent most of UTMC’s doctors and residents to ProMedica in exchange for cash payments and upgraded medical-school facilities.

At the center of the debate are a pair of uncomfortable questions: Did the trustees approve and execute an agreement that gave unfair advantages to ProMedica? And did two of the trustees involved have conflicts of interest with the hospital chain?

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The FBI is scrutinizing the 2015 affiliation agreement, the largest contract in the university’s history, according to a source with knowledge of the inquiry. A spokeswoman for the agency’s Cleveland division declined to confirm or deny that an investigation is taking place.

If the 210-bed university hospital shuts down, it could happen at a time when coronavirus is still a widespread health crisis, with the possibility of a second wave of infections in the fall or winter. The loss of hospital beds could become a big problem.

Even before coronavirus struck, the hospital was in the red, with a projected budget deficit of $25 million this fiscal year. That deficit is increasing, and could even double, thanks to the virus.

“COVID-19 is exacerbating the financial problems of the hospital,” Sharon L. Gaber, the University of Toledo’s president, wrote last month in an emailed response to questions from The Chronicle. The president said current estimates “indicate we are losing $1 million per week during this pandemic.”

The university is weighing its options, Gaber wrote: “No final decisions regarding the hospital have been made. We expect this process to take several months, and to date, we do not yet have recommendations for next steps.”

Adding to the uncertainty: the university announced in late April that Gaber is resigning as president to take a job as chancellor of the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. The effective date of her resignation is still being negotiated.

Academic medical centers were once reliable moneymakers for universities, but they have become a risky bet: Such hospitals charge higher fees to help fund instruction and research, and that makes them less attractive to the exchange-based insurance networks created under 2010’s Affordable Care Act.

Independent hospitals also have a tough time surviving in this era of hospital chains and consolidation.

In an op-ed in The Toledo Blade, S. Amjad Hussain, a former trustee and an emeritus professor of surgery and humanities at Toledo, argued that the hospital’s predicament requires urgent action. One-time federal stimulus dollars won’t be enough to stop it from hemorrhaging money, he wrote, emphasizing that the era of small academic medical centers is “long gone.”

Last month the university issued a formal request for proposals ‘for a potential acquisition, lease, management agreement or other transaction of its community hospital.”

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Companies have until June 10 to submit a proposal, and the university’s timeline suggests a decision on the hospital’s fate could be reached as soon as August.

The university’s announcement cited “ongoing fiscal challenges, exacerbated further by the COVID-19 pandemic.”

But the problems at UTMC, some say, are mostly self-inflicted.

Critics of the ProMedica deal complain it was one-sided in the hospital chain's favor, as most of UTMC’s doctors and residents shifted to either ProMedica Toledo Hospital or its adjoining ProMedica Russell J. Ebeid Children’s Hospital.

By next year, the agreement calls for more than 270 of the medical school’s 328 resident programs to be housed at ProMedica facilities instead of in the university’s own public hospital.

In exchange for giving up its doctors and residents, the university received large sums from ProMedica: $250 million for medical-school campus development, and annual payments of roughly $50 million a year. Some of that construction money, however, can be spent on ProMedica’s own properties, since they are now part of the larger “campus.”

For medical-school students, the agreement carried some positives, as it expanded local hospital residency options. President Gaber said the “capacity constraints” of the university hospital threatened to limit the medical school’s growth.

Thanks to the affiliation agreement, Gaber said, the medical school has increased its total number of residents and fellows to a projected 367 next year, from 320 today. And the number of students staying in Toledo to perform residencies has more than doubled.

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“All of this translates into better access to physicians right here in our community ­­–– now and in the future,” Gaber wrote.

But the university hospital has struggled to replace the exodus of doctors. Five more residency programs, including orthopedic surgery and pediatrics, are scheduled to leave for ProMedica in July.

“The agreement is clearly benefiting ProMedica significantly more at this time, and to date, than it is the campus in South Toledo,” said Carty Finkbeiner, a former Toledo mayor who is one of the organizers of the Save UTMC Citizens Group. “There is no question. That isn’t up for debate.”

More than 2,500 people have signed an online petition to save the hospital.

If a potential buyer expresses interest in UTMC, the affiliation agreement guarantees ProMedica the right to submit a competing bid, and the university must accept ProMedica’s proposal if it “substantially meets UT’s objectives.”

ProMedica did not respond to questions emailed by The Chronicle. A spokeswoman for the hospital chain, Tausha Moore, said it is focused on coronavirus, and “we aren’t doing any interviews that are not Covid-19-related until this is all over.”

Meanwhile, questions surround the financial connections between ProMedica and two members of the University of Toledo Board of Trustees.

One former trustee, Steve Cavanaugh, was a top executive with HCR ManorCare, a joint-venture partner of ProMedica’s at the time. The two entities teamed up on a nursing home at another ProMedica hospital.

That means ProMedica was a business associate of Cavanaugh’s company while he was serving on the university’s board.

Cavanaugh nevertheless voted twice on the 2015 affiliation agreement between ProMedica and Toledo’s medical school — first to begin negotiations in the spring and then to approve the contract that summer.

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Both decisions were approved by the board unanimously. At the time, Cavanaugh was an executive vice president and chief operating officer for HCR ManorCare, the nation’s second-largest nursing-home chain.

He was promoted to chief executive in 2017, two months after becoming chair of the university Board of Trustees.

The following year, his nursing-home company was teetering on the edge of bankruptcy. ProMedica bought the financially troubled firm for $1.4 billion — $300 million in cash and the assumption of $1.1 billion of ManorCare’s debt.

The university asked the state that year for an ethics opinion regarding Cavanaugh and whether he could continue to be involved with issues related to ProMedica, given that it had just acquired his company and he was about to become a ProMedica employee.

The university’s inquiry to the ethics body did not mention Cavanaugh’s two votes in 2015 for the affiliation agreement, nor did it mention that ProMedica had paid more than a billion dollars to buy his company. It merely stated that Cavanaugh was about to become a ProMedica employee.

Amy E. Voigt, The Blade
The U. of Toledo Medical Center is losing an estimated $1 million per week during the pandemic, the university’s president said.
That was enough for the Ohio Ethics Commission to recommend that Cavanaugh recuse himself from board activities related to ProMedica’s affiliation agreement. The commission wrote that “a public official who is in the position of making, or influencing, an official decision regarding the interests of his private employer would have an inherent conflict of interest impairing his objectivity and independence of judgement.”

Cavanaugh became a ProMedica employee, and remained on the board. Records show that he began recusing himself from votes related to the hospital.

A year later, ProMedica promoted Cavanaugh to be chief financial officer for the entire hospital chain, and he resigned from the university board of trustees.

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Cavanaugh did not respond to phone calls or an email from The Chronicle requesting comment.

Cavanaugh’s successor as board chair is Mary Ellen Pisanelli. Pisanelli is a senior vice president at Welltower Inc., a business partner with ProMedica. The two firms teamed up in 2018 to buy the real-estate arm of HCR Manorcare, the nursing-home company that Cavanaugh led.

ProMedica and Welltower spun off that real-estate venture into a separate jointly held company called Meerkat.

The Ohio Ethics Commission, in response to a university inquiry, found that Pisanelli can continue to be involved with decisions involving ProMedica’s affiliation agreement — so long as medical-school students aren’t taught on Meerkat property.

Before working at Welltower, Pisanelli was a partner at the law firm Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick. Among the firm’s clients: ProMedica.

Pisanelli did not respond to written questions submitted by The Chronicle, but she released a short statement that noted the ProMedica affiliation was approved prior to her joining the board.

“I, and the other members of the board, are honored to serve as stewards of The University of Toledo, and are committed to protecting and supporting the advancement of the University’s educational mission,” she wrote. “We hold ourselves to the highest ethical standards, following all state and federal laws including those regarding open and transparent proceedings.”

In the past few months, the university board repeatedly held closed-door meetings under an “executive session” exemption to state open-government laws, which allows for private discussion of trade secrets or “sale of property.” The board has held six such meetings since November.

State Sen. Teresa Fedor, a Democrat whose district includes UTMC, said the conflict-of-interest questions surrounding the ProMedica deal merit a closer look.

“I believe that the ball was dropped in many different ways,” Fedor said. “It tilted against the public good.”

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A year ago, an emergency-room physician at UTMC wrote to the special investigations unit of the Ohio state auditor. Geoff Mitchell asked the auditors to closely examine the finances of Cavanaugh and Pisanelli, as well as any potential conflicts of interest involving the ProMedica affiliation.

The hospital was clearly harmed by the deal, Mitchell wrote.

“With only a small percentage of doctors remaining, nursing units have closed and UTMC cannot function as it did,” Mitchell wrote. “It is but a shell of the state teaching hospital it once was.”

The state auditor wrote back and said the matter had been referred to the Ohio Ethics Commission and Ohio’s inspector general.

Two months later, UTMC announced that it would downgrade its trauma center status from the highest classification, Level I, to Level III. A Level I trauma center has 24-hour in-house coverage by general surgeons and is equipped to handle the most severe cases. Level III status requires only the “prompt availability” of surgeons.

UTMC had held Level I status for more than 25 years.

When making the announcement, Daniel Barbee, the hospital’s chief executive at the time, said the change was part of a larger strategy to shift UTMC into more of a community-hospital model, although Barbee said that the facility would still be a teaching hospital, too.

“The city's population is 280,000 and we have three Level I centers,” Barbee told The Blade, Toledo’s daily newspaper. “Columbus has 900,000 people and they have only two. Cincinnati has only one.”

Barbee resigned in March from his post as CEO. He declined an interview request from The Chronicle.

Losing Level I status was a wake-up call for the hospital’s employees, said Randy Desposito, president of Local 2415 of the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees. Desposito remembers attending a 2015 town hall where employees were first told about the new ProMedica partnership.

The deal was framed, he said, as a way to offer “a much greater teaching experience.”

But in the years that followed, Desposito said, certain clinics at UTMC moved to a half-day schedule. Over time, some clinics disappeared altogether. And there were fewer open-heart surgeries and other trauma procedures taking place.

One possible lifeline going forward: The university’s Board of Trustees voted in March to remove the requirement that UTMC medical-staff members hold a faculty appointment. That change, while further eroding the facility’s “teaching hospital” identity, opens the door for more local doctors to be based there. So far, a dozen new community physicians have applied for practice rights at the hospital.

“We’ve got everything that a hospital needs to operate, except for the physicians,” Desposito said. “And the physicians are the ones that bring the patients, that bring the revenue.”

Michael Vasquez is a senior investigative reporter. Follow him on Twitter @MrMikeVasquez, or email him at michael.vasquez@chronicle.com.
05-11-2020 12:46 PM
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eastisbest Offline
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Post: #18
RE: The future of UTMC
(05-11-2020 12:42 PM)BearcatMan Wrote:  
(05-11-2020 12:35 PM)eastisbest Wrote:  As an outsider who is not one "who are intimately aware of many goings on with the University through their years of employment, service, or professional connections."

I didn't take anything in UTerry's post as stating fact. To me it was clearly laid out as conjecture/rumor.

Your statement that he then approach on this board those aware people by
"Simply ask questions," is kind of accomplishing exactly what you accuse him of unless someone were to presuppose those people would lie about any potentialy damaging information, if it existed and was in their knowledge base.

"framing lies as truths " at no point did he state he had personal knowledge. The writing was clunky, any evil intent not clear, on that I would agree.

Yeah, message boards can be damaging. I mean, just look at the actual facts that have been exposed as result of his post.

When the merger was announced, my presumption was that 50 million was going into MCO, not Promedica's planned highway overlook. Would you sell a car to someone with the condition that you're going to return the money to the car's new owner so they can buy some Au-inlay seat covers for their old car?

Combined with the information Dwight brought to the table, to me an outsider, This merger looks very damaging and shady and individually self-serving. It does not seem to me that UTMC's survival let alone prosperity is in ProMed's best economic interest. Their interest is best served if it dies on the vine to be replaced by ProMed's services.

What do you mean by MCO?

That pretty little campus being discussed and the programs housed THERE, is what I refer to by MCO.
05-11-2020 01:22 PM
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eastisbest Offline
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Post: #19
RE: The future of UTMC
(05-11-2020 12:42 PM)BearcatMan Wrote:  .you're completely right about what you're saying. UTMC's survival is definitely not in the best interest of a competitor I'm not sure what's so earth-shattering about that...if it ends up becoming a ProMedica facility, they paid $250M over 5 years plus whatever their cash offering for the facility is. To me, that's well above market rate for that hospital.

What's earth-shattering is the news that UTMC was selling itself into oblivion with intent, presuming your information correct. If they were buying the hospital then wouldn't it be reasonable to presume they'll come under the same anti-trust action that just derailed their effort with St. Luke's?

Anti-Trust
05-11-2020 01:29 PM
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Dwight Offline
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Post: #20
RE: The future of UTMC
Bearcat, I have no argument with you about the right thing to do now. UT needs to unload the hospital. I also understand what you are saying about Carty Finkbeiner and our elected officials having their personal reasons for doing what they are doing. Nonetheless, the Chronicle article gives pause, I think, as to past decisions, even though it does not appear that anything illegal happened. Thanks, rocket 51, for posting the article.

Bearcat, you didn't answer the question that I asked. If the Ethics Commission affirmatively said that it was fine for Cavanaugh to vote on the affiliation agreement in 2015, I would love to know where to find that opinion. I went to the Ohio Ethics Commission website and searched "University of Toledo," but all of the opinions that came up were well before 2015. (I didn't find the 2017 opinion referenced in the article, either, so it would seem that there is something wrong with the way I am searching.)
05-11-2020 01:31 PM
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