The University of Cincinnati is asking for a seat at the table in deciding how 470-bed Christ Hospital, Cincinnati, will extract itself from its membership in the six-hospital Health Alliance of Greater Cincinnati.
The UCs intention is to help facilitate an equitable transition for all Health Alliance hospitals while preserving quality healthcare for our community, University President Nancy Zimpher said in a statement. In 1995, the school transferred management of University Hospital to the Health Alliance.
A judge ruled last month in Hamilton County (Ohio) Court of Common Pleas that Christ Hospitals contract allows the hospital to terminate its involvement, which the alliance sued to prevent. The ruling also applies to St. Luke Hospital East in Fort Thomas, Ky., and St. Luke Hospital West in Florence, Ky., which also seek to leave the alliance.
The judge has yet to rule on a remedy that would guide the separation. A hearing is scheduled for Friday afternoon.
According to the universitys motion filed Wednesday, the late request to get involved was provoked by Christ Hospitals newly proposed remedies, which include a direct threat to dissolve the entire organization of the Health Alliance.
Christ spokeswoman Ria Davidson, though, said the only remedies Christ Hospital has proposed were outlined in a brief filed April 2, weeks before the judge ruled on the case.
University spokesman Richard Puff said the alliance provides critical information technology and financial services to its member hospitals. We certainly are very interested in keeping those services going so those hospitals can complete their missions, Puff said.
The Health Alliance would welcome the university to the process, alliance spokeswoman Gail Myers said. -- by Gregg Blesch