U of Minnesota board approves $950M request to fund acquisition

The University of Minnesota board of regents has approved a legislative request to fund the reacquisition and initial operations of the university's healthcare facilities on its Minneapolis campus.

The preliminary request for the State of Minnesota to support the university's health system, UMN Health, aims to acquire flagship healthcare facilities — the University Medical Center East and West Bank facilities, Masonic Children's Hospital and its clinics and surgery center — and operate the flagship facilities. The investment would also include the transfer of facilities and funding for workforce needs, union contracts and new leadership for a university-operated organization.

The move would significantly alter the university's relationship with Minneapolis-based Fairview Health Services amid its proposed merger with Sioux Falls, S.D.-based Sanford Health. University officials oppose the merger. 

"The stakes are high for us all," board chair Ken Powell said in a March 10 news release. "We are presented with a historic opportunity to create a strong University-centric academic health system. For the public interest to prevail, we need the public to care — and to act."

The next board meeting is scheduled for May 11-12.

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