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I-Team: Consensus Met on UMC

LAS VEGAS -- Recent bickering over the current and future operations of university Medical Center ended with a consensus late Thursday.

Clark County Commissioners voted unanimously to take the first step toward transforming UMC into an academic medical center.

In recent weeks, commissioners have clashed publicly over the proposal. But it seems at least some reservations dissolved in the back room. The commission voted unanimously to move forward with the proposal.

The vote formalizes a partnership between UMC and the Nevada System of Higher Education.

Going forward, the trustees plan to hire consultants to examine UMC's operations and to explore exactly how to evolve from a financially strapped county hospital into a world class medical center.

Former Chancellor Jim Rogers, tapped by the commission to examine the possibilities, told commissioners it will be at a minimum a 10 year process.

New Cancer Clinic Gets Green Light

LAS VEGAS -- The Clark County Commission has given final approval for UMC and the Nevada Cancer Institute to create a new outpatient oncology clinic that will open in the fall.

The new clinic was made possible by a $3 million grant from the Lincy Foundation. The clinic will be a satellite location for the Nevada Cancer Institute and give patients access to various services and specialized doctors. UMC was forced to cut its oncology services in 2008 due to budget cuts.

"The winners today are those afflicted by cancer, and their families, who will benefit immeasurably from these expanded services and cost-efficient operation," said Kathy Silver, CEO of UMC.

 

 

Federal Government Threatens to Stop Medicare Payments to UMC

LAS VEGAS -- The federal government is threatening to halt Medicare payments to University Medical Center in Las Vegas because of allegations hospital officials failed to care for an uninsured pregnant woman in the emergency room.

The sanction could cripple finances at the state's only public hospital. But UMC officials say they've taken steps to correct the deficiencies by a deadline date of Feb. 11.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)