I am pleased to report the lawsuit against UM Medicine challenging the strategic alliance agreement with Valley Medical Center was dismissed by King County Superior Court at the end of December. In dismissing the lawsuit, the Court agreed with UW Medicine that the agreement is authorized by existing law and was validity signed by the Commissioners of Public Hospital District No. 1 of King County.
The public hospital district statute allows public entities, such as the District and UW Medicine, to join together to offer services to the community. When they do, the community served by the public hospital district is entitled to representation. Ten of the thirteen seats of the joint Board of Trustees are reserved for residents of the communities served by Valley Medical Center, including seats for all five elected District Commissioners. The Court concluded to the Board of Trustees overseeing the alliance complies with state law.
The Superior Court Decision upholding the alliance validates the long public process UW Medicine and the District engaged in before deciding to enter a strategic alliance. Through many public meetings, the community weighted in and overwhelmingly supported this alliance. The primary goal when we began the alliance in July, 2011 was to focus on our mission of improving the health of the public. Over the last 18 months, our health care professionals have been working very well together to improve quality and safety of care, control and reduced costs, and improve access to care for citizens of south King County. It has been a pleasure for me and my colleagues at UW Medicine to pursue this important work with the talented group of healthcare professionals at Valley Medical Center.
As the CEO of UW Medicine, I am pleased the Lawsuit has been favorably resolved, and I would like to focus now on maximizing the benefits of the alliance for the community. Our full efforts should be devoted to achieving the “Triple Aim” goals: better care for individuals, better health for populations, and reductions of per capita costs. I hope each of you will join UW Medicine and me as we continue the important work of transforming the delivery of health care to improve the health of residents of South King County and the region.
Paul G Ramsey, M.D. — CEO, UW Medicine; Executive Vice President for Medical Affairs; Dean of the School of Medicine, University of Washington
*Editor's Note: Valley Medical included the following note in a Jan. 7, 2013 email:
King County Superior Court dismissed a lawsuit Dec. 28 challenging the strategic alliance between Valley Medical Center and UW Medicine. Judge Michael C. Hayden ruled that the alliance between the two public entities is permitted under state law.
"When we solicited public comments two years ago, hospital district residents overwhelmingly supported an alliance between Valley Medical Center and UW Medicine," said Rich Roodman, Valley Medical Center's CEO. "The Superior Court's decision upholding the alliance allows us to further our efforts to provide additional clinical services and a depth of sub-specialization to our community through the expertise of one of the top medical organizations in the United States.”
More on Patch:
- Public Hospital District No. 1 Commissioners Sue UW Medicine Over Strategic Alliance With Valley Medical Center, Nov. 16, 2012
- Valley Medical Marks One-Year Anniversary Of Strategic Alliance With UW Medicine, July 20, 2012
- , June 10, 2011
- , Jan. 19, 2011