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March 24, 2010

Update on Proposal

I was delighted to see so many of you the other week when Governor Rell came to the Health Center to announce her vision to renew the John Dempsey Hospital and create the new UConn Health Network. It is a combined proposal that includes both upgrades to our clinical facilities as well as the establishment of innovative regional projects.

Since then, the proposal has continued to gain momentum.

Last week, the General Assembly’s Higher Education and Employment Advancement Committee voted a concept bill out of committee that will keep the conversation and dialogue going on the proposal during this legislative session. Two days later, the Health Center’s Board of Directors unanimously approved the plan, paving the way for the University’s Board of Trustees’ unanimous vote yesterday. And this week, President Obama signed healthcare reform legislation, which included language that U.S. Senator Christopher J. Dodd sponsored that could potentially help our project.

There are still many miles ahead of us, but there are reasons to be cautiously optimistic.

I realize many of you have questions about various aspects of the new proposal. I encourage you to speak with your managers or to contact me directly through my blog. Meanwhile, in the days and weeks ahead, we will make every effort to keep you informed as this exciting plan progresses.

Sincerely,

Cato T. Laurencin, M.D., Ph.D.
Vice President for Health Affairs
Dean, School of Medicine