- Several prominent public universities have moved to construct new medical schools or merge with stand-alone medical facilities over the past year, and the list includes Rutgers University, Texas A&M, and the University of Texas at Austin.
- According to higher education leaders, there are a variety of factors that driving these universities to create new medical schools or merge with existing facilities, but common concerns--like the national push for more physicians, potential to save money on shared services and pressure for prestige and new revenue sources--help explain the number of these efforts in recent years.
- These efforts come with risks, as health care's outlook is even more uncertain than that of higher education with the health care reform act still a major political issue and funding for research, Medicaid and Medicare all potentially on the chopping block in the next few budget cycles.
From the article:
In January, the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia voted to merge four pairs of state universities, an unprecedented move in the state, with the general idea of cutting state expenses. That reasoning made sense for three of the pairs, in which the institutions were of comparable size and mission, with significant overlap in programs. But the fourth merger, between Augusta State University and Georgia Health Sciences University, stood out. ...