New study suggests UMMC could be run more efficiently
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Options the state can consider if they feel the need to.
Maura Moed (courtesy of C4MHP)

A new study funded by the Center for Mississippi Health Policy compares the current way the College Board oversees UMMC, with best practices from around the country.

The report says unlike the hospital boards that run other medical centers, the Mississippi College Board lacks medical center expertise.  

It also says that the current system is cumbersome because it requires frequent College Board votes regarding contracts and other operational details. 

Therese Hanna is with the Center for Mississippi Health Policy. She says the way the system works now with the medical center answering directly to the State College Board, it can be difficult to make prompt financial decisions.

"The governance structure the way Mississippi has it with the Institutions of Higher Learning, and their Health Affairs Committee, and the University of Mississippi, and all that related to the University Medical Center is not very typical. Most of the kinds of publicly funded academic health centers like the University Medical Center is, don't have that kind of direct control at the state level," says Hanna.

 The report also says the board's once-a-month meeting slows the medical center's ability to act quickly. 

According to the study, possible changes could include recasting the board's Health Affairs committee to include non-trustees who are health care experts. Also, a separate board could run UMMC with the College Board approving some decisions, or a separate hospital authority board with no College Board oversight could be created.

We contacted both UMMC and the College Board. Both say they have not reviewed the report, but plan to in the upcoming days.