UT and Promedica At Odds over Doctor Training

TOLEDO -- The doctors who treat you and your children in the near future may disappear, because of the ongoing fight over how they are trained.  Third-year medical students at the University of Toledo can do pediatric and ob-gyn training rotations at The Toledo Hospital now.  But if the two institutions can't agree on a long-term contract, UT may break ties with Promedica.

With the latest contract for medical student training running out at midnight, UT trustees decided Tuesday night to ask Promedica for an extension, until the current rotations at The Toledo Hospital run out on September 21st.  Promedica agreed to that, but UT trustees also vowed to pull their students out of Promedica rotations and develop their own alternatives, if a long-term agreement isn't reached by that same date.

"It's a complicated issue and it's sometimes tough to get there," said Rick Stansley, Jr., the chairman of the UT board of trustees.  "With time I think this can be resolved.  We're just not there yet."

Promedica sent a statement to News 11 on Tuesday, singling out UT's president Lloyd Jacobs as part of the problem.  The statement read, in part:

"Promedica Health System has offered the University of Toledo multiple options to provide for the continuation of medical student education in our hospitals...  Unfortunately, Dr. Jacobs never responded to us.  In fact, a meeting that was scheduled to take place tonight with executives and board members from both organizations was canceled by UT officials."

While both sides continue to fight it out, UT is concerned about a possible doctor shortage.  Without an alliance with Promedica, UT's medical students may have to leave town.  "We have an aging physician workforce," said UT President Lloyd Jacobs.  "The number of people that are staying in Toledo when they finish medical school is something less than 10%, and so I think a physician shortage is almost an inevitability."

"If we're not able to go to Toledo Hospital, that's one less place we have exposure to in northwest Ohio and maybe one less place that we think of staying at," said Kristin Kunklier, a medical student and UT trustee.

The two sides will continue negotiating.

Count on News 11 to follow this story as it develops.

Posted by AEB