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Oklahoma State Senate
Communications Division
State Capitol
Oklahoma City, OK 73105

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For Immediate Release: May 5, 2006

Senator Mike Mazzei
Senator Mike Mazzei

Sen. Mazzei Says Agreement Reached on Plan to
Guarantee Future of OSU Med School in Tulsa

The Oklahoma State University College of Osteopathic Medicine (OSU-COM) and the Tulsa Regional Medical Center (TRMC) have signed off on an agreement to ensure the future of the teaching hospital. Sen. Mike Mazzei announced the agreement mirrors the recommendations made in a recently released report by Merrill Lynch. The report was requested by a legislative task force co-chaired by Sen. Tom Adelson and Rep. Chris Benge. Mazzei has served as lead negotiator for the panel.

“We are extremely pleased that OSU-COM and TRMC have agreed to this creative public/private partnership,” said Mazzei, R-Tulsa. “Graduates from OSU-COM eventually practice medicine in almost every county of the state. Protecting the future of this program is vital to the future of Oklahoma.”

Under the Academic Affiliation Agreement (AAA) which will be entered into by OSU-COM and TRMC, there will be a 50 year contractual arrangement that provides long-term stability and operational control of the residency program. Necessary appropriated funds, of approximately $40 million over five years, would be earmarked for direct support of the OSU-COM residency program.

“Provided the legislature comes up with an overall budget agreement, I believe this solution if funded will ensure the future of the medical school,” said Adelson, D-Tulsa. “I’m very pleased that OSU and Ardent have reached an agreement.”

The next step will be for the Legislature to include the necessary language and appropriation as part of an overall budget agreement to set the contractual terms into motion. The language will be placed in SB 1771. The three lawmakers expressed optimism that the Legislature would work together to approve the measure before the end of the 2006 session.

Benge noted that there is still a lot of work ahead to finalize a FY 2007 budget.

“This agreement, if funded, represents a fiscally responsible plan that will ensure stability for the medical school and help continue to advance our shared goal of ensuring access to health care throughout Oklahoma,” said Benge, R-Tulsa.

For more information, contact:

Senator Mazzei's Office: (405) 521-5675

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