As we pursue ongoing restructuring activities for Temple University Health System, we are pleased to provide an update on several key initiatives.
Fox Chase and Health Partners Sale Negotiations
Temple University and Thomas Jefferson University have entered into an exclusive 90-day agreement to negotiate the potential sale of Fox Chase Cancer Center, the Bone Marrow Transplant Unit and Temple’s interest in Health Partners Plan. For Temple, this represents the next step in strengthening the health system’s ability to serve its core mission of providing outstanding clinical care to its North Philadelphia community and beyond, while maintaining its unique research and educational mission, and finding a partner that can enhance Fox Chase’s future growth.
With regard to the evaluation of a potential partner for Fox Chase, we are pursuing three main objectives:
- a durable academic affiliation agreement with Fox Chase Cancer Center to ensure that Temple will continue to provide cancer care services at its existing locations, as well as preserve the ability for medical students and residents to benefit from a fortified cancer training and research enterprise;
- achieve sufficient proceeds to strengthen the health system’s finances; and
- obtain a partner who can continue the status of Fox Chase Cancer Center as a world-class cancer research and treatment enterprise.
Through this process, we also have looked carefully at options for Jeanes Hospital. We have no plans to move forward with a transaction involving Jeanes. Rather, we have developed a restructuring approach which will include merging Jeanes operationally and programmatically under Temple University Hospital licensure.
Migration of TUP into TUHS
Last summer, we announced our plan to transition Temple University Physicians (TUP) into a new nonprofit company within Temple University Health System (TUHS) by July 2019. This move will provide the university’s clinical enterprise with greater flexibility to adapt and thrive in the rapidly changing healthcare market.
The TUP transition will:
- ensure the durability of the Lewis Katz School of Medicine’s research and education mission;
- improve transparency, coordination and alignment with the health system;
- maintain faculty status and privileges;
- support an additional measure of self-governance for the faculty; and
- improve economics and financial results.
The migration of the faculty practice from Lewis Katz School of Medicine to the health system is consistent with moves by many other large research oriented academic medical centers across the country.
A new entity has been created—Temple Faculty Practice Plan, Inc.—that will be doing business by its public name of Temple Faculty Physicians (TFP). A governance structure and board also have been established, which will give all TFP physicians the ability to participate in the new company through service on its board and committees.
Workgroups for human resources, payroll, legal, finance, accounts payable, purchasing, information technology and operations—each with representation from the university, TUP and TUHS—are meeting regularly to implement detailed work plans and timelines to keep the transition on track.
Operating Performance and Culture of Accountability
We continue to work diligently to improve internal operating performance at Temple University Hospital. We have challenged the leadership team to work more effectively with clear priorities and measurable, accountable objectives.
Our strategy to fortify our core mission is four-fold: 1) enhance government and commercial reimbursement that is critical for TUH, Philadelphia’s safety net hospital; 2) accelerate our programs in community and population health; 3) move appropriate care beyond our hospital walls into ambulatory settings; and 4) identify more creative and proactive partnerships with providers in the community.
The university is committed to preserving Temple Health’s mission and stature for the long term as a respected academic medical center and home to the highest quality care for the North Philadelphia community and beyond, through a thoughtful and deliberative restructuring process. Today, more than ever, change is part of the health care business. If we are to continue our mission, we must position the health system to compete effectively in this environment.
We will continue to keep you informed about future developments as the restructuring process moves forward.
Richard M. Englert
Larry R. Kaiser, MD, FACS
The Lewis Katz Dean, Lewis Katz School of Medicine