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September 29, 2010

The U.S. Department of Commerce has awarded a three-year $500,000 Market Development Cooperative Program (MDCP) award to the University HealthSystem Consortium (UHC) and the Rush University Department of Health Systems Management to facilitate increases in medical care exports to U.S. academic medical centers. The goal of the project is to stimulate growth in the number of patients choosing U.S. academic medical centers for care through better data, networking, implementing best strategic business development practices, and supporting other commerical activities, including research and consulting services.

UHC will collaborate with Rush University investigators and the U.S. Department of Commerce International Trade Administration on the project. Drs. Steven Meurer and Samuel Hohmann at UHC will lead the project to establish a forum for international patient programs; create a standardized set of data elements to be reported on international patients; host a series of meetings focused on strategies to increase the global competitiveness of U.S. academic medical centers and develop strategic relationships with Ministries of Health and private payers abroad. Drs. Andrew Garman and Tricia Johnson at Rush University will lead the development of a methodology to value medical care exports and evaluate the impact of these strategies on exports over the next 3 years. Drs. Meurer and Hohmann are also faculty members in the Department of Health Systems Management at Rush University, demonstrating a close collaboration between practice and academics.

This initiative is in response to President Obama's National Export Initiative to double exports by 2015 and the increasing competition from hospitals abroad for patients with quarternary care needs. This project will facilitate branding of U.S. academic medical centers in the international market. For more information, contact Tricia Johnson.

Photo caption: MDCP award team receives award plaque from Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Manufacturing and Services, Nicole Y. Lamb-Hale at Rush (pictured left to right):  Samuel Hohmann, PhD, MS, Peter Butler, MHSA, Steve Meurer, PhD, MBA, MHS, Irene Thompson, Nicole Lamb-Hale, and Tricia Johnson, PhD.

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