OU Health Completes Integration with Organizational Redesign Poised for Future Growth

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OU Health Completes Integration with Organizational Redesign Poised for Future Growth

OU Health has announced an organizational redesign to complete the integration from its historic merger on July 1, 2021.

OU Health was created as the flagship comprehensive, integrated academic health system to improve the care and outcomes for all Oklahomans. As the state’s academic referral health system, OU Health plays the unique role of providing critical specialty services with access to advanced technology and expertise.

Growth and Adaptation

“OU Health needs to support and enhance the capabilities of the state’s vital rural and regional hospitals as the flagship academic referral center. All care that can remain in a community should remain local, but if the patient needs a higher level of care, OU Health is here to serve,” said OU Health President and CEO Richard Lofgren, M.D., MPH.

The organizational redesign and operational restructure will enable OU Health to improve efficiencies and grow its impact in the state and region as well as create a highly integrated, modern clinical platform, one that serves even more Oklahomans.

“In order to grow and adapt to industry changes, we need to perform in terms of the quality of our services, patient experience, and the efficiency and effectiveness of our processes. Oklahoma needs the unique specialty and sub-specialty services we provide. We are positioned with dedicated physicians and staff to fully realize our special mission of clinical care, education and research. We are committed to our role of continuing to improve the care and outcomes for the region and beyond,” said Lofgren.

As part of the redesign, OU Health will move from a holding company to an operating company structure with duplicative services and positions being eliminated. An estimated 200 positions will be reconfigured to the new structure which integrates the organization into clinical business units led by chief administrative officers reporting to OU Health Chief Operating Officer, Jonathan W. Curtright, MBA, MHA. Approximately 100 positions will be eliminated.

The Future is Bright

The historic 2021 merger combined the University of Oklahoma College of Medicine faculty practice and OU Medicine, Inc. (sole member, University Hospitals Trust) to create OU Health — Oklahoma’s first fully integrated academic health system. The merger aligned the OU Health clinical enterprise with national best practices across the healthcare industry and enabled the hospitals and clinics to become one unified and cohesive organization. The relationship between OU Health and the OU Health Sciences Center allows research breakthroughs and education of the state’s future healthcare workforce to be combined with the modern clinical platform of OU Health.

The OU Health Launch Plan focuses on performance, growth and service to the state of Oklahoma. The plan includes performance improvement initiatives, growth of specialty and sub-specialty services and ongoing community responsibility for improvement in health outcomes for Oklahomans. Financial stewardship is a part of the performance aspect of the plan and includes expense management initiatives to address the immediate short-term financial headwinds present in the industry and for OU Health, including temporary pauses in OU Health employee 401(k) match and a limited reduction in OU Health employee paid-time-off accrual.

“OU Health is committed to becoming a fully integrated flagship academic health system for Oklahoma, providing the most specialized care available in our state. We care for people with complex and serious health problems that benefit from our extensive services and expertise. We believe that no one should need to leave the state to receive the latest and most effective care. Our plan to grow and build a sustainable future will be transformative for our state as we work to improve health outcomes and impact care for generations to come," said Curtright.