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Together, OHSU makes strides in managing tight budget

Collective university efforts make progress despite unprecedented challenges
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Together, as one university, OHSU has made progress in improving financial performance and ensuring the institution’s long-term future, despite a health care environment that continues to struggle with capacity and workforce challenges, the university’s board of directors heard in its regular meeting today.

The improved financial outlook came from the hard work of OHSU members across the university, and a series of institution-wide measures to trim costs while continuing to serve as many Oregonians as possible, including facilitating patient access to complex surgical procedures, OHSU Chief Financial Officer Lawrence Furnstahl wrote to the board.

The university saw an operating budget loss of $4.7 million in the first quarter — $11 million better than budgeted, and $19 million better than the same quarter a year ago.

Danny Jacobs, M.D., M.P.H., FACS, stands atop stairs.
Danny Jacobs, M.D., M.P.H., FACS (OHSU)

“We have left no stone unturned,” said OHSU President Danny Jacobs, M.D., M.P.H., FACS. “The health care industry as a whole is in uncharted territory. Although all health systems are facing some financial challenges, OHSU is faring better than many.”

The university is targeting a break-even budget for the fiscal year that began July 1 with an expectation that costs for labor and materials will continue to exceed increases in payment rates for health care. Further, investment returns have been negative as the overall stock and bond markets fell this year.

The university will continue efforts to improve financial performance, the board heard.

Lawrence J. Furnstahl (OHSU)
Lawrence J. Furnstahl (OHSU)

“OHSU’s ongoing focus is to support our people, build community engagement and health equity, improve access and grow strategically, strengthen partnerships, and build for the future,” Furnstahl wrote to the board.

In other board updates:

  • Nancy Haigwood, Ph.D., outgoing director of the OHSU Oregon National Primate Research Center, provided an overview of activities at OHSU’s West Campus at the ONPRC. Haigwood, who is retiring as ONPRC director but continuing her own research program, also briefed the board on antibodies as therapies for HIV.
  • Bridget Barnes, Ph.D., M.B.A., CHIO, senior vice president and chief information officer, updated the board on the status of the OHSU 2025 strategic plan for growth.
  • The board heard an annual report from Tim Marshall, chief integrity officer, on efforts to ensure compliance with policies, laws, regulations and other appropriate standards.
  • Heath Kula, J.D., OHSU police chief, provided a campus safety update
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