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Metro Newsroom

Board of Health to Hold Forum on Hospital Merger This Evening

Wednesday October 19, 2011

The Louisville Metro Board of Health will hold a community forum on the pending merger between University of Louisville Hospital, Jewish & St. Mary’s Health System and Catholic Health Initiatives. The forum will be held this evening Wednesday, October 19, from 5:45 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at Memorial Auditorium located at 970 South Fourth St.

Representatives of each of the merger organizations will participate. They include James Ramsey, Ph.D, President, University of Louisville; Paul Edgett, III, Senior V.P., Catholic Health Initiatives; James Taylor, President/CEO, University of Louisville Hospital/James Graham Brown Cancer Center; Dan Varga, M.D., Chief Medical Officer, Saint Joseph Health System; David Laird, President/CEO, Jewish Hospital & St. Mary's HealthCare; Sharmila Makhija, M.D., Chair of OBGYN, University of Louisville; David Dunn, M.D., Executive VP for Health Affairs, University of Louisville; LouAnn Atlas, Past Board Chair, Jewish Hospital & St. Mary's HealthCare, Board Member, new merged board; Edward Halperin, M.D., Dean, University of Louisville School of Medicine; Jennifer Elliott, Attorney, Stites & Harbison; Bob Hewett, Chairman, new merged board; Charlie Johnson, Board Member, new merged board.

Jean West of WAVE-TV will moderate the forum. Board of Health Chair William Altman, J.D. and Board of Health Vice-Chair Gabriela Alcalde, MPH, will read questions from the audience and ask follow-up questions.

“The Board of Health is convening this forum, which is open to the Louisville community at large, to facilitate a fact-based discussion about the risks and benefits of the pending merger,” said Board of Health Chairman, William Altman “Most importantly, the forum will provide an opportunity for community members to pose questions about the merger. We urge everyone to attend.”

People are encouraged to submit questions in advance by email at by noon tomorrow, October 19. People will also have the opportunity to submit questions in writing at the community forum.

The Louisville Metro Board of Health acts as an independent voice to promote and protect equitable physical, mental, and environmental health in the Louisville community through advocacy, education, regulation, and collaboration with public and private entities. Learn more about the Board of Health at