Courier-Journal, August 11, 2011

University Hospital has a "public mission" to provide a full range of healthcare and that mission must continue even if it merges with a Catholic health system that forbids certain reproductive services, Gov. Steve Beshear said Wednesday. Beshear's comments came after a closed-door meeting at the Capitol with Louisville and state officials and representatives of three hospital systems planning the controversial merger: University, Jewish Hospital & St. Mary's HealthCare, and Lexington-based St. Joseph Health System, owned by Denver-based Catholic Health Initiatives. Though officials shared few specifics, CHI representatives said more details will be released in the next few days about how the new entity will ensure that its patients can get reproductive care, such as sterilizations, that's not allowed under Catholic health directives. "We had good meeting," Beshear said. "We public officials have concerns about the public mission of U of L Hospital. ? Overall, what we want to make sure of is the public mission of U of L Hospital remains the same."
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