Hospital Flap Threatens Rural Health Efforts

Saturday, September 15th 2007, 2:36 pm
By: News On 6

STILLWATER, Okla. (AP) -- A dispute over how to spend millions of state tax dollars has placed Oklahoma State University's residency program for doctors of osteopathy in danger.

OSU regents voted Friday to ask Attorney General Drew Edmondson to represent the state in contract disputes with Nashville-based Ardent Health Services. Ardent owns the OSU Medical Center in Tulsa -- home to the College of Osteopathic Medicine's residency program.

The hospital, formerly called Tulsa Regional Medical Center, was renamed as part of a 50-year agreement with Ardent to stabilize the residency program.

Lawmakers appropriated $20 million to the program in 2006, but none of the money's been spent because of a dispute over which party has control of the money and how it should be spent.