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I-Team: Consensus Met on UMC | Health

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I-Team: Consensus Met on UMC

LAS VEGAS -- Recent bickering over the current and future operations of university Medical Center ended with a consensus late Thursday.

Clark County Commissioners voted unanimously to take the first step toward transforming UMC into an academic medical center.

In recent weeks, commissioners have clashed publicly over the proposal. But it seems at least some reservations dissolved in the back room. The commission voted unanimously to move forward with the proposal.

The vote formalizes a partnership between UMC and the Nevada System of Higher Education.

Going forward, the trustees plan to hire consultants to examine UMC's operations and to explore exactly how to evolve from a financially strapped county hospital into a world class medical center.

Former Chancellor Jim Rogers, tapped by the commission to examine the possibilities, told commissioners it will be at a minimum a 10 year process.

Rogers insists the commissioners must remove politics from the equation. Commissioner Steve Sisolak agreed.

"This can't be about politics and bull crap. And then when you said we have to do this together, I think that kind of summarizes everything," he said.

To that end, Commissioner Rory Reid told the board he believes it should get out of the hospital business. Reid wants to see an independent group of medical experts, not the commissioners, to oversee UMC.

He asked staff to put that discussion on their next agenda.