LSU seeks health system partnership focused on athletics, sports medicine

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LSU has issued a request for information from large health care organizations interested in pursuing a long-term partnership with the university that would be centered on LSU sports medicine and LSU athletics sponsorship opportunities, but also include other areas of health and wellness across the system.

The nine-page RFI was issued in late October by several arms of the university including LSU, the LSU Foundation, the LSU athletics department and the Tiger Athletic Foundation.

The document says LSU is seeking a health care partnership or partnerships that “leverage the university’s broad assets, established brand and statewide investments in unique and transformative ways.”

What does that mean?

It could mean any number of things, and the RFI is open-ended, seeking “innovative” proposals from potential partners that would help “bring value to the LSU community and its affiliated entities … advance LSU’s service to and investment in students, faculty, and facilities; the LSU Sports Medicine Program; the university’s local community and the state of Louisiana.”

But the RFI also mentions several specific “assets” of the university it expects respondents to address, with details of how they would add and extract value. Those include:

  • LSU sports medicine program. LSU is looking for a partner to invest in new and renovated training facilities and equipment; provide 24/7 access to health care for student athletes; offer discounted rates for clinical and hospital treatments; and competitive pricing and billing support for the treatment of student athletes. In return, it is offering research opportunities in the sports medicine field, as well as naming rights, cross promotional and co-branding campaigns.  
  • LSU athletics sponsorship. The athletics department is seeking sponsors for its programs, in return for naming rights, branding on signage and facilities, and media promotions. The RFI suggests families across the state will choose LSU’s new partner for its own health care needs because of LSU’s brand cache. “LSU and its partner(s) can tell the story about why they chose to partner, which will most certainly impact the decision-making of countless families across the state,” the RFI says.
  • LSU Interdisciplinary Science Building. LSU is in the first phase of fundraising for its new four-story, 148,000-square-foot science building, which will cost an estimated $70 million. In return for helping to “catalyze the construction of the new building,” LSU’s health care partner will have opportunities for naming rights, industry collaborations and brand building, the RFI says.
  • NCI cancer center designation. LSU is interested in any approaches or partnership that will enable the university to achieve one of three National Cancer Institute designations either more rapidly or aggressively.
  • LSU Student Health Center. LSU is looking for a partner to help improve on-campus access to health care for all students, which could create co-branding of the SHC for the new partner.

Among the two strongest and likely competitors for the deal are the state’s two major health systems, Ochsner and Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady Health System, both of which already have relationships with LSU.

Ochsner provides graduate medical education for the LSU Health Sciences Center in Shreveport.  

FMOL, through Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center, trains residents from the LSU Health Sciences Center in New Orleans.

Both institutions say they will respond to the procurement.

“Our roots of collaboration and partnership with LSU run deep and we are excited about this opportunity for both of our institutions to do even more together for the communities we serve,” says OLOL President and CEO Scott Wester.

Responses to the RFI are due Dec. 10.