Oklahoma State University Center for Health Sciences
Oklahoma State University Center for Health Sciences
OSU-CHS News > 2013

Sept. 11, 2013

OSU Center for Health Sciences Announces Leadership Changes

BarnettBarnett (left) and Shrum

In a move designed to strengthen Oklahoma State University Medical Center for long-term success, Oklahoma State University has appointed Howard Barnett, president of OSU-Tulsa and OSU Center for Health Sciences, as chief executive officer of the OSU Medical Authority (OSUMA), which oversees the downtown Tulsa hospital.

Barnett will remain president of OSU-Tulsa and resign his role as president of OSU Center for Health Sciences to assume the new post.  Kayse Shrum, D.O., currently Provost of OSU-CHS and Dean of OSU College of Osteopathic Medicine, will be named to the additional post of president of OSU-CHS, pending approval of the OSU/A&M Board of Regents. She will now report to OSU President Burns Hargis. Barnett will begin serving as CEO of OSUMA pending approval of the OSUMA's trustees.

"President Barnett and I believe that the most important issue for our OSU College of Osteopathic Medicine in the next few years is the stabilization of our teaching hospital, OSU Medical Center," Hargis said. "The hospital ownership is in the process of being converted from a City of Tulsa trust, which owns it today, to OSUMA, a trust authority of the State of Oklahoma. As CEO of OSUMA, Howard will lead the effort to find a partner on behalf of OSU."

Hargis continued, "This decision is made easy by having someone of Dr. Shrum's capabilities at the ready to take on the leadership of our Center for Health Sciences.  I have every confidence that she will excel in her new role and we will continue to guide the growing impact of our medical school on the health outcomes of Oklahomans."

Barnett commended Shrum for her leadership of CHS.

"Dr. Shrum, in her time as Provost and Dean, has shown exemplary leadership skills," Barnett said. "She is more than ready to take on this additional responsibility. I look forward to continuing to work with her and the medical school in this new capacity."

Dr. Shrum added, "I appreciate the opportunity which President Hargis is affording me and look forward to continuing to grow our presence in Oklahoma and meet our mission of providing doctors for rural and underserved Oklahoma."

The OSU Medical Center is seeking to be transferred to the state to secure a more stable funding base and more appropriately recognize its statewide impact. Barnett, who led negotiations to save the hospital from closing in 2008, will request transfer of the medical center to OSUMA from the Tulsa City Council.

"Our number one goal is to stabilize the OSU Medical Center and to find a suitable private partner to help ensure its future growth and success," Barnett said. "OSU Medical Center plays an unparalleled role in the state's health-care system. With Oklahoma's physician shortage growing and the medical needs of our citizens increasing, OSU's teaching hospital must be supported to provide medical training for our next generation of doctors and high quality medical care for many underserved populations in the city and across the state."

The Oklahoma State University/A&M Board of Regents consolidated leadership roles of the two campuses and named Barnett president of all the university's operations in Tulsa in March 2010. Barnett, a lifelong Tulsa attorney and businessman, was the chief negotiator for the OSU Medical Center Trust in its acquisition of the OSU Medical Center, giving him a strong appreciation and understanding of the vital work done by the OSU College of Osteopathic Medicine.

"The technicalities of the statute that created OSUMA don't allow me to be both president of OSU Center for Health Sciences and chief executive officer of OSUMA," said Barnett. "The importance and time-consuming nature of finding a potential partner health system for the hospital led me to agree with President Hargis that the best place for me to serve our medical school and OSU will be heading the medical authority."

Shrum, a professor of pediatrics, was named Provost and Dean at the medical school campus in 2011. During her leadership tenure, she has focused on expanding the physician pipeline by increasing the number of students from rural Oklahoma who are interested in attending medical school. She has worked with high schools and FFA chapters across the state, implemented an early admissions program with OSU's College of Arts and Sciences and Division of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources in Stillwater, and launched Operation Orange, a series of summer camps designed to increase interest of rural high school students in the medical field. As Provost, Shrum has also overseen an overhaul of curriculum requirements for students in the College of Osteopathic Medicine, including the addition of a rural medical track. In 2012, U.S. News and World Report named OSU-CHS the "Most Popular Medical School" in the nation.

"We have developed a strong base for the OSU Center for Health Sciences during the last two years and I look forward to taking us to the next level of excellence with our growing student body," Shrum said. "We will continue provide exceptional medical education to an expanded number of students to fill the pressing need for more physicians throughout the state."

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