WKU President Gary Randsell says the decision to privatize the campus health center was a budgetary one.
"We believe one of our local hospitals or health care providers will win that bid and operate that center in a way that will sustain the quality service for our students, faculty, and staff, and maybe even open it up to the public," comments Ransdell. "We'll lease the building or share in the revenues. One way or another, we might even create a revenue stream for the campus."
President Ransdell adds that having a private provider run WKU Health Services will save the university more than a $1 million per year. Those savings, he says, will be spread across the university budget, minimizing each department’s budget cut. The proposed state budget for the next two years cuts WKU’s funding by $1.8 million.
He tells WKU Public Radio the university has already privatized other services with success, including the bookstore and restaurants.
The university plans to issue a request for bids in April and have a private provider in place by July.
WKU Health Services will operate as normal for the rest of the semester.