Cancer Research Centers Cautiously Optimistic Despite Gov. Scott's Order to Stop Franchising Brands
Several cancer research centers are responding cautiously to Gov. Rick Scott's ultimatum to stop franchising their brands - or lose millions in state funding.
In letters to the University of Miami’s Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa and the Shands Cancer Hospital in Gainesville, Scott told the centers they “may not franchise their name or brand to other private entities.”
He also said they “may not receive royalties or other remuneration from other entities in exchange for use of their name or brand,” according to the Miami Herald.
Shands officials said they have had a "positive discussion" with Scott's staff and "are continuing to work toward our common goal of making Florida a destination for the latest in cancer research and care,"according to the Tampa Bay Times.
Moffitt officials said they look forward to meeting with the governor, adding: "As the only Florida-based National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center we have a unique role to reach out to doctors, hospitals and health organizations around the state to fulfill our legislative intent to serve as a statewide research institute and to perform a statewide function."
Scott cited his desire for a “robust and competitive environment” in the area of cancer treatments and “a fair and balanced playing field for all institutions,” as a reason for the demand.
Scott is the former president and CEO of the Columbia/HCA hospital chain. In the past he’s raised concerns about the advantages that government-owned hospitals have over for-profit and nonprofit hospitals.
“These conditions are not meant to be punitive or stifle innovation,” Scott wrote, “but rather to foster a healthy and viable climate for growth and development in the area of biomedical research and cancer treatment in Florida.”
The letters note that Moffitt received $5 million from the Legislature this year. Sylvester and Shands each received $7.5 million, according to the Tampa Bay Times.
The H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa is a WUSF underwriter.