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Hospital commission to meet Tuesday on future of strategic alliance challenge

Public Hospital District No. 1 commissioners have called a special meeting for Tuesday (July 15) to discuss the future of a lawsuit challenging the district's alliance with UW Medicine and the status of commissioner Dr. Aaron Heide.

The meeting is at 5:30 p.m. in the Board Room at Valley Medical Center, 400 S. 43rd St., Renton.

The commission last met in April.

The Washington State Court of Appeals issued its ruling on June 23 that the strategic alliance between UW Medicine and Valley Medical Center was legal.

In the ruling, the Court of Appeals found that the hospital district does have a right under state law to enter into a joint operating agreement.

The decision issued on June 23 marks another victory for the hospital and UW, following a decision last July by the state Supreme Court not to review a King County Superior Court decision from 2012 that dismissed the challenge to the validity of the alliance. That challenge was brought by the hospital district, which owns Valley Medical Center.

The commissioners have 30 days to appeal the appeals-court decision to the state Supreme Court, which will then decide if it wants to hear the case.

The commission also will consider the status of Heide, whose six-year term on the commission started on Jan. 1, 2010. Hospital district commissioners also serve as trustees overseeing the operations of Valley Medical Center. Heide resigned as a trustee in October 2012.

The hospital district commission is scheduled to meet once a month. The commission has cancelled five of the last 13 meetings; Heide was present for half of the eight meetings that were held.

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