Strategies for University Hospitals

HBI Strategies for University Hospitals brings together university hospitals and research institutes from across Europe and beyond to discuss senior management challenges, showcase success, and analyse the issues. Uniquely, we focus on strategic management issues, the realities they face, and future opportunities.


Strategies for university hospitals Strategies for university hospitals Strategies for university hospitals
Strategies for university hospitals

Past and Present

Limited meeting of minds

  • Doctors lean to their patients
  • Scientists lean to publishing papers

Silos everywhere

  • Different payors for research and hospitals
  • Department heads are unaccountable and autonomous
  • Decisions made at departmental level
  • Isolated institutions which are not deeply connected

No clear strategy

  • Initiatives are at departmental level
  • Little accountability
  • Limited long-term thinking


  • Not closely linked to primary care and the wider ecosystem
  • Episodic patient care
  • Few long-term partnerships with medtech and pharma

The Future

A meeting of minds

  • Doctors and researchers work together
  • Shared goals around things that make a real difference to treatment

Siloes removed

  • Unified payors
  • Shared KPIs between hospital and research institute
  • Departments work together closely
  • AI and tech work with scientists and doctors

Clear strategies

  • Institutional intent
  • Multi-decade projects and strategy


  • At the centre of health care ecosystems
  • Lifetime patient relationships
  • Strong win/win partnerships with medtech and pharma

Read our special report University Hospitals: A Quiet Revolution
in association with Abbott

University hospitals face unique challenges around culture, institutional intent and partnering. Strategies for University Hospitals addresses these issues and is written for the CEOs, CFOs, strategy and transformation directors facing these challenges.

Read our special report University Hospitals: A Quiet Revolution
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Strategies for university hospitals


People-friendly models will be the winners

Anyone can put up a building. The key is staffing it with the right people, particularly in health care. This means the next decade will see the rise of new people-centric models and the demise of businesses that rely on more traditional employee/employer relat...

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Interview: Andrew Chadwick-Jones, CEO, Welbeck Health Partners

Few £50m revenue healthcare companies can report growth of 30% a year - at least not in Western Europe. Yet this is exactly what UK-based Welbeck Health Partners (WHP) claims to be achieving. Since 2019, the outpatient day surgery group has built practices wi...

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HBI 2023 Panel: Building Population Health Management Solutions

University hospitals are helping to create a more holistic, 360° understanding of the patient experience. With increasing needs and static budgets, population health management could be the only way forward. A panel at HBI 2023 considered the options....

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HBI 2023: Challenges and solutions in population health partnering

Partnering is all about finding the win-wins, and it seems obvious that population health management and genetic testing should be a win-win scenario. But the “Challenges and solutions” panel at HBI 2023 explored how difficult it can be to create a collabo...

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Partnering with Big Medtech

University hospitals have long struggled with their relationship with Big Medtech and Big Pharma. Here we interview Neil Wright, commercial director at Guys and St Thomas NHS Foundation Trust who has thought long and hard about this. We also cover these comple...

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How do university hospitals best work with medtech?

The relationship between Big Medtech and university hospitals can be tense. Often, medtech is accused of opaque pricing, of selling Ferraris to physicians, of disguising a short-termist approach based on quarterly sales targets under the banner of partnership....

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Interview: Geraint Lewis, Director of Population Health, Microsoft 

Chief data officer for NHS England for nine years and inventor of virtual wards, Lewis moved to Microsoft in January 2022. He has also put in stints as a Cabinet Office adviser to the Blair government and at Walgreens, the US pharmacy giant, where he led the c...

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Focus, Agility and the importance of No

How do you best build innovation and work with tech start-ups inside a university hospital? UK hospital Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust (GSTT), took the unusual step of appointing as Director of Innovation & Strategic Industry Partnerships , Nadine Hac...

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US academic medical centres face squeeze

The 100 academic medical centres which make up the core of US healthcare delivery face a squeeze. University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and Mayo both notched up net losses due in part to hikes in labour costs and caps on tariffs. An AMC source said that the ...

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What we learnt at the EIT Health conference

Has Covid reset the pace of change in healthcare and the appetite for reform in Europe? The EIT Health conference in Stockholm was a good opportunity to answer those twin questions....

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Partnering to build a regional network

We explore how you best build partnerships with fiercely independent regional hospitals with Tad Morley, Executive Director of Outreach & Network Development at the University of Utah Health. That involves a lot of trust, telemedicine and the discipline of KPI...

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Karolinska unlocks collaboration between hospital and research

Trapped in silos, European university hospitals and their twinned research institutes are exploring better ways of working together. Karolinska Institute and the Karolinska University Hospital have created a new 50/50 joint venture, PMCK - Precision Medicine Ce...

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Blog: Twinning isn't good enough

Historically, university hospitals in Europe have been paired with research institutes in a separate twinned relationship. The harsh truth is this doesn't work well. If Europe is to emulate the success of Boston's biotech hub we need unified structures where sci...

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How do you build a successful health care science cluster in Europe?

How do you build a successful healthcare science cluster in Europe? If anyone can answer that question it is Professor Nikolaus Rajewsky, the jean-jacketed founder of the Berlin Institute for Medical Systems Biology (BIMSB) and of the Cell Hospital. ...

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How Maastricht UMC+ is moving into population health management

Population health management is the new mantra for many healthcare systems. Maastricht UMC+ in the Netherlands has been doing it for years, building a stronger primary health network called primary 1.5. We talk to UMC+ CEO Helen Mertens....

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Blog: Why we are here and what we are doing

Welcome to this, the first edition of Strategies for University Hospitals, and to our initial report on the state of the sector. These big and complex institutions and their twinned university research institutes face huge challenges which they share with simi...

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Innovating at university hospitals

How do you build a university hospital which is capable of innovating solutions which make a real difference to patient outcomes and that have commercial applications? We interview Dr Daniel Moreno-Martinez, who has spent the last three years building an innov...

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Interview: Prof Hans Romijn, CEO, Amsterdam UMC

Prof Hans Romijn was faced with the task of merging Amsterdam’s two university hospitals, the Academic Medical Center (AMC) and the VU University Medical Center (VUmc) which had fiercely competed for decades. Out of the eight university hospitals in the Neth...

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Interview: Jürgen Laartz, founder, and Alexandra Cosma, COO, EDU Malta

A five and a half year education (Batchelor + Masters) as a doctor for just €100,000? That is what is on offer from EDU Malta, a for-profit educational institute with statutes which commit it to working for the public good. It is working closely with Freseni...

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Finland's largest university hospital appoints CEO from the for-profit sector

Matti Bergendahl, the former CEO of Mehilainen and Ambea has been appointed as CEO of Helsinki University Hospital (HUS), despite having just 20 months of employment in the public sector in his entire career....

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