By Sam Combest —

The University of Louisville announced April 1, that they will be extending their search for 90 additional days to find a suitable partner.

The first Request for Proposal was sent out Feb. 19 with the end date being March 8.

President Neeli Bendapudi sent an email to campus, as an update that said, “The Request for Proposal (RFP) process we entered last month did not produce a suitable partnership. Several potential partners told us they simply needed more time to review the opportunity and present a strong proposal.”

U of L Media Spokesman John Karman clarified when he said, “The RFP process has not been extended. It concluded without finding a suitable partner.”

The agreement is between the university and CommonSpirit Health, formerly known as Catholic Health Initiatives.

The RFP was in regards to the university seeking a partner to undertake the management of all Louisville-based CHI-KentuckyOne Health organization’s assets, services and academic programs with the university. This will also include Jewish Hospital and the Frazier Rehab Institute.

The combined operation would be a $1.5 billion concern for the university and CommonSpirit.

“The extension from CommonSpirit will allow us to be more thoughtful and deliberate in our efforts,” said Bendapudi.

Karman also added that the university is using the additional 90 days to find a suitable partner to help acquire the KentuckyOne Health Assets.

The assets would add 1331 beds to U of L’s current 404. It would also add five more hospitals to create a regional operation stretching from Saints Mary and Elizabeth Hospital in southwest Louisville to Jewish Hospital Shelbyville

The new deadline is June 30.

File Photo / The Louisville Cardinal