Chuck Mooty earns a wintry smile from AG Swanson | Photo by Steve Timmer
by Steve Timmer
Apr 7, 2013, 9:00 PM

“What are you people up to?” asks General Swanson

Just what the #$%$% is goin’ on?

Having just recently gotten wind that Fairview Health and Sanford Health from Sioux Falls were considering a merger, and since – for better or worse – the University of Minnesota Hospital is part of the Fairview system (which is a charity under Minnesota law), Attorney General Swanson – who has the responsibility for oversight of all charities in Minnesota –  called a hearing to find out what the #$$%^% was going on. It was held on Sunday, April 7th. The room — Room 15 in the Capitol, the round room under the rotunda — was packed.

Based on all the reporters in the room, this hearing should be amply reported. But here are a few images from the occasion. [Update: It was well reported. Here’s the Strib’s story; there are more photos here, however.]

The longest living kidney transplant patient (1975) from the University of Minnesota’s pioneering transplant program was there, sitting next to a lung transplant recipient at the University on his right.

 the longest living kidney transplant patient from the U - 1975

So was former Attorney General Mike Hatch who had some dustups with health care organizations himself.

Mike Hatch at Sanford hearing

There were some legislators in attendance, too, including Phyllis Kahn and a reflective Terri Bonoff.

phyllis kahn at Fairview Sanford hearing

a reflective Terri Bonoff attended the Sanford Fairview hearing

Sioux Falls media were also there.

sioux falls tv was there

General Swanson took the field and the hearing began with a recitation of the AG’s responsibilities to oversee charities and the long and storied tradition of Fairview Health (starting out to help Norwegian immigrants who couldn’t afford health care) and the University of Minnesota Medical School and Hospital. If Minnesota blood runs in your veins, it was a moving presentation.

general swanson takes the field

The Attorney General had some sharp questions for Sanford Health execs. Iszat so? asks AG Swanson.

iszat so asks General Swanson of Sanford

The Sanford people were sometimes testy in reply.

Sanford execs at Fairview hearing

Chuck Mooty, the interim CEO of Fairview, also testified.

General Swanson listen skeptically to Chuck Mooty

The reaction of the AG and her lieutenants was, well, chilly.

All photos by the author

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