A look back, then ahead, & back again

“As this decade begins, there is no shortage of challenges and opportunities for the Academic Health Center. All of the issues – cost containment, access, managed care, an aging population, facilities and equipment replacement, educational reform, and further development of the team approach to health care – require increased collaboration in the Health Center and within the University.”

This statement is not the current outlook in 2010, rather the look forward from 1990.

The above quote is from the report “Health Sciences at Minnesota: A Look Back and a Look Ahead” (Sept. 1990). It documents the administrative history of the AHC during its first twenty years and describes the changes in both the health needs of the state of Minnesota and teaching health care in higher education.

This year marks the 40th anniversary of the Academic Health Center. Documents such as this help identify the AHC’s passage over time and allow readers to place historical mile markers along the way of its development.

While reading this report, certainly many will consider 1990 as the recent past and 1970 less so. Yet, today the AHC is different than it was in 1990. In fact the AHC of 1990 is much closer in structure and governance to its earlier self of 1970.

As it looks far forward into the future, the report tries to imagine how individuals will get their health information in the year 2000. The role of personal computers, self-care, and prevention strategies are all forecasted. In many ways, the later part of twentieth century focused on what promises the twentieth first century would bring. This report is one such document. Unlike some of the preceding forecasts of the future of health sciences, this review of challenges and opportunities is on trajectory to intersect with its future to create a present that has now become our past.

Read the report in full below. Unfortunately, the listed attachments were not saved.