No Mega Children’s Hospital in Twin Cities

The Star Tribune (registration required) reports today that the merger of Twin Cities children’s hospitals announced with much fanfare in May has been scuttled.

Some in the health care industry thought that finally, after 10 years of off-and-on merger talks, the metro area would have one world-class pediatric hospital instead of two competing institutions each with its own medical specialists and high-tech equipment.

But after four months of intensive negotiations, the latest effort to merge Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota with the University of Minnesota Children’s Hospital came to an unsuccessful end Friday.

“We just couldn’t make it work,” said Dr. Frank Cerra, senior vice president for health sciences at the University of Minnesota. “We worked to take all of the pieces and pull them together in a way that makes financial sense, but found it was just not possible.”

The merger talks seem to be off permanently this time, as one executive was quoted as saying, “I don’t anticipate that this is going to reemerge.”

ESPN Mobile Venture Shutting Down

The Wall Street Journal reported today that

Mobile ESPN, a start-up cellphone company backed by Walt Disney Co., will announce as soon as today that it is closing down operations, hoping to reinvent itself as a content partner of bigger wireless carriers, people familiar with the matter say.

The company, which launched earlier this year at the Super Bowl, has developed cellphones that feature a variety of sports-centric content and features.

But it has struggled to build a customer base in a fiercely competitive cellular industry with much bigger players.

Mobile ESPN operates through an agreement with Sprint Nextel Corp., paying for wholesale access to the carrier’s network and then reselling service to its own subscribers.

If any company would have the brand and the content to develop its own branded cell phone system, it would seem to be ESPN. The problem here seems to be that people may be interested in getting the video content and sports scores on their wireless devices, but they make the decision on their cell phone company based on other factors. By trying to own both the content and the distribution channel, ESPN apparently dreamed a little too big. It seems more likely that licensing content to a variety of carriers would find a bigger audience.

Dr. Ronald Petersen on TODAY




DrPetersenToday

Originally uploaded by LeeAase.

Dr. Ronald Petersen, a Mayo Clinic neurologist, was on NBC’s TODAY show this morning discussing prospects for a cure of Alzheimer’s Disease. This is part of a TODAY series on how far medical science is from cures for various diseases. Research from several other institutions was featured in the set-up piece, and Dr. Petersen, who was President Ronald Reagan’s physician, provided the overall perspective as the in-studio guest with Matt Lauer.

Dr. Petersen leads the Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center at Mayo Clinic and has extensive on-camera experience, both live in-studio and satellite interviews with broadcast networks as well as taped interviews for produced segments.

David Allen interview in Fast Company

Thanks to What’s the Next Action for calling attention to an oldie but a goodie, an interview with David Allen in Fast Company.

Here’s the answer to one of the questions, and why I think the GTD perspective on organizing “stuff” is so helpful…because everyone seems to be facing so much of it.

If there’s one thing that all of our readers probably agree on, it’s that they have too much to do and too little time in which to do it. Why do so many of us feel that way?

There is always more to do than there is time to do it, especially in an environment of so much possibility. We all want to be acknowledged; we all want our work to be meaningful. And in an attempt to achieve that goal, we all keep letting stuff enter our lives.

The problem, of course, is that we also want to finish what we start. Much of the stress that people feel doesn’t come from having too much to do. It comes from not finishing what they’ve started. That’s why a lot of my work has to do with how people deal with their input — email, phone messages, reports, conversations. Everything that isn’t where it should be is an open loop, an incomplete, a distraction that slows you down. Your brain says, “Hey, that doesn’t belong there,” and you have to deal with that impulse.

If you allow too much dross to accumulate in your “10 acres” — in other words, if you allow too many things that represent undecided, untracked, unmanaged agreements with yourself and with others to gather in your personal space — that will start to weigh on you. It will dull your effectiveness. You’ve got to dig into the mess and put those things to rest. Productivity is about completion.

Isn’t it interesting that people feel best about themselves right before they go on vacation? They’ve cleared up all of their to-do piles, closed up transactions, renewed old promises with themselves. My most basic suggestion is that people should do that more than just once a year. In fact, I tell people to take inventory weekly — to sort through all of the stuff that they haven’t yet acted on. If you can get a clear picture of everything that you have to do, you’ll be able to say, “Oh, this is what I have to do right now” — and then take the next step in getting it done.