News: In the News
Maryland Proton Treatment Center shedding its for-profit status to reduce debt
Howard Kurman Featured in the Baltimore Business Journal
Morgan Eichensehr Reporter, Baltimore Business Journal
The Maryland Proton Treatment Center is converting from a for-profit to a not-for-profit business. The move will allow the center to reduce its debt and better prioritize cancer patient care, the center's CEO said this week.
Baltimore's 110,000-square-foot Proton Treatment Center, part of University of Maryland's BioPark, began treating patients early last year. About $300 million went into the building and startup of the center, including nearly $100 million in technology. As one of the only proton centers on the East Coast, the hope is that the center will be a regional — and ultimately international — draw for cancer patients seeking alternative treatment options.
Howard Kurman, of Baltimore's Offit Kurman law offices, said tax-exemption status is often a motivating factor for a business to make the not-for-profit switch. It comes with fewer financial expectations and less pressure to pay back shareholders or equity owners in a certain period, he explained. A company's express mission is also usually a factor, Kurman said.
A not-for-profit entity is often only beholden to a board and the community members it serves, as opposed to the people who technically own the business.
Under the University of Maryland Medical System umbrella, Lazenby said this transition will allow the business "to look and feel" like every other institution on the academic medical campus, where the focus is more on research and improving health care as opposed to turning a profit. The new structure will allow the center to be better aligned with its core mission of patient-focused care, he said.
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