By Kelly Heyboer/ The Star-Ledger

NEWARK — Worried that health care in Newark will suffer under the proposed higher education restructuring, community groups and labor unions will hold a rally Wednesday night in support of the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey.

The event at New Hope Baptist Church will include speakers from the university, religious groups and unions concerned the Newark-based university is about to be swallowed by Rutgers University.

“There are a lot of important issues that haven’t been addressed sufficiently by the legislation proposed,” said Cliff Freid, New Jersey area director of the Committee of Interns and Residents/Service Employees International Union, which represents 1,200 UMDNJ interns and residents.

Many Newark leaders have expressed concern the proposed reshuffling of universities will diminish health care in the city, which relies on UMDNJ’s University Hospital to provide charity care for low-income residents.

The two-hour rally will begin at 7 p.m. Wednesday at New Hope Baptist Church, 106 Sussex Ave.
Under proposed legislation being debated in Trenton, UMDNJ’s eight schools and teaching hospital would be broken up. Most of the schools would be taken over by Rutgers. UMDNJ’s School of Osteopathic Medicine in South Jersey would be taken over by Rowan University, which would also form a partnership with nearby Rutgers-Camden. University Hospital in Newark would remain state-owned, but would be separated from the remaining pieces of UMDNJ.


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