As the MUHC copes with budget problems and layoffs, a group of doctors says the superhospital will not live up to its promise of joining healthcare with education.

In an open letter published in The Gazette, six doctors and professors say it is time for McGill University Health Centre "to renew our approach to governance," saying that the current administration is isolated from the real needs of the hospitals it is in charge of.

They specifically point to the merger of five teaching hospitals in 1997, and the decision to move administrative duties to an office on Guy St. blocks away from any hospital, as the point when problems began.

Prior to the creation of the MUHC the Montreal General Hospital, Children's Chest Institute, Neurological, and Royal Victoria hospital were separate entities.

The development of the superhospital in the Glen Yards was supposed to bring together research, teaching, and patient care, but over the years several aspects of health care have been removed from the plan.

They also point out that even though the MUHC is a teaching institution, lecture space is not included as part of the superhospital.

In their letter, Doctors Barry Posner, John Bergeron, David Moris, Andrey Cybulsky, Mark Sherman and Walter Gregory say those programs cannot just be "transferred into the community with planning."

They also say that while Arthur Porter may be partially responsible for the current financial mess, and he is "alleged to have bamboozled a number of well-meaning supporters," the entire management structure is also to blame, since they are "completely unsuited to the supervision of gigantic projects."