The University of California Board of Regents met last week to discuss recent incidents of intolerance on campuses and the state’s control of prison system health care funding.

The Board of Regents, as the UC’s governing body, meets on a bimonthly basis to discuss pertinent UC matters and pending actions. This month’s three-day meeting spanned from Tues., March 23 to Thurs.he, March 25 at the UC San Francisco Mission Bay Community Center.

On Wednesday, UC President Mark G. Yudof outlined a series of proposed actions in response to recent reports of displays of racism and intolerance on various UC campuses. Yudof promised to work with students in developing anti-hate crime legislation for the UC. Additionally, Yudof asked for support from alumni and other donors to launch private scholarship funds in support of underrepresented UC minority students, and called for a more comprehensive, balanced admissions process that would allow for a larger applicant pool.

“The chancellors have done admirable work in addressing these issues with their campus communities and all have my full support,” Yudof said at Wednesday’s meeting. “We all know that what affects one UC campus affects us all. Similarly, where we see best practices that promote diversity and tolerance, chancellors will share information with their colleagues.”

Thursday’s sessions highlighted the UC’s potential role in improving prison health care in California. UC officials discussed a proposal to have UC Health facilities manage and coordinate California’s prison health care system.

According to a press release, the health care demands from California’s prison system currently cost $2.4 billion a year under federal receivership. Gov. Schwarzenegger and state lawmakers have set out to increase the quality of care, reduce costs and end the receivership. In doing so, UC leaders, state officials and health care experts have discussed transferring the state prison health-care system’s financial reins over to the UC.

The assessment, proposed by health care company NuPhysicia, calls for UC Health to manage health care services in California prisons. According to a NuPhysicia report referenced in a UC Office of the President press release, California spends $41.25 a day on health care for each of its 161,000 inmates, compared with $15.84 in New Jersey, $10.25 in Georgia and $9.67 in Texas.

If California was to adopt the reforms suggested by NuPhysicia, the report states, it could save the state $4.3 billion in the first five years and $12 to $16 billion over a 10-year period.

According to UC Senior Vice President for Health Sciences and Services Dr. John Stobo, the Regents are taking the proposal seriously, but no agreements have been made between the UC, the state and NuPhysicia as of yet.

The Board also appointed UC professor emeritus Lawrence H. Pitts, M.D. as provost and executive vice president for academic affairs at the meeting. Pitts, who had served as interim provost since February 2009, was chosen out of 15 candidates in a national search.

“Having spent most of my career at UC, I know very well what a remarkable institution the University of California is, and its impact on society, not only here in California but around the world,” Pitts said in a press release. “We have some big challenges ahead of us, but many more opportunities.”

According to a press release, Pitts will receive the same compensation and benefits he received as interim provost — $350,000 annually.