University News

Med School, Lifespan expanding affiliation

Senior Staff Writer
Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Alpert Medical School has expanded its partnership with Lifespan, amending an existing affiliation agreement meant to bring the Med School and Lifespan hospitals into closer alignment. The two institutions formally announced the agreement at a press meeting Monday.

The institutions have agreed to name Rhode Island Hospital the principal teaching hospital of the Med School, coordinate joint strategic planning through formal monthly meetings and use resources in a more meaningful way, including direct support from the hospitals to the Med School, said Dean of Medicine and Biological Sciences Edward Wing.

Speaking at the announcement were Wing, President and CEO of Lifespan George Vecchione and President and CEO of Rhode Island Hospital and The Miriam Hospital Timothy Babineau.

Decisions have yet to be made about where investments from Lifespan and Brown will go, but there will be direct support toward recruiting department chairs for areas such as neurology and psychiatry. This type of support has already been put to use in recruiting Rees Cosgrove, chair of neurosurgery, and Louis Rice, chair of medicine.

“We are also planning a neuroscience institute that combines the strength of neuroscience at Brown and in the Department of Psychiatry with that of the Rhode Island Hospital,” Wing said.

This will be the first time that Rhode Island Hospital is formally recognized as the principal teaching hospital for the Med School, Wing said, and this change reflects the fact that it contains the majority of department chairs and residents in relation to the other hospitals, now referred to as “major teaching affiliates.”

“This agreement will allow us to provide the best medical care for Rhode Island, add to the economy and have a medical school that all of our citizens can be proud of,” Wing said.

The institutions will have a greater ability “to pool our resources in a more synergistic way,”  Babineau said, adding that citizens “will see a difference.”

This expanded affiliation with Lifespan and the Med School will be far-reaching and long-lasting, Vecchione said, adding that this will allow the institutions to “address the challenges and create opportunities in today’s healthcare environment.”

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