All Children’s Hospital and USF sign new affiliation agreements

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All Children’s Hospital and the University of South Florida have signed new affiliation agreements that extend and enhance their longstanding collaborative efforts in pediatric medical education and research. The resulting expansion of pediatric research programs will benefit both institutions, create new jobs, drive economic development, and spur entrepreneurial growth in biomedical sciences while advancing understanding of pediatric health issues.

The eight-year agreement is the first renewal of the affiliation after All Children’s became a member of Johns Hopkins Medicine last year, and signals commitment to a long-term relationship.

“This sets the stage for ACH and USF to establish a critical mass for pediatric research and academics,” says Jonathan Ellen, MD, president and vice dean, All Children’s Hospital. “It promises an academic culture that will foster the generation of new ideas and avenues of inquiry to ultimately benefit children throughout the Tampa Bay area and beyond.”

“This is a new day for our relationship,” said Stephen Klasko, MD, MBA, CEO of USF Health and dean of the Morsani College of Medicine. “It provides for a unique residency experience for our pediatric residents between All Children’s and Tampa General and the colleges of USF Health.”

“Now, our world-class endowed chairs at the Children’s Research Institute will work along with investigators from All Children’s Hospital and Johns Hopkins in a collegial and collaborative environment,” Dr. Klasko said.  

Collaboration between the two institutions dates back to 1973, with the creation of an endocrinology clinical and research program headed by Allen Root, MD. It grew in the 1980s to include pediatric immunology and molecular genetics. In 1996, USF pediatric residency programs in St. Petersburg and Tampa combined into a single program in which resident physicians received training on both sides of the bay.

USF residents will continue to benefit from participating in the care of children with acute and complex medical conditions and intense exposure to pediatric subspecialties through rotations at ACH.  The agreement reaffirms that USF medical students and residents in surgical specialties can continue to train at ACH for pediatric experience. In addition, All Children’s will continue to provide support for ongoing USF clinical programs in pediatric allergy/immunology and pediatric nephrology at ACH.

“The USF residency, established in the early 70’s has trained over half of the pediatricians in the Tampa Bay area,” said Dr. Patricia Emmanuel, chair of the USF Health Department of Pediatrics. “This affiliation will continue the excellence of the training program, and perpetuates the legacy of our Department. We have the benefits of all aspects of our University to help create future pediatric leaders.”

The agreements further define how ACH and USF will move forward collaboratively to grow a shared pediatric research mission based at the Children’s Research Institute (CRI). The CRI, a USF Health facility adjacent to ACH that was built with a combination of ACH donations and state matching funds, opened in 2000. Several CRI-based researchers who hold endowed chairs (established through gifts from the All Children’s Hospital Foundation) in the USF Health Department of Pediatrics will continue their investigations.

Funds from two endowed chairs that remain unfilled will be redirected to support a collaborative research enterprise and expanded research infrastructure that will benefit both institutions. Through the agreement, All Children’s will lease space within the CRI.

“The new agreement leverages the existing endowed chairs and the CRI building and facilities in order to expand research programs and infrastructure,” Dr. Ellen said. “This will enhance the impact of the original gifts from generous All Children’s Hospital supporters.”

“Greater collaboration among investigators and programs within the Children’s Research Institute will contribute further to scientific advancements achieved by USF investigators and create new research opportunities aimed at improving children’s health,” Dr. Klasko said.

The CRI endowed chairs are:

  • The Andrew & Ann Hines Chair in Molecular Genetics – Gary Litman, PhD
  • The Robert A. Good Endowed Chair in Immunology – John Sleasman, MD
  • The Mason Endowed Chair in Translational Cardiology – Kersti Linask, PhD
  • The Maurice A. and Thelma P. Rothman Chair of Developmental Pediatrics – Tanya Murphy, MD, MS
  • The All Children’s Hospital Guild Chair in Child Development – Eric Storch, PhD, MS
  • The Wal-Mart/Sam’s Club Chair in Translational Diabetes – Michael Shamblott, MD  

The two new collaborative research program endowments are:

  • ACH / USF Program Endowment in Health Services Sciences
  • The Andrews/Daicoff Program Endowment in Pediatric Cardiology at ACH

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.