State of Stanford Medicine 2019

With the opening of a new Stanford Hospital right around the corner, the three entities of Stanford Medicine came together to discuss the university’s long-term vision, impact, and innovation it has had on Silicon Valley at the annual State of Stanford Medicine event held on Oct. 8.

During a panel discussion, Lloyd Minor, MD, dean of the School of Medicine, and leaders of Stanford Children’s Health and Stanford Health Care highlighted the excitement about the new Stanford Hospital, and discussed opportunities for internal and external collaboration that have been brought into focus by Stanford Medicine’s integrated strategic plan.

 “The purpose of the plan was to identify the areas of synergy, the areas where we will grow and build together collaboratively and interactively — but also to recognize that each of the three entities has its own distinct areas of focus,” Dr. Minor said. “I think we’re all really excited about how well the plan has come together … Now, this year is about execution.”

That includes taking an active role over the next decade in Stanford University’s long-range plan, which includes several health-related initiatives.

After more than a decade of planning, design and construction, the new Stanford Hospital is planning to open its doors soon and gave community members the opportunity to get a firsthand look at the new facility last month. More than 17,000 people showed up to get a first look at the new hospital; planners had expected only 5,000. 

“All of us will be able to participate in building this amazing institution and extending its impact locally, regionally and indeed, globally,” Dr. Minor said. 

The hospital’s advanced technology includes an interactive screen where patients can view test results, order meals and digitally control window blinds as well as the room’s climate. The expanded emergency department allows clinicians to get access to interpreters in real time and internet-enabled consultations, or e-consults, with colleagues. 

Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford also plans to celebrate the completion of several construction projects later this year, including the Bass Center for Childhood Cancer and Blood Diseases, the patient care administrative department, the outpatient heart center and the neurodiagnostics and pulmonary diagnostics clinics.

“I’ve been impressed with the ability of this children's hospital, in its short life of not quite 30 years, to really compete at a very high level, and to be compared with organizations that have been around for over a century,” Paul King, president and CEO of Stanford Children’s Health, said.

Following the leaders’ discussion, a group of scientists told the story of how James Spudich, Douglass M. and Nola Leishman Professor of Cardiovascular Disease, donated his tissue to Stanford Medicine, accelerating their research into diseased and healthy lung cells.

Spudich, PhD, had been diagnosed with early-stage lung cancer, telling the audience that he was thinking as a scientist rather than a patient when he approached Mark Krasnow, MD, PhD, and Christin Kuo, MD, and offered them the tissue that a surgeon would remove the following day.

“I think all of you would have done the same thing,” Spudich said.

As a participant in another study — a clinical trial led by Heather Wakelee, MD — Spudich is also helping researchers test the effect of an immunotherapy approach called checkpoint inhibitors on cure rates for people with early-stage lung adenocarcinoma.

“I'm absolutely certain it'll have a huge impact in the future,” he said, adding, “I consider myself cured, so don’t worry about me.”

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