University Hospitals, Philips Healthcare align as charter tenant of global center for health innovation
By Nina Polien Light
When it opens this fall, the long-awaited Global Center for Health Innovation will showcase emerging medical technology, host medical conventions, and offer continuing education courses in a variety of healthcare disciplines. Formerly known as the Medical Mart, the Global Center is part of a $465-million, taxpayer-funded convention complex that local officials and businesspeople hope will boost Cleveland’s appeal as a major meeting destination and its stature as a medical innovator.
Among the inaugural tenants will be University Hospitals Case Medical Center and Philips Healthcare, a global leader in healthcare technology whose Computed Tomography and Advanced Molecular Imaging Business Units are based in Cleveland. The UH-Philips partnership marks the Global Center’s first collaboration between a healthcare provider and commercial enterprise.
“Our $40-million Global Advanced Imaging Innovation Center at University Hospitals Case Medical Center in Northeast Ohio is a worldwide hub for imaging technology and brings in radiologic experts to coordinate clinical research, education, development, and the commercialization of advanced imaging technologies,” Dominic Smith, Philips Healthcare’s vice president and general manager of computed tomography, says. “To partner on another project where we can showcase the innovation and the important work being done through our collaboration in Northeast Ohio is very exciting and logical.”
Pablo Ros, MD, professor and chairman of the department of radiology at UH Case Medical Center and Case Western Reserve University, says UH and Phillips will use their third-floor exhibit space to highlight the lifesaving innovations that have and continue to result from their long-standing association. Some exhibits may showcase Philips Healthcare technology, such as a 7 Tesla MR magnet, leading-edge CT scanner, and PET/MR unit, whose first U.S. installation in a clinical setting was at UH’s Seidman Cancer Center. Other displays may highlight innovations from other companies that UH works with or promote UH programs, institutes, and research.
“Depending on the type of medical meeting presented (at the Global Center), we can gear our presentation,” Dr. Ros says. “The beauty of imaging is if there’s a medical congress based on neurology, neurosciences or neurosurgery, we can show images pertinent to that specialty. We can do the same for cardiology or oncology. If there’s a neurological meeting, let’s say, we can showcase what the University Hospitals Case Medical Center Neurologic Institute is capable of providing.”
Cleveland is ripe for showcasing medical advancements, Dr. Ros says, citing avant-garde medical technologies used at University Hospitals Health System, the Cleveland Clinic, the Louis Stokes V.A. Medical Center, Metro Health Medical Center, and others.
“There’s plenty of medical intensity in this town,” he says. “There are a number of people on an almost daily basis who come from around the world for medical care or to see innovative equipment in our medical centers.”
Smith agrees that the Global Center pays homage to Cleveland’s superior medical community. “Cleveland is home to some of the best healthcare institutions, prestigious universities, and medical technology companies in the nation,” he says. “The center gives Cleveland a stage for this to be realized.”
The project did not happen sooner, Dr. Ros says, because Cleveland lacked large, attractive exhibition halls akin to those found in Chicago, Boston, and other cities. Dedicating the center to medicine and healthcare is a unique hook that should attract healthcare professionals to the region.
“A medical convention center is unlike other convention centers that show cars one day and home appliances the next day,” Dr. Ros says. “The idea is to have not only all the trappings of a convention center with a hall, meeting rooms, and catering but also an anchor building with permanent exhibitions of medical products.”
Among the Global Center’s other confirmed tenants are the Cleveland Clinic, GE Healthcare, the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMMS), and Johnson Controls. Some media reports indicate that Cleveland State University and Cuyahoga Community College may receive rent-free space.
“I’m really looking forward to societies in all specialties,” Dr. Ros says, adding that, ultimately, the Global Center’s viability will depend on whether it attracts visitors to Cleveland. “With a bit of organizing, brushing up, and all the redevelopment in the new downtown, it’s an attractive area to come to, particularly if people have a reason to come.”
Smith is convinced this is the right time for this project.
“For Philips, creating the opportunity to use Cleveland to showcase healthcare technology in a larger, more public forum will only lead to great things for members of the Global Center, its visitors, and for this city,” he says. “This is shining a light on the fact that Cleveland is already a healthcare destination.”
For more information: healthcare.philips.com/main/about/company/partners/university_hospitals/