Oct. 14, 2015

$25 million grant from James M. Cox Foundation aims to transform patient care at Emory

Photo of $25 million grant from James M. Cox Foundation aims to transform patient care at Emory

A $25 million grant from the James M. Cox Foundation will launch new patient-centered care models at Emory designed to improve patient experiences and outcomes. Prostate cancer care will be the initial clinical focus of the model.

"This generous gift from the Cox Foundation will create an opportunity to translate some of our most successful initiatives in Emory Medicine across key clinical areas and accelerate our ability to deliver the highest quality health care along with the most satisfactory patient and provider experience," said Christian Larsen, MD, DPhil, dean of Emory University School of Medicine and vice president for health center integration in Emory’s Woodruff Health Sciences Center. "Our primary concern is serving our patients and their families both effectively and efficiently."

The five-year initiative accelerates efforts already underway within Emory Medicine to create more streamlined and reliable care for patients and families. It includes:

Simplified appointment scheduling via new technologies;

Enhanced coordination among the entire health care team of urologists, radiologists, oncologists, allied health professionals and nurses;

Better communication with patients and families including 24-hour access to clinical staff;

Telemedicine options; and

Consistent and effective patient education and follow-up care.

"The idea for our gift is rooted in my recent experiences with the health care system," said Jim Kennedy, chairman of Cox Enterprises and grandson of company founder James M. Cox. "We want it to be easier and less stressful for patients and their families whenever they face serious health issues. The leaders at Emory will transform the health care experience not only for patients and families, but also for the entire health care team. We believe Emory can serve as a national model for improved health care delivery."

The gift creates two endowed chairs affiliated with the Winship Cancer Institute to enable Emory Medicine physician leaders to focus on change initiatives and research to improve patient care. John J. Pattaras, MD, associate professor of urology, and Peter Rossi, MD, associate professor of radiation oncology, who both specialize in prostate cancer, will help lead the new initiative.

Over the next five years, the transformative care model will be expanded to include other clinical areas throughout the Emory system, with opportunities for continuous improvement, and adoption of new technologies to best serve patients.

"Our transformative, patient-centered model will build on and accelerate current efforts and have a relentless focus on Lean practices and value at every step of patient care," says William Bornstein, MD, PhD, chief medical officer and chief quality officer for Emory Healthcare.

"Simply put, through this innovative investment we plan to build better systems that are efficient, effective, safe, and deeply satisfying for patients, families, and care teams. The best health care outcomes result from shared, coordinated, and streamlined processes, with each person having full confidence and knowledge of their individual roles and skills as well as the goals of the entire team."

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