On Wednesday, September 28, 2016, Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) celebrated the opening of its new Building for Transformative Medicine with a special dedication event for 150 of the hospital’s major donors and closest friends. Located at 60 Fenwood Road—and connected to the hospital’s main buildings at 70 and 75 Francis Street—the new building co-locates researchers and clinicians in neurosciences, orthopaedics, rheumatology, and immunology, helping to accelerate the pace of research and bring treatments and cures to patients more quickly. As BWH President Betsy Nabel, MD, remarked, “We are building on the Brigham’s excellence in patient care, research, and education, and charting a new, exciting course in medicine—for the Brigham, for the city of Boston, and for patients and families around the globe.”
Nabel took the opportunity to share some exciting news about hospital’s $1 billion Life.Giving.Breakthroughs. campaign to transform medicine. “Tonight, I am proud to share we have exceeded expectations and surpassed our $1 billion fundraising goal—two years ahead of schedule,” she explained, adding, “With so much momentum and progress, we have no intention of slowing down. I am thrilled to announce our decision to extend our campaign goal to $1.5 billion.”
Noting the new building will build on BWH’s excellence in care, research, and education, Nabel then introduced a patient perspectives video to demonstrate how BWH’s transformative, collaborative approach is already helping patients and their families.
Following the video, guests were treated to an engaging panel discussion moderated by award-winning TV journalist Meredith Vieira and featuring Michael Brenner, MD, chief of the Division of Rheumatology, Immunology, and Allergy, James Kang, MD, chair of the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, and Martin Samuels, MD, founding chair of the Department of Neurology. The panelists discussed how the building will transform the practice of medicine and bring new hope to patients and their families.
Samuels shared, “Patients in pain shouldn’t need to know if they have a neurological disease, a neurosurgical disease, an orthopedic disease, a rheumatologic disease, or a psychiatric disease. All they need to know is, they’re going to come to the Building for Transformative Medicine, and we’re going to take care of them.”
Reflecting on the many ways the new building will foster collaboration, Kang discussed the spontaneous interactions between clinicians and researchers that wouldn’t otherwise take place. “Some of the greatest inventions in medicine occurred through serendipity, with penicillin being just one example of this.”
Brenner closed the discussion with reflections on the hope patients, clinicians and researchers have for the future. “I have more hope based on the enthusiasm, the excellence, the high targets that are set, by our institution, by our researchers, by our physicians. It really is infectious. And I think when you have that mix and it’s working, it raises everyone up.”
The evening concluded with Nabel, Vieira, the panelists, State Representative Jeffrey Sanchez, BWH board chair Scott Sperling, Life.Giving.Breakthroughs. campaign cabinet chairs Jack Connors, John Fish, and Melissa Weiner Janfaza joining together on stage for the formal ribbon cutting and proclamation.
“I declare the Building for Transformative Medicine open,” Nabel announced.