With the goal of taking additional concrete steps to improve the health of children in northern Nevada, the Nell J. Redfield Foundation has pledged funding support in the amount of $900,000 over a five-year period beginning in 2015 for a joint Chair of Pediatrics at the University of Nevada School of Medicine/Pediatrician-in-Chief of Renown Children’s Hospital.
“The health and wellbeing of children in northern Nevada has long been a priority for the Redfield Foundation,” said foundation Director Jerry Smith ’03 (honorary degree). “It is our hope that the partnership between the School of Medicine and Renown Health will improve the welfare of local children, our community’s most vulnerable population.”
The position represents one of the first steps in fulfilling an agreement endorsed in principle by the School of Medicine and Renown Health. The proposed agreement is being submitted to the Board of Trustees of Renown Health and the Board of Regents of the Nevada System of Higher Education for the final approval.
The agreement came from the need to significantly increase the number of physicians who train and practice in Nevada. The collaborative goal to transform medical care and medical education in northern Nevada includes expanding the medical school to a full four-year academic campus while enlisting the critical support of physicians from Renown to participate as faculty at the medical school.
The joint chair position, to be filled by a qualified candidate in mid-2015 following a nationwide search, will report to both the dean of the School of Medicine and the president and chief executive officer of Renown Health. The role represents the leadership needed to expand significantly the undergraduate and graduate medical education programs at the medical school while simultaneously serving as the clinical half of the dyad leadership model, directing the expansion of services and holding accountability for medical outcomes, quality, education and physician relations at Renown Children’s Hospital.
“Generous support from the Redfield Foundation not only signifies their support of this crucial role within the medical community, but also their support of the vision of healthcare in our community,” said Anthony D. Slonim, M.D., DrPH, president and CEO of Renown Health. “A joint Chair of Pediatrics and Pediatrician-in-Chief truly marks the launch of a new era in the collaboration between the School of Medicine and Renown, and will improve medical care for children in our community and region through continued innovation and research.”
“The School of Medicine is so fortunate to benefit from the support of the Nell J. Redfield Foundation in so many ways, but this joint venture with Renown Health is particularly special. The recruitment of an outstanding new Chair of Pediatrics and Pediatrician-in-Chief, with Redfield Foundation support, has the potential to transform the medical care of children in Northern Nevada. This is very exciting,” said Thomas L. Schwenk, M.D., dean of the School of Medicine.
During the past three decades, the Redfield Foundation has provided substantial support to the University, including the Redfield Campus, the William N. Pennington Health Sciences Building, the Nell J. Redfield Foundation Auditorium in the Davidson Mathematics and Science Center, the School of the Arts Act One project and the Morrill Hall renovation. The foundation has supported the University of Nevada School of Medicine Student Outreach Clinic and Sports Medicine Fellowships, and has pledged significant support of research efforts at the School of Medicine.
The foundation also established the Nell J. Redfield Foundation Scholarship Program for National Merit Scholars at the University of Nevada, Reno, and has supported a variety of student success programs, including the academic boot camps. The foundation’s generosity extends to nearly every corner of the University, including the Orvis School of Nursing, intercollegiate athletics, the renewable energy program and many other areas across campus.
With the support of the Nell J. Redfield Foundation, Renown Children’s Hospital added 16 private inpatient rooms to better accommodate pediatric patients and their families. Facility improvements for The Pregnancy Center, a service dedicated to providing accessible, high-quality, culturally sensitive, pre- and postnatal care to northern Nevada’s underserved, uninsured and underinsured pregnant women, were also made possible through additional support from the foundation.