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Baylor College of Medicine News

Children’s Hospital of San Antonio to work with College, Texas Children’s to elevate pediatric care in San Antonio

A new collaboration announced today between the Children’s Hospital of San Antonio, Baylor College of Medicine (BCM), and Texas Children’s Hospital (Texas Children’s) helps to ensure that the children of San Antonio and South Texas now will have access to world-class pediatric care. The Children’s Hospital of San Antonio, the first and only freestanding children’s hospital in the heart of the Alamo City, has finalized agreements with Texas’ top pediatric medical providers. Baylor College of Medicine will recruit, employ, and oversee physicians. Texas Children’s Hospital will provide consulting and clinical expertise for the Children’s Hospital of San Antonio.

Texas Children’s Hospital is the nation’s largest and most comprehensive women and children’s hospital, and along with its academic partner, Baylor College of Medicine, has more than 2.5 million patient encounters each year system-wide. Consistently recognized and ranked nationally and internationally for excellence in pediatric and maternal/fetal health care services, education and research, Texas Children’s and Baylor have been serving the children and families of Texas for more than 55 years, including many from San Antonio.

"This is a truly historic day for the children and families of San Antonio, South Texas and beyond," said Gene Woods, COO of CHRISTUS Health System, which owns the Children’s Hospital of San Antonio. "We are proud to join together with the best institutions in pediatric health care because all children deserve the best."

"Our children have always been first," said Pat Carrier, president and CEO of CHRISTUS Santa Rosa Health System. "The physicians and staff at Baylor College of Medicine and Texas Children’s Hospital share the same mindset. As three Texas home-grown, not-for-profit organizations, we know the needs of Texas children best. This alliance is one giant step in delivering the world-class care we set out to create last April."

CHRISTUS Santa Rosa, the only faith-based, not-for-profit health system in South Texas announced plans in April 2012 to transform its downtown San Antonio campus to create the Children’s Hospital of San Antonio, a world-class, freestanding hospital anchored by a broad, integrated network of community-based services and partners. Leaders from CHRISTUS Santa Rosa, Baylor College of Medicine, and Texas Children’s Hospital began talks after The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio announced it was terminating its long-time relationship with CHRISTUS Santa Rosa.

"This alliance of Baylor College of Medicine, CHRISTUS Santa Rosa, and Texas Children’s Hospital ensures that the children and families of San Antonio will have access to the best care possible," said BCM President and CEO Dr. Paul Klotman. "Baylor and Texas Children’s are able to provide a level of expertise in a short period of time that otherwise would take decades to build. In the near future, we plan to increase our commitment to the Children’s Hospital, with both education and research programs."

"We were immediately attracted to the opportunity to collaborate with CHRISTUS Santa Rosa, to realize its vision of a children’s hospital that is a center of excellence in pediatric care, education, and research," said Mark A. Wallace, president and CEO of Texas Children’s. "The Children’s Hospital of San Antonio will not only be a great resource for the families of San Antonio, we know it will ultimately benefit all the children of Texas, and we are very excited to be a part of that." The non-profit, Houston-based Texas Children’s Hospital is ranked fourth among pediatric hospitals in the nation according to U.S. News & World Report.

"The depth of research, which is Baylor College of Medicine's hallmark, far surpasses what we've seen in this region," said Marcy Doderer, FACHE, vice president/administrator of the Children’s Hospital of San Antonio. "We need expanded research to help find care methods and cures for pediatric populations who are dealing with diabetes, cystic fibrosis and cancer."

Baylor College of Medicine ranks 17th nationally among all medical schools in National Institutes of Health (NIH) funding and first in Texas. Its department of pediatrics is ranked 3rd in the country for NIH funding.

"We are actively recruiting 50-70 academic and private practice physicians to leverage future research opportunities and to expand our network of care," Doderer said.

Dr. Mark Gilger will serve as pediatrician-in-chief for Children’s Hospital of San Antonio and BCM vice-chair of pediatrics for San Antonio effective March 1. Gilger will transition from his role as section head and service chief of pediatric gastroenterology at Baylor and Texas Children’s in Houston.

Baylor College of Medicine trains more than 3,000 medical, graduate, nurse anesthesia and physician assistantstudents, as well as residents and post-doctoral fellows. BCM has four schools – the Medical School, the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, the School of Allied Health Sciences and the National School of Tropical Medicine. Together with Texas Children’s, it trains more pediatricians and pediatric subspecialists than any other Texas institution.

"Texas Children’s and Baylor cover the entire spectrum of pediatric disease prevention, care and treatment, with expertise ranging from the most common to the most unusual and rare medicalconditions affecting infants, children and adolescents," said Dr. Mark Kline, chair of pediatrics at BCM and physician-in-chief at Texas Children’s. "With CHRISTUS Santa Rosa, we are bringing together institutions that have a shared mission and vision to serve the entire community."

CHRISTUS Santa Rosa believes the necessary ingredients for a world-class pediatric hospital include excellent clinical programs across all pediatric sub-specialties; a leading-edge facility designed and equipped specifically to treat children; and a full complement of the best and brightest pediatric physicians, nurses, and staff. Through our collaboration with BCM and Texas Children’s, this recipe for success will transform to reality.

"From the humblest part of my being, I can honestly say that the Children’s Hospital of San Antonio is the best place for the sickest child; the only place for every child," Carrier said. "And we didn’t have to go any farther than Baylor College of Medicine and Texas Children’s Hospital - right in our own backyard - to find collaborators to work with us to create a world-class children’s hospital with the vision that all children deserve access to quality care."

"Our future with Children’s Hospital of San Antonio holds infinite possibilities for the education of future physicians, providing outstanding patient care for children and adolescents and, importantly, providing access to clinical research studies," Klotman said. "We look forward to many celebrations in the future as we grow existing programs, create new programs and fully integrate Children’s Hospital of San Antonio into the academic missions of Baylor College of Medicine."

The transformation and construction of the Children’s Hospital of San Antonio began in late August 2012. Renowned industry design experts Stanley Beaman & Sears, Overland Partners, and WHRArchitects are integrating all of the critical care components and world-class amenities with San Antonio’s deep historical and spiritual ties to CHRISTUS Santa Rosa, creating a crown jewel in the heart of downtown.

Children will continue to receive high-level, compassionate care throughout the construction process. Construction is expected to be complete in 2014. Follow our progress at ourchildrenwillbefirst.com.