New building fosters closer collaboration between clinicians and researchers
The Ambulatory Care Center (ACC), a seven-story, 258,000-square-foot facility scheduled to open this summer, will house the Clinical Facility for Innovative Research and Education.
UMass Medical School and UMass Memorial Medical Center have created the Clinical Facility for Innovative Research and Education (CFIRE), a center that will combine the basic science innovation that has made the Medical School a biomedical powerhouse with the Medical Center’s research potential. CFIRE will be located in the $120 million Ambulatory Care Center (ACC), a seven-story, 258,000-square-foot facility that is scheduled to open this summer. The center will be linked to a number of clinical programs in the building, including the hospital’s Centers of Excellence—Heart and Vascular, Diabetes and Endocrinology, Musculoskeletal and Cancer—providing closer collaboration between clinicians and researchers.
“The Medical Center and Medical School are in a position to bring tremendous benefit to our community and the Central New England region through cutting-edge science, state-of-the-art clinical care, and the training of Massachusetts physicians,” said Walter H. Ettinger Jr., MD, MBA, president of UMass Memorial Medical Center and associate vice provost for Clinical and Population Health Research at UMMS. “This building will be a unique harmonization of clinical care, research and education on every floor, as one example of how the Medical Center and Medical School are aligning around the Centers of Excellence.”
“We have developed a new and unconventional vision of how to move UMass Medical School to the next level of clinical and translational research, and that vision is embodied in this ACC building design,” said UMMS Provost & Executive Deputy Chancellor Terence R. Flotte, MD, dean of the School of Medicine. “The essential element is co-localizing clinical care and clinical research in adjacent space on each floor. This allows physician-investigators and patients to move seamlessly from where they receive treatment to where they can participate in trials of investigative therapies. We believe this building and the programmatic design within it will catalyze dramatic advances in the application of stem cell technology and molecular therapy that will reach the patients of Central Massachusetts, New England, the nation and beyond.”
The facility is designed to bring together a number of key components necessary to conduct clinical outcomes research and represents a turning point for research efforts at UMMS and UMass Memorial. Over the years, the institutions have recruited world-class innovators in the basic laboratory sciences and have established one of the most respected research institutions in the country. Leaders in the fields of RNA, molecular medicine and gene therapy call UMass home. And now, building on that foundation, a number of brilliant clinician-researchers who share the vision to become a powerhouse in clinical and translational research have joined the institutions as well. “We’re going after cardiovascular disease, cancer, ALS, diabetes and more,” said Dr. Flotte.
The Medical School and Medical Center have sought to foster long-term collaborative partnerships for clinical and translational research among UMass-based researchers and community partners and has solicited input from community leaders. One result is the location of the Clinical Research Center on the first floor of the ACC building, creating a entry point that will make the facility more welcoming and easier for patients and visitors to navigate.