The Exceptional Huntsman Cancer Institute
Jul 22, 2015 1:00 PM
This month, the Huntsman Cancer Institute achieved a significant milestone—the designation of Comprehensive Cancer Center by the National Cancer Institute, joining an elite group of just over 40 cancer centers across the nation with this award. This designation reflects on the remarkable success the Huntsman Cancer Institute has had in catalyzing collaboration across the health sciences and university. They bring together outstanding basic and clinical researchers and clinicians—from surgery to pharmacy to nursing to medical oncology to communications and more—to tackle cancer and to care for patients compassionately.
When Mary Beckerle tells the story about our recent review by the NCI, she will explain that we have achieved the pinnacle of success-but she is too modest to explain how it really works. So let me do that… After over a year of preparation, our team prepares a massive grant—hundreds and hundreds of pages—that reports all we’ve done in the past five years and what we plan to do in the next five. A team of 20 some experts from across the country review it and then spend several days on campus scrutinizing us in person. At the end, they write a report, and they give us a score. For those of you not familiar with the rating system, I’ll give you a primer.
In the hierarchy of scores, once you exceed the category of satisfactory, the positive scores start with good, very good, excellent, outstanding, and finally, that all desirable “exceptional.” Quite a few steps, quite a high bar, against a lot of serious competition across the nation, to be deemed “exceptional.” What we’re celebrating this month is that the Huntsman Cancer Institute’s overall rating by those highly esteemed and critical NIH experts was—not good, very good, excellent or even outstanding. It was “exceptional.”
This overall score represents a composite of scores for individual pieces—programs, cores, even institutional support (yes, even Pres Pershing and I were scored), as well as the most important—the leadership—Center Director. What Mary may not tell you, but I will, is that HCI was rated “exceptional” for its Center Director—a perfect partner to our exceptional benefactors. We are fortunate to have both.
As we look forward to the next five years of the Huntsman Cancer Institute, we are anticipating the opening of our new research building, “Huntsman phase IV” which the Huntsman family and community leaders are so generously supporting. We will continue to build the superb quality teams of scientists who utilize world class resources such as the Utah Population Database and ARUP Laboratories, and draw collaborations from Nursing, Pharmacy, Communications, Engineering Arts & Entertainment, and the Medical School, among many others across the University. Most importantly, we are committed to, in the words of Jon and Karen Huntsman, “eradicating cancer.” In this journey, we welcome the partnership with Susan Sheehan, the new President and COO of Huntsman Cancer Foundation, and Peter Huntsman, President of Huntsman Corporation and the new CEO of the Huntsman Cancer Foundation.
Please join me congratulating the exceptional Dr. Mary Beckerle, her exceptional team of faculty and staff at the Huntsman Cancer Institute, and our most exceptional champions, Jon and Karen Huntsman and family.comments powered by Disqus