As the new academic year approaches, it is an opportune time to reflect back over the past year. While we have continued to face the challenges of declining support from the state, I am pleased to report that through your hard work, the Medical University is moving forward and achieving even greater success. The list that follows is just a sample of the many accomplishments of the past year.
The Medical University again was listed by U. S. News and World Report as national leaders in seven different specialty areas, including: rheumatology, gastroenterology, otolaryngology, children’s heart care, nephrology, gynecology, and for the first time, orthopaedics. We congratulate all of the faculty and staff members in these areas, and the many others programs here that similarly deserved to be ranked and we trust will be soon. The American Heart Association again recognized the Medical University as the only hospital in our state that achieves the highest national levels of care for patients with coronary heart disease, heart failure and stroke.
On the research front, we set another record for funding, with more than $230 million secured by our scientists. Our funding from the National Institutes of Health grew, even without inclusion of the extra support through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. In order to accommodate further growth of the research enterprise, construction of the Drug Discovery and Bioengineering buildings was launched this year.
In the education arena, after five years of hard work, the South Carolina College of Pharmacy received its inaugural accreditation. We opened and dedicated the new James B. Edwards College of Dental Medicine building, which arguably is the most advanced dental clinical education facility in the country. In the College of Medicine, Dr. Etta Pisano, an international leader in the field of radiology was recruited as Vice President for Medical Affairs and Dean in order to help us achieve even greater success ahead. That pathway will be illuminated in part by a campus-wide strategic plan that is nearing completion and focuses on four transformational areas: innovation/technology, entrepreneurialism; interprofessional work; and globalization.
While we do not yet have audited financial information for the past year, the preliminary numbers indicate that all of our units have managed very successfully, and the hospital in particular deserves credit for a remarkable improvement in their fiscal performance.
One of the best measures of how we are viewed within the community is the level of private gifts that individuals, companies and foundation give to support our work. Again this year, despite the challenges in the global economy, we set a record for private giving, with nearly $77 million raised. In the process, we exceeded our Capital Campaign goal a year ahead of schedule.
As we look to the year ahead, we know that there will be continuing challenges for the state budget, and consequently our University appropriations. Nevertheless, our ability to manage through these difficult times, in large part due to the hard work of faculty and staff members throughout the University, allows us to award pay-for-performance increases. In the near future, each of the respective human resource departments will be communicating to their constituents about these pay-for-performance plans.
I want to conclude by thanking each and every one of you for your contributions to the success of the Medical University. Through your collective efforts, we have been able to weather many challenges and emerge even stronger.
With best wishes,
Ray Greenberg, M.D., Ph.D.