Duke Endowment Advancing HIT

South Carolina and North Carolina unfortunately share burdensome health issues such as high rates of diabetes, stroke, obesity, heart disease, and health disparities. The Duke Endowment www.dukeendowment.org, a private foundation based in Charlotte North Carolina, has awarded $15.3 million in grant funding to Health Sciences South Carolina (HSSC) to help both states provide the data needed to improve healthcare.

This award is the third multi-million dollar grant made to HSSC by the foundation. The endowment awarded HSSC $21 million in 2006 and $11.25 million in 2011 to support centers such as the North Carolina Quality Center www.ncqualitycenter.org and the Clinical Effectiveness and Patient Safety Center http://smartstatesc.or/clinical-effectivenss-and-patient-safety.

“Health is our most precious commodity and chronic diseases such as diabetes, stroke, and obesity threaten not just health but also the economic and social health of North and South Carolina,” said Minor Shaw, Chair of the Duke Endowment Board of Trustees.

The third grant just funded brings The Duke Endowment’s total funding to HSSC to $47.55 million. HSSC will use the funding to build upon the infrastructure and enable the use of data to improve health in both states.

HSSC will collaborate with researchers in the health systems and medical schools of the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill www.med.unc.edu, Duke University Medical School http://medschool.duke.edu, and Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center www.wakehealth.edu.

According to HSSC President and CEO, Dr. Helga Ripen, “HSSC has shown that in South Carolina with the right IT infrastructure and tools, university-health system collaborations are very effective at improving health through data driven action and research and are more competitive in securing external funding for that research.”

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