Gary and Mary West Foundation today committed $45 million to create the West Wireless Health Institute, one of world's first medical research organizations dedicated to advancing health and well-being through the use of wireless technologies. Scripps Health has signed on as the founding health care affiliate, with Qualcomm as a founding sponsor.
Gary West is Founder and Chair of the Institute's board of directors. He will be joined on the board by Dr. Eric J. Topol, Chief Academic Officer at Scripps Health and holder of the Gary and Mary West Chair of Innovative Medicine, and Donald Jones, vice president of Health and Life Sciences at Qualcomm. The Institute is headquartered in San Diego, California, the global hub for wireless life science research and development.
“We believe this emerging field will completely transform health care as we know it,” said West. “The Institute aims to be the catalyst to move ideas and concepts quickly into reality, bringing cost-effective wireless health solutions to doctors, patients and their families.”
Under the leadership of Dr. Topol, the Institute and its research team will conduct clinical research on solutions to better prevent, diagnose, manage and treat major health conditions, ranging from Alzheimer's to heart disease to obesity. The Institute will build a base of biomedical and bioengineering expertise to ensure that devices in development improve the existing level of care, and are safe, reliable, and cost effective.
“The rapid and remarkable progress in wireless sensors - continuously tracking important parameters such as blood sugar, blood pressure, all vital signs, sleep state and even caloric intake and expenditure - has the potential to change medicine in a radical and unprecedented way,” said Dr. Topol. “Not only does this fit the optimal models of individualized and consumer-driven health care, but there is tremendous potential to upgrade quality of care, reduce the cost burden and shift away from reactive to preventive medicine.”
Jones and the Institute's engineering team will lead the integration of wireless technology with the clinical research activity.
“The Institute will enable inventors, medical device makers and others to hatch, nurture and refine their ideas for wireless health solutions,” said Jones. “We believe the launch of the West Wireless Health Institute will lead to levels of care never before seen in the delivery of healthcare.”
The Board of Directors has launched a global search for a chief executive officer to lead the Institute. For more information on the West Wireless Health Institute, please visit www.westwirelesshealth.com.
ABOUT THE WEST WIRELESS HEALTH INSTITUTE
The West Wireless Health Institute is one of the first medical research organizations in the world supporting the exploration and application of wireless technologies to advance human health and well-being. Along with Scripps Health and Qualcomm, the Institute is fostering an unprecedented convergence of science, medicine, engineering and technology to change the way health care is delivered. The West Wireless Health Institute is based in San Diego, California.
ABOUT SCRIPPS HEALTH
Founded in 1924 by philanthropist Ellen Browning Scripps, Scripps Health is a $2 billion nonprofit community health system based in San Diego, Calif. Scripps treats a half-million patients annually through the dedication of 2,600 affiliated physicians and 12,700 employees among its five acute-care hospital campuses, home health care services, and an ambulatory care network of clinics, physician offices and outpatient centers. Recognized as a leader in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of disease, Scripps is also at the forefront of clinical research and graduate medical education. Scripps Health includes: Scripps Green Hospital, Scripps Memorial Hospital Encinitas, Scripps Memorial Hospital La Jolla, two Scripps Mercy Hospital campuses, 10 Scripps Clinic locations, nine Scripps Coastal Medical Center locations, Scripps Home Health Care Services and Scripps Clinical Research Services. More information can be found at www.scripps.org
Qualcomm Incorporated (Nasdaq: QCOM) is a leader in developing and delivering innovative digital wireless communications products and services based on CDMA and other advanced technologies. Headquartered in San Diego, Calif., Qualcomm is included in the S&P 100 Index, the S&P 500 Index and is a 2008 FORTUNE 500® company. For more information, please visit www.qualcomm.com.