Six founding children’s hospitals have signed an agreement to form the Sanford Children’s Genomic Medicine Consortium, a collaboration of children’s hospitals inspired by the vision of philanthropist Denny Sanford.
Founding members include Sanford Children’s; Children’s Hospital Los Angeles; Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego; Children’s Hospital Colorado; Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota; and Banner Children’s at Diamond Children’s Medical Center, Tucson, Arizona.
“Bringing all of these great facilities and brilliant minds together is a major step in improving treatments and finding cures for what ails kids,” said Denny Sanford. “There is clear value in bringing these teams together with unified goals and my hope is that it will speed up necessary advancements so children won’t have to suffer.”
The consortium is committed to the betterment of the health of all children through the integration of genomic medicine into pediatric care. Genomic medicine focuses on the use of genetic and genomic information to personalize care for each child, allowing for improved treatment outcomes in a host of common and rare childhood diseases.
“This groundbreaking collaboration among premier children’s hospitals and leaders in genomic and pediatric care will help set the standard for sharing resources and collaborating in research and education in personalized medicine for children,” said Gene Hoyme, M.D., chief of genetics and genomic medicine at Sanford Health and medical director for the Sanford Children’s Genomic Medicine Consortium. “As a pediatric clinical geneticist, I’m excited about the improved clinical outcomes that the consortium’s cutting-edge genomic medical innovations will bring to the millions of young patients served by our members.”
In addition to setting a new standard for the clinical practice of personalized medicine in children, the consortium will also improve pediatric care through innovative joint research programs and genomic health care workforce development. The combined research capabilities of the member hospitals will expedite genetic and genomic discovery through economies of scale and access to a large and racially and ethnically diverse population. The consortium serves as a focal point for developing relationships with industry and governmental entities and provides for shared training opportunities for physicians, genetic counselors, nurses and other health professionals.
The consortium has also established an external scientific advisory board with representation from industry leaders such as the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American College of Medical Genetics and Genomics and the National Human Genome Research Institute to provide guidance on the scientific direction of the group’s efforts. Sanford Health is providing administrative staffing for the consortium.