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Penn Nursing Research Center Endowed:
NewCourtland Center for Transitions and Health
October 9, 2007, Volume 54, No. 7

NewCourtland Elder Services has made a $5 million endowment gift to the Center for Transitions and Health at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing in support of the Center’s work in the emerging field of transitional health.  In recognition of the gift, only the second of its kind at this level in the School’s history, the Center will be renamed the NewCourtland Center for Transitions and Health.

As the first center of its kind in the nation, the NewCourtland Center for Transitions and Health will serve as a hub for research, education and policy making related to the needs of those with chronic illnesses such as heart failure, diabetes or depression.

“We at Penn thank NewCourtland for the generosity and the foresight shown by this gift,” President Amy Gutmann said.  “Nursing science is critical to providing superior patient care, and the NewCourtland Center will provide a critically important venue for integrating knowledge, bringing together experts from multiple disciplines to better understand and solve the problems inherent in caring for the chronically ill.”

The NewCourtland Center’s goals include generating research findings related to:

• The trajectory of transitions in health among chronically ill populations and effects on caregivers.

• Mechanisms by which optimal health transitions are fostered.

• Effects of innovations in care to optimize health transitions.

• Use of evidence-based best practices to inform policy and practice.

“A gift like this makes an immeasurable difference in people’s lives and is a substantive and significant contribution to health care,” said Dr.  Afaf I. Meleis, dean of Penn Nursing. “It also represents a significant milestone in the Penn School of Nursing’s strategic goals in the science of nursing. To those of us involved daily in the fight to improve human health and advance science, this kind of generosity is heartwarming. We are most grateful.”  

“One of our most pressing societal challenges and opportunities is to provide high quality, cost-effective, equitable solutions to minimize the effects of a growing epidemic of chronic illness on the lives of individuals, their family caregivers and the health-care system,” said Dr. Mary Naylor, the Center director. 

“This collaboration is a natural progression for the NewCourtland Elder Services network, as NewCourtland seeks to provide older Philadelphians with state-of-the-art health care and support services to aid in their transition throughout the continuum of care,” said Gail Kass, president and CEO of NewCourtland Elder Services.  “Our affiliation with the University of Pennsylvania and the key findings of the research obtained by Dr. Naylor’s team will aid in NewCourtland’s ongoing quest to improve the quality of life of those we serve while equipping those who serve them with innovative tools to provide the highest quality of care.”

NewCourtland’s commitment comes as a first-year highlight in Penn Nursing’s $60 million Where Science Leads Campaign, the largest fund-raising effort in the School’s history (Almanac November 21, 2006). Launched in November 2006 and focused on building the future of nursing science, the Where Science Leads Campaign has targeted priority initiatives in nursing research, practice, academic programs and student financial aid as well as capital investments. 

NewCourtland’s President will present the check on October 19 at a special event at the Kimmel Center prior to the official launch of the Center at the School of Nursing on October 31.

Almanac - October 9, 2007, Volume 54, No. 7