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By Richard Asinof
PROVIDENCE – A new task force is being established to explore ways for Care New England, Lifespan and Brown University to collaborate in the research arena.
The announcement was made on Monday evening as part of a panel discussion at the annual meeting at Greater Providence Chamber of Commerce, featuring Dennis Keefe, president and CEO of Care New England, Dr. Timothy J. Babineau, president and CEO of Lifespan, and Brown University President Christina H. Paxson.
“In today’s health care environment, with increasing competition for decreasing federal funding dollars, there is perhaps nothing more important than key collaborations,” Keefe told Providence Business News. “This task force, now in its infancy, seeks to explore ways for Care New England and Lifespan, and ultimately Brown University, to collaborate with the goal of growing our local knowledge economy, increasing research funding, and creating jobs that will increase our capabilities, enhance our discoveries and improve patient outcomes.”
The first meeting of the task force will be held after the first of the year, with Babineau and Keefe providing the initial “charge” to the task force members. It is expected that a more detailed charge will evolve over time. The composition of the task force is still in its formative stage.
The focus of the task force will be to look at potential areas of collaboration to grow the research infrastructure in Rhode Island, according to May Kernan, spokeswoman for Care New England. “This is very good news for the state,” she said.
The two hospital systems attracted more than $100 million in research funds in 2011.