As an Associate Dean for Critical Care Medicine at the University of Minnesota, I am responsible for fostering collaboration across schools and Deans to develop the Center for Integrative Research in Critical Care (MCIRCC). Over the next few years, the Center will establish a portfolio of clinical expertise, innovative research, and graduate medical education. Rather than disrupting traditional departmental relationships and finances, this new Center will foster a collaborative environment across campus.
The MCIRCC Center for Integrative Research in Critical Care (MCIRCC) has more than 20 ongoing research projects. The researchers are developing new technologies and leveraging existing research projects. One such project focuses on COVID-19. Its novel negative pressure helmet reduces the risk of viral transmission and improves patient safety. The helmet also serves as a personal protective device for soldiers during transport.
Max Harry Weil
The Weil Family Foundation has donated $10 million to the University of Michigan for a new critical care institute, now known as the Max Harry Weil, Center for Integrative Health Research and Innovation. The institute was previously known as the Michigan Center for Integrative Research in Critical Care. It is a hub for critical care research, including basic, clinical, and information sciences. The Weil name is one of the most prestigious in the field, as his contributions helped improve the care of critically ill patients.
Grand Challenge competition
The MCIRCC hosts the Grand Challenge competition every year to fund groundbreaking, milestone-driven research. Prior competitions have focused on traumatic brain injury and sepsis, but the MCIRCC is expanding its scope to include cardiovascular arrest and pediatric critical care. The Center is proud of its award winners and is pleased to support them in their efforts. However, the competition is not without controversy.
Career development program
The Michigan Scholars Program is designed to develop a future workforce of clinician-scientists dedicated to emergency critical care. The Scholars will complete didactic and hands-on training in data management and clinical trial design, as well as research skills and scientific presentations. This program will be housed at the Center for Integrative Research in Critical Care. Scholars will receive personalized career development plans and mentor feedback from experienced clinician-scientists in the field of emergency medicine.
Collaborations with Bone Marrow Transplant and Solid Tumor Services
Collaborative clinical trials are conducted at OHSU by doctors who specialize in bone marrow transplants and other solid tumors. The Northwest Marrow Transplant Program, which includes OHSU Hospital, Doernbecher Children’s Hospital, and Legacy Health’s Good Samaritan Medical Center, was the first multihospital effort to receive accreditation. The collaboration has a number of benefits for patients and their families, including housing assistance and financial support. Patients can also receive transplant treatments that are not available anywhere else in the region. Researchers at the Knight Cancer Institute also develop new transplant techniques that reduce risk in patients who need the treatment.
Impact on patient care
Critical care is a vital component of health care systems around the world. Critically ill patients usually receive care in intensive care units (ICUs) staffed with highly specialized health professionals. However, delivering quality critical care is difficult in many settings, with resource limitations leading to high rates of disease and mortality. Several factors limit the delivery of effective critical care, including a lack of epidemiologic data, limited context-specific evidence, and institutional barriers to life-saving interventions.