HCN News & Notes

Baystate Medical Center Awarded $3,949,912 from Massachusetts Life Sciences Center

SPRINGFIELD — Baystate Medical Center has been awarded $3,949,912 in grant funding from the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center (MLSC) in a competitive program designed to sustain the Commonwealth’s competitive edge in advancing human health.

“This support will expand our capacity to perform efficient and compliant clinical trials by building a Clinical Trials Unit (CTU) at Baystate Medical Center, speed medical advances, and make novel treatments available to our diverse patient population. We are grateful to MLSC, our legislators, the Governor and the citizens of the Commonwealth for this investment in the future of biomedical research in Western Massachusetts,” said Dr. Peter Friedmann, chief Research officer for Baystate Health and associate dean for Research at UMass Medical School – Baystate.

“For Baystate Health and our UMass Medical School – Baystate, it is an opportunity to increase access to innovative treatments for the patients and communities we serve, engage faculty and staff in impactful clinical research, expand collaborations with academic and industry partners, and improve the productivity and efficiency with which we conduct clinical trials,” he added.

Baystate is among 11 hospitals, colleges, and other institutions to receive a total of $30.95 million in capital-grant funding to support the state’s global leadership in the life-sciences sector. There were 45 applications. The funding, provided through the MLSC’s Competitive Capital Program, is designed to support advances in human health, accelerate innovation in the areas of clinical and translational research, and expand the capacity of life-sciences development and job growth across the Commonwealth.

The MLSC’s Competitive Capital Program invests capital dollars through a competitive process in high-potential economic-development projects that promise to make significant contributions to the state’s life-sciences ecosystem. The program aims to address funding gaps in capital dollars, industry support, and federal funding for educational institutions, incubators, research institutions, and workforce-training programs, while also catalyzing private and philanthropic investment to match state investment and preparing the life-sciences workforce of the future.

“The grant will expand local capacity to perform clinical trials of new innovations in digital health and medical devices right here in Springfield,” said state Sen. Eric Lesser, who worked to pass the Massachusetts Life Sciences Bill, which funded this grant program, as chairman of the Committee on Economic Development and Emerging Technologies.

“We know that Massachusetts is a national leader in the health sciences,” he went on, “and Western Massachusetts is no exception, with new research happening at places like the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and advances in treatment happening regularly at Baystate Medical Center, which makes this new partnership so exciting. This will benefit the entire Massachusetts life-sciences system and keep Western Massachusetts on the map in this critical and growing field.”