A corporate-philanthropy program that aims to raise as much as $150 million for the proposed Stanford Hospitals & Clinics expansion project has launched with six founding companies, Stanford Hospital announced Tuesday (Feb. 1).
The new Stanford Hospital Corporate Partners Program -- which includes Hewlett-Packard, Apple, eBay, Intel, Intuit and Oracle -- is expected to bring in the funds over the next 10 years. The corporate contributions would be in addition to $400 million the hospital hopes to raise in private donations.
The new $2 billion hospital is expected to be completed by 2018, with construction beginning as early as this year pending approval from the City of Palo Alto. It is part of a larger $3 billion expansion that includes Lucile Packard Children's Hospital, the Stanford University Medical Center and Stanford clinics.
"This is really unprecedented support from truly our world's most innovative companies," said Amir Dan Rubin, Stanford Hospital president and CEO. "It's unique to Stanford Hospital & Clinics and to Silicon Valley. You can't find these companies anyplace else.
"Stanford is known for a lot of innovations in health care," he added, pointing to development of the cyberknife and the first heart transplant, among many others.
Rubin pointed to how health-care delivery is changing, thanks to technology.
"There may be a lot of things we can do without people showing up here. You can get your prescriptions online and have interactions online. We can leverage expertise and give advice remotely."
Staff at both tech companies and Stanford "can learn a lot from one another," said Ron Johnson, Apple senior vice president of retail and a member of the Stanford Hospital board.
Johnson pointed to the 75 million visitors to Apple retail stores last quarter.
"We have learned a lot about innovative ways to serve customers well. Amir (Rubin) is very interested in seeing how that might be applied to patient experiences at the hospital. We think that's a great conversation to have," he said.
But, he added, the primary purpose of the partnership is philanthropic.
"We all see the benefit to our employees and our families of a world-class medical center in the backyard of our employees. At the same time we think that by opening up a dialogue between the companies and medical people at Stanford we can learn a lot from one another.
"It will ultimately produce a better hospital and patient experience that hasn't been imagined to date."
Johnson noted that prospective Apple employees ask about three common issues: concerning schools, housing and health care.
"In Palo Alto there are great schools, housing is pretty expensive, but having a world-class medical center is an unbelievable asset. That's the driving force behind the partnership," he said.
Rubin, who joined Stanford Hospital in early January after serving as chief operating officer at the UCLA Health System in Los Angeles, noted that UCLA "has a track record of success in developing patient-centered clinical environments."
"Our vision is to heal humanity through science, one patient at a time. We've often done that through innovation. How we handle a lot more information, such as genetic profiles, how we interact with providers, physicians, share information across settings -- these are things we're beginning to think about.
"Often processes are not designed with the patient/customer in mind; these are new walls we need to break down. How do we organize teams? How do we get that information out to the right people? ... (This is) a model of health care here that could be a global model for the future," he said.