Jones School of Business Hosts Texas Medical Center CEO and Australian Diplomats
In an effort to bridge the Houston business community and the Jesse H. Jones Graduate School of Business at Rice University, Robert Robbins, M.D., CEO and president of the Texas Medical Center and Australian diplomats were invited to speak with students about the work they are currently doing in the health care industry.
In Houston, the Texas Medical Center is emerging as a health science cluster that is competitive with medical centers across the country and around the world. Robbins has been at the helm of the medical center for the past three years and has been pushing for collaboration among institutions to make it a world leader in treatment and research.
“We are the largest medical center in the world,” Robbins said. “We have 110,000 employees and 7.2 million hospital visits per year across 56 institutions that make up the medical center.”
As the landscape of health care changes, so, too, does the way care is provided and paid for. The Australian government is also looking for innovative solutions to keeping their health care system in tune with the changing demands of the field of health care.
“For many years, our health care system has delivered world-class care to Australians, but like others around the world, it is now under threat,” said Susan Ley, Australian Health Minister.
Ley and other Australian diplomats toured the Texas Medical Center to see how they are dealing with the issues that Australia faces, including an aging population, chronic diseases and the ever-growing consumer expectations.
“As the Australian Health Minister, I am proud to invite partners from the United States to work with our Australian researchers and companies to create more efficient health systems, more effective treatments and a healthier future for us all,” Ley said.
At its core, collaboration is the key to success for the Texas Medical Center as a whole, whether it be training Baylor College of Medicine residents at Ben Taub Hospital or staffing Memorial Hermann Hospital with The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston physicians.
In the Houston community, the medical center is regarded as a reliable leg in the local economy and it fosters innovation and commercialization. When Robbins started working at the Texas Medical Center, he saw an opportunity to take the innovation that was already happening to the next level.
“One of my very good friends who is a heart surgeon here was working out out of his garage on his ideas, and one of my first projects was to create a central location for these surgeons, students, engineers and others to collaborate and innovate,” said Robbins. “The environment we have created with TMCx and JLabs with Johnson & Johnson allows the fundamental discovery to be commercialized to be made into new drugs and new medical devices to improve human health.”
Over the next five years, Robbins and the Texas Medical Center plan to cement Houston as the “Third Coast” and bring even more innovation and improvements to the city through TMC3 which will house the future of the medical center.