July 25, 2007 – Orlando, FL – Together, Florida Hospital and the University of Central Florida (UCF) are making strides in cancer research. The two organizations are proud to announce that their joint endowment has provided more than $1.1 million of local funding for oncology research, thanks in part to the Central Florida community.
“Unfortunately, cancer is a disease that almost everyone can relate to,” said Leslie Aldrich, administrator of the Florida Hospital Cancer Institute. “The partnership between Florida Hospital and UCF benefits not only these two organizations but the community as a whole as we strive to further our research of cancer so that we one day might find a cure.”
The endowment for cancer research was created when Florida Hospital donated $1 million from its annual Gala in 1994 to UCF which was then matched by $750,000in state funds in 1995. Through the partnership, Florida Hospital and UCF have jointly provided funds for 10 years to support oncology research in the community. To date, funds have been awarded to 65 research projects. The projects range from the study of how micro particles released from cancer cells affect blood clotting to the evaluation of patients’ responses to therapy for fatigue associated with breast cancer.
“The endowment has been instrumental in ‘kick-starting’ many cancer research projects at Florida Hospital and UCF,” said John Francis, Ph.D., director of the Florida Hospital Institute of Translational Research. “The major benefit is that the endowment provides funding to test an idea.”
Individual researchers from Florida Hospital or UCF can apply for grants up to $20,000. Researchers who conduct joint projects between the two organizations can receive grants of up to $45,000 in order to encourage the collaboration of researchers from different backgrounds and professions.
“The collaboration between UCF and one of the largest healthcare systems in the country is allowing us to further cancer research,” said Diane Andrews, Ph.D., RN, chairman of the Florida Hospital/UCF Endowment Oversight Committee. “By encouraging cancer research within our community, we hope we can be a part of finding cure.”
About Florida Hospital
Opened in 1908, Florida Hospital is one of the largest not-for-profit hospitals in the country, caring for more than a million patients per year – that’s more than any other hospital in the country, according to the American Hospital Association. The nearly 1,900- bed system, comprised of seven hospitals and 16 Centra Care walk-in medical centers, has been recognized by U.S. News & World Report as one of the best hospitals in the country for the past nine years.