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Texas Medical Center Leaders Reflect on Houston Health Care in 2020 and Beyond

Published Dec 16, 2020 by Lou Ann Duvall

Texas Medical Center

Texas Medical Center President and CEO William "Bill" McKeon delivered the keynote presentation at the Greater Houston Partnership's State of the Texas Medical Center on December 10. McKeon and other TMC leaders talked about how the world's largest medical city has battled COVID-19 and continues to build on the health care and life sciences brainpower. 

"As we have seen throughout this COVID pandemic, many states and cities have had a really difficult time understanding this data in real time," said McKeon. "We have heard about significant delays. So what was powerful about the Texas Medical Center was that we have been delivering that data in real time every day so that we always know how difficult things are getting, or what our run on inventory, how many patients we have or how full our ICU’s are.”

Dr. Marc Boom, President and Chief Executive Officer of Houston Methodist Hospital, echoed how crucial that information was. 

“One thing we recognized early on was a need to standardized data reporting and the value of understanding on the front lines what’s going on with this pandemic.”

Boom and other TMC leaders said their united and connected group has been essential to Houston’s ability to effectively manage through these difficult days.

"We have learned a lot about the value of communications, collaboration and cooperation here in the TMC," said Dr. Eric Boerwinkle, Dean of UTHealth’s School of Public Health. ”We need to make sure that infrastructure and relationships that we have built really are re-honed and targeted to tackle the common diseases that plague our public’s health, including heart disease, cancer, stroke and mental health. If we can do what we do for those conditions what we have done for COVID-19 by communicating, by collaborating, by bringing the best and the brightest together, we will be able to move the dial on those important conditions through new discoveries, new therapies and, most importantly, how to prevent them from ever occurring in the first place.”

TMC continues to break new ground and the TMC Innovation Institute is a foundational piece helping to shape the future of life sciences by uniting leading innovators in academia, science and medicine. Since its debut in 2014, more than 100 companies have been housed, or are currently working out of, TMC Innovation and have raised over $240 million in funding. 

TMC3 will break ground soon as a world-class, life science complex that unites the best minds in medicine across 37 acres, with shared and proprietary research centers, multi-disciplinary laboratories, health care institutions, a hotel and conference center, retail, and a unique double-helix green space – totaling almost 3.7 million square feet of developed property.

“The opportunity here is beyond extraordinary,” said David Manfredi, CEO and Founding Principal of Elkus Manfredi, architect for TMC3. “It’s an opportunity for collaboration in innovation across life science, medical device and bio medicine platforms and at great scale. The opportunity is to bring people together that don’t normally come together – to build an ecosystem that is diverse and broad and that is open is really extraordinary and it’s because of the assets that are already here.” 

The State of TMC was broadcast live December 10 from the Avenida Houston Virtual Studio inside the George R. Brown Convention Center. 

The Texas Medical Center is internationally renowned as home to the brightest minds in medicine, who every day pursue the very best in research, treatments and education. The 61 member institutions of the TMC are consistently recognized by U.S. News and World Report as some of the best hospitals and universities in the nation.

Learn more about Houston's life sciences industry. See the latest COVID-19 data from TMC on our Reopening Houston Safely dashboard.

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