HMH to partner with Foundation for Health Advancement to increase innovative research

Hackensack Meridian Health has signed an affiliate agreement with the Foundation for Health Advancement that allows the organizations to work together to support breakthroughs in biomedical research and technologies within the HMH network, the groups announced.

The Foundation for Health Advancement supports health-related research and education programs in New Jersey by providing grants to support early-stage university technologies with strong commercialization potential through its Innovation Grant Program.

The new FHA/HMH affiliation means Hackensack clinicians, researchers, and other employees will be eligible to apply for Innovation Grants awarded by FHA. They will also be able to access the Research/Community Health and Social Services Grant program, which are awarded by FHA’s affiliate, the New Jersey Health Foundation.

The New Jersey Health Foundation also provides grant funding for basic research and community health projects through its Research/Community Health and Social Service grant programs.

HMH CEO Bob Garrett said the partnership has great potential.

Bob Garrett. (File photo)

“Innovation requires an ecosystem of providers, researchers and collaborators and we are thrilled to work with this extraordinary organization to continue our commitment to transforming health care,’’ he said. “Our work with the Foundation for Health Advancement will deliver significant breakthroughs in medicine and care delivery.’’

Dr. George Heinrich, vice chair and CEO of Foundation for Health Advancement, said his group is stronger because of the connection.

“The addition of Hackensack Meridian Health adds strength to our Foundation’s entire network as we plan to work with our affiliated organizations to develop unique collaborations,” he said. “We are very excited to collaborate on the goal of advancing health-related projects and companies within the state.”

Hackensack Meridian Health supports innovation through many programs, including the Center for Discovery and Innovation, which opened in 2019 and developed many breakthroughs in the COVID pandemic. This includes the first commercial Covid test, a life-saving convalescent plasma therapy trial and genomic sequencing to track variants as the virus evolves. Additionally, the network created Bear’s Den, a panel of hospital and outside experts that identify and support transformational health care initiatives in biotech and pharma companies that will drive healthcare forward.

Dr. Ihor Sawczuk, the chief research officer and president of the Northern Region of Hackensack Meridian Health, said HMH is ready to get started.

“New Jersey has long been at the forefront of the medical and sciences industry and this collaboration furthers that legacy,” he said. “Combined, our expertise will benefit everyone in the Garden State – and beyond.”


About Hackensack Meridian Health:

Hackensack Meridian Health is a leading not-for-profit health care organization that is the largest, most comprehensive and truly integrated health care network in New Jersey, offering a complete range of medical services, innovative research and life-enhancing care.

Hackensack Meridian Health comprises 17 hospitals from Bergen to Ocean counties, which includes three academic medical centers – Hackensack University Medical Center in Hackensack, Jersey Shore University Medical Center in Neptune, JFK Medical Center in Edison; two children’s hospitals – Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital in Hackensack, K. Hovnanian Children’s Hospital in Neptune; nine community hospitals – Bayshore Medical Center in Holmdel, Mountainside Medical Center in Montclair, Ocean Medical Center in Brick, Palisades Medical Center in North Bergen, Pascack Valley Medical Center in Westwood, Raritan Bay Medical Center in Old Bridge, Raritan Bay Medical Center in Perth Amboy, Riverview Medical Center in Red Bank, and Southern Ocean Medical Center in Manahawkin; a behavioral health hospital – Carrier Clinic in Belle Mead; and two rehabilitation hospitals – JFK Johnson Rehabilitation Institute in Edison and Johnson Rehabilitation Institute in Brick.

Additionally, the network has more than 500 patient care locations throughout the state which include ambulatory care centers, surgery centers, home health services, long-term care and assisted living communities, ambulance services, lifesaving air medical transportation, fitness and wellness center, rehabilitation centers, urgent care centers and physician practice locations. Hackensack Meridian Health has more than 36,000 team members, and 7,000 physicians and is a distinguished leader in health care philanthropy, committed to the health and well-being of the communities it serves.

The network’s notable distinctions include having more top-ranked hospitals than anyone in New Jersey, as recognized by U.S. News & World Report, 2021-22. Hackensack University Medical Center is the only hospital in New Jersey with the #1 adult and children’s hospital rankings.