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Historic Four-Way Medical Affiliation Announced

Columbia University and its hospital affiliates have long been involved in groundbreaking collaborative efforts in medical advances, patient care and research. Now a new global partnership will build on this tradition.

New York-Presbyterian Hospital, the College of Physicians & Surgeons, Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City and Hallym University Medical Center in Seoul, South Korea, have entered into an affiliation agreement to begin a unique international collaboration to enhance patient care, clinical and biomedical research, and medical education and training. The affiliation grows out of an existing clinical and research relationship between Hallym and Columbia.

"Today marks an important milestone for our respective institutions, with an agreement to undertake unprecedented medical and scientific collaboration between Korea and the United States," says Herbert Pardes, president and CEO of New York-Presbyterian Hospital. The agreement is the first international medical affiliation of its kind in Korea.

The exchange of medical expertise is the centerpiece of the agreement. Physicians and scientists from Hallym will train in New York and vice versa. The medical centers will also engage in joint research and help each other better serve the Korean population here in the United States and in South Korea.

"In undertaking this international collaboration, Hallym, New York-Presbyterian, Columbia and Weill Cornell are taking significant and positive steps toward the globalization of healthcare," says Dai-Won Yoon, chair of the Ilsong Educational Foundation, Hallym's parent company. "We look forward to this opportunity for new collaborations with our partners in New York; we fully expect that our joint efforts will benefit patients in our local communities and throughout the world."

The largest private healthcare system in South Korea, Hallym University Medical Center comprises five hospitals, 4,600 physicians and 3,162 beds.

"Today's medical challenges are not isolated within national or continental borders and neither should be the research and education that is addressing these global health issues," says Gerald Fischbach, executive vice president of Columbia University Medical Center and dean of the College of Physicians & Surgeons. "Through global collaborations like this one, we have the power to bring together the greatest minds in the world to eradicate diseases, address policy issues and improve the lives of people everywhere."

"Building a medical and scientific bridge between the U.S. and Korea offers unique opportunities to enhance healthcare for diverse patient populations, and for fostering new initiatives across the spectrum of academic medicine -- including clinical trials, international medicine, national healthcare policy, outcomes research and continuing medical education," says Antonio Gotto, dean of Weill Cornell Medical College.

Kwang-Hack Lee, director of Hallym University Medical Center and vice president of medical affairs at Hallym University, says, "Our four institutions share the highest commitment to providing the best care for our patients -- as well as the best training for physicians through our residency programs for graduate medical education. Patients served by Hallym and New York-Presbyterian Hospital will receive the benefits of this collaboration in many important areas, including increased opportunities in research and ongoing development of the best clinical practices."

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Published: Feb 25, 2005
Last modified: Feb 24, 2005

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