An endowment by Ron & Sandi Simon recognized the work of Dr. Michael
Brant-Zawadzki in building a world-class neuroscience institute that serves
the entire Southern California region. The endowment chair investiture
ceremony at the Hoag Neuroscience Institute on Sept. 24 honored the donors
and the physician.
Five years ago, Dr. Brant-Zawadzki became the first executive medical
director of Hoag Neuroscience Institute. He told PNN that he started building
a center based not around individual “celebrity doctors” but
based on a systematic approach to treatment of neurological disorders
that can be executed by a team of doctors using the programmatic approach,
co-developed with physicians themselves.
Hoag now has eight endowed chairs, which is unique for a non-academic,
community hospital, said Dr. Brant-Zawadzki. Two of the chairs are at
the Hoag Neuroscience Institute. Dr. William R. Shankle was the recipient
of the first chair, which was made possible by an endowment from Judy
and Richard Voltmer and was established for the purpose of advancing studies
and treatment of memory loss and cognitive disorders.
In an interview with PNN, Dr. Brant-Zawadzki said that building the center
has been a challenging process, but his goal has always been to work closely
with his team to develop a solid strategy that can be executed by anyone
who takes on the leadership position in the future. “I do not compete
with anyone; I simply facilitate the leadership of the various segments,
like the string section and the horn section, and help promote and to
some degree conduct the orchestra,” he said.
Dr. Brant-Zawadzki told PNN he credits the programmatic approach that he
has helped to implement for the success of the center. He said each of
the institute’s eight programs focuses on a specific area, including
stroke, brain tumors, memory and cognitive disorders, neck and back pain,
addiction medicine and others, and there is a great emphasis on prevention
and an integrated, multidisciplinary team approach. “It is about
measuring outcomes, aggregating people, technology and facilities, about
a patient-centered approach with measurement of financial and health outcomes,
and a strong emphasis on prevention.”
Flynn Andrizzi, president of the Hoag Hospital Foundation, the philanthropic
arm of Hoag, said the generosity of the local community allowed Hoag to
attract top talent and build a hospital that can rival any academic center.
Dr. Robert Braithwaite, president and CEO of Hoag hospital, congratulated
Dr. Brant-Zawadzki for being awarded the endowed chair and expressed appreciation
to the Simons “for the recognition of the great importance of physician
leadership in the current development of the Hoag hospital.”