RIT opens Clinical Health Sciences Center

Facility includes the Rochester Regional Health Family Medicine practice




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Rochester Institute of Technology held a grand-opening ceremony today for the Clinical Health Sciences Center in the College of Health Sciences and Technology.

The new center is home to the Wegmans School of Health and Nutrition and programs in behavioral health, diagnostic medical sonography (ultrasound) and physician assistant. Rochester Regional Health will also open a physician office in the 45,000-square-foot facility on Oct. 19.

“The new center is a concrete example of RIT’s ongoing commitment to partnering with Rochester Regional Health in order to enhance the health status of this region,” said RIT President Bill Destler. “It moves the RIT & Rochester Regional Health Alliance forward in its goal to impact the future of health care. Under one roof, we will have state-of-the art lecture rooms, simulation space and a family medicine practice that will provide hands-on experiences for students and opportunities for faculty.”

The Rochester Regional Health Family Medicine practice is the first time Rochester Regional has established a physician’s office on a college campus. The practice will provide primary care and same-day scheduling for RIT faculty, staff and dependents, and community members. It will also house a laboratory blood-draw station. The RIT Student Health Center will remain the primary care facility for undergraduate and graduate students.

“We are proud to have RIT—one of this country’s foremost educational institutions—as a partner,” said Rochester Regional Health President and CEO Dr. Eric Bieber “Together, we are educating and training the health care professionals of the future and bringing much needed health care services to this community.”

The center will enhance RIT’s ability to provide quality health care education through state-of-the art lecture rooms, practice areas and simulation space that will give students experience responding to clinical- and critical-care scenarios before their clinical rotations in the community. In addition, the diagnostic medical sonography program anticipates the arrival this fall of Carestream’s $1 million donation of state-of-the-art ultrasound equipment, as announced earlier this year.

The Wegmans School of Health and Nutrition has headquarters and dedicated space in the center. The school was formed in 2014 with the existing BS in nutrition management and a minor in exercise science. Now a BS in exercise science is pending state approval. The college has plans for an MS in health and wellness, MS in psychology of health and wellness, and a Ph.D. in applied nutrition.

The facility includes space for behavioral health research in clinical psychology and the Center for Applied Psychophysiology and Self-regulation. The college is considering the development of programs in behavioral health sciences, said Dr. Daniel Ornt, vice president and dean of the College of Health Sciences and Technology.

“The Clinical Health Sciences Center will give us the visibility to recruit students in professional programs with on-campus educational opportunities and to recruit new faculty with the added resource of on-site clinical activity and research opportunities,” Ornt said. “The center will bring a new culture of clinical practice to RIT.”

U.S. Rep. Louise Slaughter commended the efforts to improve future health-care delivery.

“I am so pleased to be part of the dedication of the Clinical Health Sciences Center, which celebrates the union between two of Rochester’s leading institutions: Rochester Institute of Technology and Rochester Regional Health. The center stands unique in its mission to serve as a space for experiential-learning,” Slaughter said. “Congratulations to all who have worked to make the Clinical Health Sciences Center a reality. You are having a direct impact on improving the future of health care and the health of us all.”

The RIT & Rochester Regional Health Alliance formed in 2008 and created the Institute of Health Sciences and Technology to encourage collaboration and educational opportunities between the organizations. The institute has three prongs: outreach, research and academics. The College of Health Sciences and Technology opened in September 2011 as RIT’s ninth college and as the Institute of Health Sciences and Technology’s academic component.

For a Q&A with Dr. Daniel Ornt, click here.

For a brief look at the Clinical Health Sciences Center's facilities, click here.

For an FAQ about the center, click here.