Nevada System of Higher Education
Health Sciences System Newsletter 
August 2013
The Health Sciences System (HSS) was established by the Nevada System of Higher Education (NSHE) Board of Regents in 2006. Its purpose is to address Nevada's community health issues through a system-wide effort to integrate and expand the education of health professionals and to foster collaborative research in health and health care.  Through collaboration among the NSHE institutions and a broad range of external partners, the HSS intends to be a catalyst for improvement in the health and wellness of Nevada.  Visit us at:
TMCC Foundation receives major gift from the Redfield Foundation to fund new Health Science Center


Gerald Smith, Director of the Nell J. Redfield Foundation, speaks at a news conference to announce a $2 million gift to TMCC for a health science center, pictured in renderings.  




The Truckee Meadows Community College Foundation recently announced a $2 million gift from the Nell J. Redfield Foundation kicking-off the capital campaign for a new TMCC Health Science Center representing a significant investment in Nevada's health care industry.


"The TMCC Health Science Center will be the symbol of excellence the community has come to expect from TMCC programs, but more importantly it will be the home of the College's flagship nursing program and the students who have entrusted us with their educational choice," said Dr. Maria Sheehan, president of Truckee Meadows Community College.


To meet Nevada's growing demand for highly trained and qualified nurses, the TMCC Health Science Center will provide needed space to accommodate the state's leading nursing program's future development. The center will expand the program with additional career options, and make a significant addition with consolidated programs and improvements to the joint TMCC and University of Nevada, Reno Redfield Campus. 


"Truckee Meadows Community College has demonstrated excellence, creativity and leadership with the expansion plans at the Redfield Campus to meet the growing needs of health care in our state," said Gerald Smith, director of the Redfield Foundation. "This gift will make a significant contribution to the continued development of the College's flagship program."     


Responding to changing industry trends, TMCC is investing in new instructional space that is specifically designed to accommodate the increasing demand. When complete, the $10 million state-of-the-art project will include construction of the 16,000-square-foot Health Science Center and renovations to the existing 25,000-square-foot High Tech Center. Additions to the program include a 4,200-square-foot high-tech nursing lab with four technologically advanced instructional simulation rooms, two debrief rooms for faculty-student review, two 40-person classrooms, faculty offices, a dedicated lab storage area and student dress/locker room.


Studies show that Nevada expects a 23 percent deficit in the number of available registered nurses by 2015, and a 28 percent deficit by 2020. The "graying" or aging of the existing nursing workforce further exacerbates the shortage thus the need for new and creative programs.


Based on national examination scores, TMCC's nursing program continues to be the state's leading program with 128 new freshman nurses enrolling each year. To address the growing need for a baccalaureate program, TMCC has partnered with Nevada's four-year colleges and university-University of Nevada, Reno, Nevada State College and Great Basin College-to offer a "2 + 2" enrollment program for TMCC graduates. The College's graduates who complete their two-year degree will be eligible to take the national exam, become RNs and begin to work while completing the remaining two years of coursework to earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing courses from UNR, NSC or GBC.





Biotech start-up DxDiscovery launched by School of Medicine researchers

The work of two University of Nevada School of Medicine researchers has led to the launch of a new Nevada biotechnology corporation based on the University of Nevada, Reno campus. DxDiscovery, Inc. has begun operations at the University's Applied Research Facility, marking the start of what could be a new dimension of commercial and economic development for Nevada.

The core focus of DxDiscovery is the development of medical diagnostics tests for infectious disease using highly optimized monoclonal antibodies. 

Tom Kozel, professor of microbiology and co-founder and CEO of the new company, and David AuCoin, co-founder and professor of microbiology, are both School of Medicine faculty members who have each successfully commercialized some of their research, already in use around the world.

Kozel and AuCoin, are excited to create jobs and increase economic benefits to Nevada by establishing a company on campus.

"Having a top-tier biotechnology company in Nevada will help eliminate the current 'brain drain' - students leaving Nevada to work for other companies - and will further the economic growth of Nevada," Kozel said.

Kozel and AuCoin are beginning work to develop a biomarker for early diagnosis of invasive candidiasis, the fourth most common bloodstream infection among hospitalized patients in the United States. The infection carries with it a high mortality rate. DxDiscovery just received a $600,000 grant from the National Institutes of Health's Small Business Technology Transfer program to further the candidiasis research.

"This is a good example of leveraging the knowledge, resources and talent of the University for the advancement of Nevada business," Marc Johnson, president of the University of Nevada, Reno, said. "We will continue to foster a creative research environment where the pursuit of inquiry and discovery provide an opportunity for world-improving knowledge."


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Telethon to support children's clinics, NSC/Dr. Joel and Carol Bower School-Based Health Center, Sept. 10-12
The Dr. Joel and Carol Bower School-Based Health Center (SBHC) has been selected by 8 News NOW to be one of the three local children's clinics to benefit from the Dial 4 A Smile telethon scheduled for Sept. 10 through 12 during its 4pm to 6pm newscast. 

Funds raised during the three-day event will support clinics that provide medical and dental care to un-insured and under-insured children in the valley including the SBHC, The Children's Free Clinic of Southern Nevada and Future Smiles.

Located in Henderson on the Basic High School campus, the SBHC was founded in 2004 through a Nevada State College (NSC) School of Nursing and Clark County School District partnership. The center provides healthcare to low income and underserved children. School children ages 4-19 are able to visit the SBHC for primary and acute care, management of chronic illnesses, asthma management, wellness counseling, treatment of injuries, routine physical examinations, and pre-participation sports physicals. Patients are seen from Basic High School, surrounding Henderson schools as well as schools in Las Vegas. Uninsured and underinsured children without pediatric providers are also referred to the center for asthma care.


Did you know: 
The Nevada System of Higher Education has 150 distinct Health Sciences programs throughout eight institutions with an estimated total of 18,000 enrolled students.
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