Grady’s Ponce Center celebrates 25th anniversary
On Nov. 30, government, business and medical leaders came together to celebrate 25 years of treating patients and conducting research at Grady Health System’s Ponce de Leon Center.
Known as the Ponce Center, the facility houses one of the nation’s largest and most comprehensive programs for the treatment of advanced HIV and AIDS and is part of the Emory Center for AIDS Research. Thursday’s event also recognized the Fulton County Commission, DeKalb County Commission and others who have recently committed funding towards a planned $23 million renovation and expansion.
“When this facility opened nearly 25 years ago, no one knew what the future would hold. What was clear was that there were people who needed compassionate medical care and a commitment to identifying ways for them to live with what was then a new disease,” said John Haupert, chief executive officer of the Grady Health System, in a press release. “While we should all be proud of the progress we have made, AIDS remains a growing epidemic, especially here in Atlanta, which makes the modernization of this facility even more important.”
Grady announced its renovation plans for the Ponce Center earlier this year as part of a capital campaign that will also fund the construction of a new Center for Advanced Surgical Services. Since that time, both the Fulton County Commission and DeKalb County Commission voted unanimously to provide half of the funding needed to complete both projects. Gilead Sciences, Inc., a longtime partner of Grady with regard to HIV and AIDS, made the lead corporate gift towards the Ponce Center project.
“Our company is committed to providing innovative solutions to help those living with HIV and AIDS and to ultimately finding a cure,” said Dr. Trevor Hawkins, senior director of medical affairs, Gilead Sciences. “The work being done at facilities like the Ponce Center is critical not only to the treatment of current patients but also to stemming the epidemic. We look forward to seeing what we can achieve through our continued partnership.”
The program closed with an announcement by Dr. Carlos del Rio, co-director of the Emory Center for AIDS Research, that the Emory Medical Care Foundation would
Government, business and medical leaders celebrated the 25th anniversary of Grady Health System’s Ponce de Leon Center on Nov. 30. (Courtesy photo)