WASHINGTON — MedStar Georgetown University Hospital announced today a historic $50 million philanthropic gift from entrepreneur, venture capital investor and philanthropist Grant Verstandig, and the Verstandig Family Foundation, to support the new Medical/Surgical Pavilion currently under construction at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital.
This transformational gift from Mr. Verstandig is one of the largest philanthropic gifts ever made to health care in the Washington, D.C., region, and will support one of the most significant healthcare projects to take place in the region. Upon its completion and in recognition of this generous gift, the new pavilion will be named in honor of Mr. Verstandig.
“We are incredibly grateful to Grant Verstandig for his generous support of MedStar Health and in particular, for making this naming gift to the MedStar Georgetown University Hospital Medical/Surgical Pavilion,” said Kenneth A. Samet, President and Chief Executive Officer of MedStar Health. “Grant is a true visionary, and his commitment to the health and well-being of patients in our region is highly impactful. I believe Grant’s leadership gift will inspire others to join him in partnering with us, as we build a world-class facility to support the world-class care we provide.”
Mr. Verstandig developed a deep personal commitment to advancing healthcare systems of all kinds after his own experience as a patient with a knee injury that required 16 surgeries, and from observing numerous care experiences of family members and close friends. These care experiences ignited a determination to help make health care easier and more accessible for everyone, and to empower people to take control of their health and well-being. Core to his approach is advancing cutting-edge, transformative health care and new technologies that support it, including using large data sets, analytics and Artificial Intelligence (AI) to create novel methods for characterizing and curing disease.
“I believe in the positive and profound impact that innovation and technology can have on medical facilities and treatments, and I am proud to support the development of MedStar Georgetown University Hospital’s world-class Medical/Surgical Pavilion that will impact people for generations to come,” said Mr. Verstandig. “With its state-of-the-art capabilities, the Medical/Surgical Pavilion will completely transform healthcare options in the region, bringing unparalleled patient care and advanced technology to the area. I am pleased to offer my gratitude by supporting this campaign and investing through philanthropy in the incredible work being done by the amazing care teams at MedStar Georgetown.”
Slated to open in 2023, the Medical/Surgical Pavilion will accelerate the region’s healthcare capabilities and usher in an even stronger future of providing excellent clinical and patient care. As the medical education and clinical partner of Georgetown University, MedStar Health has one of the largest Graduate Medical Education (GME) programs in the country. The Medical/ Surgical Pavilion will advance the work of the partnership in critical areas of research and support an even greater commitment to medical education. The new facility will also be a place that serves to reinforce the spirit of cura personalis, care of the whole person, which complements Mr. Verstandig’s passion of caring for a patient’s mental-spiritual well-being, in addition to their physical health.
The Medical/Surgical Pavilion will foster growth and training in the specialty services for complex diseases, including oncology, gastroenterology, neurology and neurosurgery, orthopaedics, and transplant. The Pavilion will also be comprised of 477,213 square feet, featuring 156 private patient rooms; a rooftop helipad with direct access to 31 state-of-the-art Operating Rooms; and 32 exam rooms in a modernized Emergency Department.
The most recent contributions by the Verstandig Family Foundation to MedStar Health build on their enduring commitment to the greater Baltimore-Washington community.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, the Foundation generously donated a total of $750,000 to MedStar Health in support of the procurement and delivery of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for care teams, as well as enhancing the MedStar Health Mobile Health Center, which traveled the Baltimore-Washington area to provide critical COVID-19 vaccine awareness and distribution.
An accomplished entrepreneur, investor and technology advisor, Verstandig has founded and scaled numerous businesses, including Rally Health, a consumer-centric digital health company acquired by UnitedHealth Group; Epirus, an AI-enabled power management company focused on directed energy defense applications; and Zephyr AI, an AI platform developing novel methods to characterize and cure disease. He is a Founding Partner of Red Cell Partners, an investment and incubation platform that backs, builds and scales transformative, technology-led businesses in health care and defense.
A respected technologist as well as practitioner, Verstandig advises numerous public and civic institutions, including the National Security Agency (NSA), where he serves as senior advisor on advanced analytics, technology and AI. From 2017 to 2021, Verstandig served as Chief Digital Officer of UnitedHealth Group and now serves as Senior Advisor to the Chief Executive Officer. In 2013, he was awarded Forbes “30 Under 30,” and in 2018, Business Insider “30 Under 40” in the healthcare category.
He has backed many technology-led companies from their earliest stages, including NexImmune (NEXI), where he serves on the board. He also serves on the boards of the Greater Washington Partnership, the International Spy Museum and the Third Option Foundation, which seeks to heal, help and honor members of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)’s Special Operations community and their families.
“Finalizing this transformational gift with Grant has allowed me to see how deeply he cares about our region; about giving back; and about advancing health care from both a care and caring standpoint,” commented Samet. “Grant and the Verstandig Family Foundation are making a difference for generations to come.”