Tampa General Hospital opens special COVID-19 unit

Tampa General Hospital just opened a new unit that will be devoted to treating patients suffering from COVID-19 and other infectious diseases.  It will also conduct cutting-edge research and teach infectious disease physicians. It is the first of its kind in Florida.

It is called the Taneja Family Global Emerging Diseases Institute. A special gift from the Taneja Family Foundation helped make it possible.

“It means a great deal to us to be able to give back to the Tampa Bay community and to help others. This has been a very difficult time for everyone, and we want to do our part to support Tampa General, whose clinical scientists will be conducting global research to provide answers and hope,” said Jugal Taneja on behalf of his entire family.

The Global Emerging Diseases Institute currently has just more than 30 patients being treated for COVID-19.  If need be, it can have up to 100 patients.

"We believe that going forward we will be dealing with these types of issues in the future,” said John Couris, the President and CEO of Tampa General Hospital.

The Institute is a collaboration between Tampa General Hospital and USF Health Morsani College of Medicine. Physicians from both TGH and USF Health will work in clinical care, outpatient clinics, teaching, and research.  The Institute will allow physicians to collaborate on groundbreaking research and clinical vaccine trials.

“Tampa General has been a longstanding leader in diagnosing and treating infectious diseases, so this new facility is a great addition to our program that allows us to continue to meet the immediate challenge of COVID-19 and ensure that we have the capacity to deliver world-class care for every patient facing this disease,” said TGH President and CEO John Couris. 

Since March, the hospital has treated more than 1,400 COVID patients.  It's produced more than 120,000 COVID tests and currently has more than 30 clinical research trials underway.

The research, education, and ambulatory care components of the institute are still in the works, and will be developed more throughout 2021. TGH says this couldn't be possible without a gift from the Taneja Family Foundation, which is investing in the institution after seeing the need for something like this in our community.

“Tampa General Hospital and USF Health have created an environment where we can teach infectious disease physicians on the latest and most innovative processes, clinical pathways," said Couris. “What we want to become overtime is a global leader in emerging infectious diseases.”