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Rice unveils $100 million initiative for world health technology
Date:9/28/2007

Rice University today unveiled plans for a $100 million initiative to create an institute to develop technologies to combat pressing health problems in the developing world, such as HIV/AIDS and child mortality. The initiative was announced today during the annual meeting of the Clinton Global Initiative in New York.

Called "Rice 360: Technology Solutions for World Health," the initiative will focus on both research and education, with the goal of establishing an institute that will create, test and disseminate new technologies and educational programs that help achieve the United Nation's health-related Millennium Development Goals. These include halting and reducing the spread of HIV, slashing the mortality rate of children under 5 by two-thirds, and reducing the number of women who die from complications of pregnancy and childbirth.

"Studies estimate that nearly 10 million children under age 5 die each year in developing countries because they do not have access to appropriate health technologies -- technologies that we often take for granted here," said Rebecca Richards-Kortum, who is stepping down as Bioengineering Department Chair at the end of the academic year to spearhead the Rice 360 initiative. "Rices strong commitment to its undergraduates is one of our unique strengths. Rice 360 will capitalize on this commitment by blending engineering, education, and service in a way that ignites students' imaginations to change their lives and the lives of the world's most needy patients."

Rice 360 is designed to tap students' and faculty members' creativity, and their desire to make a difference, serve others and save lives. It builds on Rice's successful Beyond Traditional Borders initiative (BTB) in which students learn about global health issues and design technologies in response to problems doctors face in the developing world. BTB is supported by a grant to Rice from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute's Undergraduate Science Ed
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Contact: David Ruth
druth@rice.edu
713-348-6327
Rice University
Source:Eurekalert

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