On Oct. 1, Brigham and Women’s Hospital will elevate its Division of Urology into a Department of Urology, marking the establishment of the institution’s first new clinical and academic department in a decade.
Adam S. Kibel, MD — current chief of the division, the DiNovi Family Distinguished Chair in Urology at the Brigham and the Elliott Carr Cutler Professor of Surgery at Harvard Medical School — will serve as inaugural chair of the new department. In this role, he will lead all clinical, research and teaching efforts for Urology across the Brigham family, including Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Brigham and Women’s Faulkner Hospital.
Historically at the Brigham, urology has been a subspecialty within the Department of Surgery. Urology has undergone significant expansion and innovation in the last 50 years, and this transition will bring Brigham urologic care in line with the current landscape of the field, hospital leaders explained in a message to all staff.
“By evolving the Division of Urology into a Department of Urology, we will create broader and more integrated clinical programs, enhance access to urologic care within our local communities and improve our patients’ experience by creating multidisciplinary centers of excellence tailored to their needs,” wrote Robert S.D. Higgins, MD, MSHA, president of the Brigham and executive vice president at Mass General Brigham (MGB), and Giles W.L. Boland, MD, president of the Brigham and Women’s Physicians Organization and executive vice president at MGB.
This transition reflects another notable trend in the field: the growing importance, quality and value of outpatient and community-based care.
“The majority of procedures are no longer performed in large tertiary care centers but in the clinic or in ambulatory care centers, and there is increased use of imaged-guided and medical therapies for the management of urologic disease,” Kibel said. “Even at our institution, which manages the most complex urologic problems, most of the growth has been at our community-based locations, such as Faulkner and Foxborough.”
In addition to supporting the growth of clinical operations, the transition to a department will help advance Urology’s research infrastructure, including its translational research laboratory and robust clinical trials program. With an already acclaimed residency program, which is combined with the Massachusetts General Hospital, Kibel and his team will work to develop additional Urology fellowships in subspecialty areas and integrate programs across MGB.
“Over the past decade, our faculty, trainees and staff have worked together to grow in every facet of care, research and academic medicine,” Kibel said. “I’m confident that this evolution from division to department is only the beginning, and we will continue to have a growing impact on the lives of our patients and all those we serve.”