Bringing Hope Close to Home


Corporate Culture | By Edward A. Jones –

New Houston Methodist initiative expands access to clinical trials for Fort Bend residents.


Patients with life-threatening illnesses face an uncertain future when conventional therapies don’t work. The last threads of hope can slip away if modern medicine doesn’t seem to have an answer.

Clinical trials allow physicians and scientists to research the effectiveness of new medicines and innovative technologies and can provide hope and sometimes a cure for patients. But access to these experimental therapies is typically limited to a small number of patients at research hospitals.

The Houston Methodist Research Institute is working to change that paradigm in Fort Bend and surrounding areas. Scientific knowledge and understanding are advancing at a rapid pace, and with that comes a wealth of new medical discoveries that can deliver significant benefits to patients.

Today, Houston Methodist Sugar Land is conducting about two dozen clinical trials in the areas of oncology and cardiology. And, they are working diligently to expand that number by involving more physicians and encouraging greater participation.

No other medical institution in Fort Bend can offer the breadth of access to clinical trials that Houston Methodist can. There are more than 1,200 trials under way in the Texas Medical Center, and more than 500 have progressed to active therapeutic studies that can bring hope – and possibly a cure – to patients. These trials span a wide range of disease, including cancer, heart and liver failure, stroke, Alzheimer’s, neurological conditions, infections and much more. As the program conti-nues to grow in Fort Bend, local patients will have the opportunity to participate and benefit from these trials.

The Houston Methodist Research Institute’s mission is to expand access to the clinical trials that are progressing at the main campus in the Texas Medical Center, making it easier and more convenient for patients at Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital to participate.

A Tradition of Leading Medicine

Houston Methodist Hospital has a long history of medical innovation. The legacy of medical firsts began with the pioneering work of Dr. Michael DeBakey and continues to this day. The formation of The Houston Methodist Research Institute in 2004 allowed Methodist to focus efforts on developing treatments with ready applicability to human disease.

Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital has also been a pioneer, bringing the most complex and sophisticated treatments and procedures close to home, including many that previously were only available at Houston Methodist in the Texas Medical Center.  By bridging the work under way at The Houston Methodist Research Institute with the outstanding physicians at Houston Methodist Sugar Land, Methodist is expanding outreach – offering the latest and most promising clinical trials to patients while allowing them to stay close to home for treatment.

Improving Access in Fort Bend

Two years ago, the Cockrell Center for Advanced Therapeutics at Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital opened to coordinate early phase clinical trials in Fort Bend. It was the first such center in the Methodist system, the beginning of the “hub and spoke” strategy of centralized academic and laboratory research and open and accessible trials.

To learn more about research and clinical trials offered in Sugar Land, visit houstonmethodist.org/clinicaltrials or call 713.441.3250.