Brown’s Impact on Health and Medicine in Rhode Island

Research Helping Patients

Brown researchers and physician scientists are making discoveries that transform care for Rhode Island patients in real ways.

Attracting funding to Rhode Island for translating research into therapies and treatments:

$97.1 million in research awards

$97.1 million in external research awards received by the School of Public Health in FY21

$84.1 million in research awards

$84.1 million in external research awards received by the Division of Biology and Medicine in FY21, and the Brown University

$299.7 million in research grants

$299.7 million in external research grants across all divisions received by Brown in FY21

$228.2 million spent on research

$228.2 million spent on research across all divisions at Brown in FY21, an increase of 19% from FY18

Examples of Brown research innovations improving RI patient care:

The Center for Alzheimer’s Disease Research fosters research from the molecular level through the development of drugs to prevent and treat Alzheimer’s. An initiative of the Carney Institute for Brain Science, the center offers residents of southern New England the opportunity to participate in clinical trials aimed at better understanding and treating Alzheimer’s and dementia.

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Brown faculty in urology started a first-of-its-kind RI Bladder Cancer Registry in 2021, with support from the Rhode Island Foundation, with the goal of advancing research, promoting prevention, addressing treatment disparities and improving health outcomes for people in the state.

Patients in Rhode Island have the opportunity to enroll in leading-edge studies of new cancer treatments. For many of these patients, the clinical trials — led by investigators with the Brown University Oncology Research Group — are a last hope when all other treatment approaches have failed.

Legorreta Cancer Center at Brown brings together researchers, clinicians, and public health scientists. They are developing treatments and improving our understanding of a host of different cancers — including bladder cancer, which is more prevalent in Rhode Island (for reasons researchers are investigating).

The Buprenorphine Hotline provides 24/7 telehealth assessments for the treatment of opioid use disorder. The hotline was started by Elizabeth Samuels, M.D., a health services-trained researcher, assistant professor of emergency medicine and emergency medicine physician who serves as consulting assistant medical director for RIDOH’s Drug Overdose Prevention Program.

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Rhode Island leaders are addressing barriers to COVID-19 testing and vaccination among high-risk populations in the state. A partnership between Brown, Progreso Latino, the Rhode Island Quality Institute and others has garnered research grants totaling $1.4 million toward this effort.

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Co-created by a Brown Emergency Medicine physician, the NaloxBox is an important resource in fighting the opioid epidemic in Rhode Island. The wall-mounted kits with doses of the opioid overdose reversing medicine naloxone are now also found nationwide in state offices, libraries, universities, public housing authorities, recovery centers and other public spaces. The kits were designed by a team including Geoff Capraro, M.D., MPH, a Brown pediatric emergency physician.


The vision for bringing Brown together in collaboration with the Care New England and Lifespan health systems to create an integrated academic health system will create significant new opportunities for attracting major research grants that help transform care in Rhode Island.