The Pat Summitt Clinic at The University of Tennessee Medical Center officially opened in January 2017, just seven months after the passing of Pat Summitt on June 28, 2016, from early onset dementia.

 

In January 2015, with Summitt in attendance, UT Medical Center and the Pat Summitt Foundation announced a strategic partnership to create the 7,500-square-foot-clinic, which would be designed to offer soothing care for Alzheimer’s disease patients down to the details, including seamless transitions of color to reduce confusion; custom lighting; muting of sound; intentional palettes of comfort; inspirational images of Summitt; and collaborative spaces for medical staff, family members and patients.

 

“It is our hope that by creating this clinic at The University of Tennessee Medical Center, everyone will have access to resources that will help them as they walk through this difficult journey,” Summitt said in 2015.

 

Led by Dr. Roberto Fernandez, the clinic specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of cognitive disorders, including Alzheimer’s disease; frontotemporal dementia; vascular dementia; dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB); and primary progressive aphasia (PPA). Services include imaging; caregiver training and support services; community outreach and education; clinical research; and clinical trials.

 

Fernandez, who is the clinic’s medical director, assembled a multidisciplinary team of neurologists; nurse practitioner; clinical neuropsychologists; speech-language pathologists; nurse coordinators; licensed social workers; and cognitive evaluation specialists.

 

“I am humbled and honored to be named medical director of the Pat Summitt Alzheimer’s clinic,” Fernandez said after he was selected by UT Medical Center in 2016 to lead the clinic. “Over the past several months, I’ve learned much about Coach Summitt’s extraordinary accomplishments and most importantly, her incredible human qualities. Her courageous fight against Alzheimer’s disease is one that is taken on by millions of patients around the world. Thanks to Coach Summitt’s vision and generosity, the tireless work of so many at UT Medical Center and the Pat Summitt Foundation, and the support of countless donors, we will now be able to expand access to high-quality care and provide compassionate support to patients and caregivers across the region, all while advancing Alzheimer’s research with the ultimate goal of finding a cure.”

 

To contact The Pat Summitt Clinic at The University of Tennessee Medical Center, call 865-305-CARE (2273).

Roberto Fernandez, MD, MPH, PhD
Medical Director

“It is our hope that by creating this clinic at The University of Tennessee Medical Center, everyone will have access to resources that will help them as they walk through this difficult journey.”