Fox Family Donates $1 Million to Metro Health for Robotic Surgery
Posted: December 5, 2007
Local philanthropists Tom and Mickie Fox and their family have donated $1 million to help bring state-of-the-art robotic surgery technology to Metro Health Hospital.
This leadership gift will make it possible for Metro to offer the da Vinci® Surgical System, a minimally invasive robotic technology designed to improve the way physicians approach some of the most common surgical procedures.
This commitment is unique because the Fox family has now single-handedly made it possible for robotic surgery to be available at all of the acute-care hospitals in the Grand Rapids area. Over the past two years, the Fox family has also generously supported this cutting-edge surgical advancement at Spectrum Health and St. Mary’s.
"We are incredibly pleased and grateful to the Fox family for ‘completing the circle’ through its remarkable donation to Metro Health," said Michael Faas, president and CEO of Metro Health. "The example of community-wide support set by the Fox family for improving local health care will resonate for generations to come."
Urologist Thomas Maatman, DO, who has advocated robotic surgery at Metro Health because of its many advantages for patients, agreed, noting: "Tom and Mickie Fox and the entire Fox family are to be commended for their remarkable foresight. Tom Fox is well known in our community as being a fine businessman and philanthropist. His legacy in the medical community will be that he and his family introduced 21st century advanced surgical technology to the Grand Rapids region.
Thanks to their vision, all local hospitals can offer the benefits of this surgery option to all patients – regardless of where they choose to receive medical care. The impact of their commitment is extraordinary."
Tom and Mickie Fox have four children, Janet Silverberg, Joan Turrentine, Thomas S. Fox, Jr. and Julie Fox. The family has been active in community philanthropy for many years, donating to health-care organizations, the Grand Rapids Community Foundation and other organizations that benefit West Michigan.
"When we toured the new hospital, my wife and I were very impressed with what Metro Health has done," said Tom Fox. "The new hospital is a wonderful addition to our community, and we wanted to do something meaningful that would immediately enhance it.
"My family felt that it was vitally important to make this type of advanced robotic surgery available to all the hospitals in our community. We intend that our donation will ensure that all West Michigan residents will have equal access to what we feel is a leap forward in surgical techniques."
Tom Fox helped his father, Martin, grow the Fox Jewelry Co. from a single location in downtown Grand Rapids to a chain of 48 stores throughout the Midwest. The business was sold, and Tom Fox retired in 1990. He rejoined the jewelry business in 2001 when his family purchased an existing jewelry store and launched Thomas S. Fox Diamond Jewelers on 28th Street SE in Grand Rapids.
In recognition of the generous gift, which is the second largest in the history of the Metro Health Hospital Foundation, the hospital will name its fifth level in honor of the Tom and Mickie Fox Family.
The da Vinci Surgical System combines computer and robotic technologies to create a new category of surgical treatment. By providing surgeons with enhanced capabilities, the da Vinci Surgical System makes it possible to treat a broader range of conditions using a minimally invasive approach.
The da Vinci system allows cardiac, urological, gynecological and other types of surgery to be performed with only a few tiny incisions. Surgeons can operate with better visualization, precision, dexterity and control than is possible using traditional surgical approaches.
Patients also benefit through:
- Shorter recovery times
- Significantly less pain
- Less blood loss
- Less scarring
- Faster return to normal activities
About Metro Health Hospital Foundation
The Metro Health Hospital Foundation is a charitable organization dedicated to improving the health and well being of the West Michigan community through philanthropy. The Foundation’s support of Metro Health Hospital allows individuals, organizations and businesses to contribute funds that prevent catastrophic illnesses, provide life-saving education and screenings, improve overall patient care and fund a wide variety of programs and services. Read more about the Metro Health Hospital Foundation.