Fred Havenick ICU at Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center Signals New Era in Cancer Treatment

Trustees, donors, faculty, staff and UM and Miller School leadership celebrated and dedicated the Fred Havenick Intensive Care Unit at Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center on May 8.

Leonard Abess, chairman of the UM Board of Trustees, recognized the occasion as an “exciting night for the Miller School, and especially for Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center.” Funds raised to establish the ICU were made possible, Abess said, in large part through the efforts of fellow UM Trustee Barbara Havenick, in memory of her late husband, Fred.

UM President Donna E. Shalala thanked Havenick and her family, including sons Michael, Isadore, and Alex, his wife Barbara, daughter Jennifer Bielawski and her husband Tim, daughter-in-law Alexis, and mother Florence Hecht, for their ongoing support of UM.

“I am so glad to be here tonight among so many ardent UM and Miller School supporters who have come together to celebrate the growth and advancement of one of the finest cancer facilities in the country,” President Shalala said. “I knew Fred Havenick, and I know he would have been so proud to see this day.”

Pascal J. Goldschmidt, M.D., Senior Vice President for Medical Affairs and Dean of the Miller School, noted that the new state-of-the-art ICU would not have been possible without Barbara Havenick’s leadership in motivating a group of 10 key donors to raise the $1.2 million needed to launch the project.

“The Fred Havenick ICU fits perfectly with Sylvester’s vision for the future, as we continue to develop and expand services, including programs for breast, lung, and prostate cancer, and hematological malignancies, among others,” Dean Goldschmidt said. “We are expanding efforts in cancer prevention, screening, and early diagnosis, and identifying the factors that predispose people to develop cancer in the first place. We are also expanding clinical and laboratory research facilities, and developing key core facilities—and the new intensive care unit aligns perfectly with that vision.”

Barbara Havenick, who sits on the Sylvester Board of Governors and was introduced by her good friend and chair of the Sylvester Board, Joan Scheiner, said her husband’s hospitalization inspired the ICU.

“I remember when my late husband had to be transferred to the ICU at Jackson. It was a fine facility, but the multiple trips across campus were physically and emotionally draining. I knew then and there that something had to be done. We simply had to have an ICU facility here at Sylvester,” she said.

“Joan was with me during that entire process, and without her, the ICU would not exist,” she continued. “She worked tirelessly, as so many of us have, to make this ICU a reality through Fred’s health issues and through her own personal struggle. I am eternally thankful to her and to all of you for making this dream a reality and for making treatment more convenient and accessible to future generations of patients and their families fighting this tremendous battle.”

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