On this page, BHC shares its journey to the present day as a center of excellence and its strategic purpose. Subsequent pages share how that purpose is carried out through dedicated volunteers, staff, and a unique business model.
The Bateman Horne Center (BHC) journey started at the turn of the 21st century with a committed vision to advance the diagnosis and treatment of myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS), fibromyalgia (FM), and other related comorbidities.
While Dr. Bateman was completing her medical studies at Johns Hopkins in the late 1980s, her sister, Shauna Bateman Horne, had become very sick and was unable to get an accurate diagnosis or treatment for her illness. With a determined commitment to help her sister that extended beyond a medical residency at the University of Utah, Dr. Bateman’s finally diagnosed her with ME/CFS.
Fatigue Consultation Clinic (FCC)
Little was known about the disease in the 1990s and Dr. Bateman began taking patients that had similar illness presentation in her internal medicine practice. By 2000, Dr. Bateman established her own practice which became the Fatigue Consultation Clinic (FCC) and dedicated her professional skills to the diagnosis and treatment of ME/CFS and FM.
Shauna Bateman Horne died in 2001 from complications of non-Hodgkin lymphoma at the ages of 51. Over a decade later in 2012, the National Cancer Institute showed that ME/CFS patients are at increased risk of developing certain cancers including non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
Dr. Bateman’s practice developed a reputation for well-defined ME/CFS and FM patients that led to opportunities for clinical trial participation. By 2014, FCC had supervised or engaged in more than 40 clinical trials and multi-site studies with co-investigators including the CDC, Columbia U, Harvard U, Stanford U, University of Miami, U of Nevada-Reno, CFS Centers in New York City, New Jersey, and North Carolina.
Dr. Bateman’s expertise has been in constant demand locally, nationally, and internationally as she has lectured and served in many capacities with organizations including Solve ME/CFS Initiative, IACFSME, FibroCollaborative, CFS Advisory Committee to the Secretary of Health and Human Services, Chronic Fatigue Initiative and advisory collaborations with the CDC, FDA, NIH, and the Institute of Medicine (National Academy of Medicine) Committee on educational and research projects.
OFFER (Organization for Fatigue and Fibromyalgia Education and Research)
In 2001, a dedicated group of volunteer patients and advocates worked with Dr. Bateman to create OFFER, a small 501(c)3 non-profit devoted to educating the public and healthcare providers about research and treatment advances for ME/CFS and FM.
OFFER implemented its mission through educational conferences for medical providers, patients, and the public, facilitated support groups, and began building a publication and video resource library that would be free to access for everyone.
Bateman Horne Center (BHC)
The OFFER volunteer board conceived the idea of creating a center of excellence as early as 2011 and was officially established in March 2015 with the merger of Dr. Bateman’s clinic practice, FCC, and OFFER. The newly formed 501(c)3 nonprofit organization was called the Bateman Horne Center of Excellence in honor of Dr. Bateman’s sister. The center would be dedicated to the research, clinical care, and provider/patient education to mainstream awareness of ME/CFS and FM among the medical and research communities and helping support a compromised patient population.
The timing of the merger coincided with the IOM (Institute of Medicine, now the National Academy of Medicine) report in the spring of 2015 that officially mapped out healthcare provider guidance for the diagnostic criteria for ME/CFS. Full report here
A one-time foundational gift of 1 million dollars in 2016 from a close and devoted supporter of Dr. Bateman assured the successful launch of the new center of excellence. The funds enabled infrastructure upgrades in facility, equipment, and talent (including a new physician) as well as the expansion of educational, development, and communications programs while establishing a framework of governance and oversight for the board of directors.
A Center of Excellence
In May of 2016, the Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Advisory Committee reporting to the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services, recommended the establishment of ME/CFS Centers of Excellence (COE). Although the proposed funding never occurred, the concept guidance adopted by BHC included the following criteria:
- Includes clinical and research components as well as outreach, recruitment (clinicians, researchers and patients), social services, patient education, and medical professional education.
- Assembles a designated multi-specialty team to provide clinical care to support clinical research of ME/CFS patients.
- Housed in or near academic centers with medical education, research, and patient treatment facilities capable of providing healthcare, professional and community education and training, and access to additional academic disciplines as needed.
- Develop the capacity to provide telemedicine services to patients who, due to the disability imposed by ME/CFS, are unable to travel to a COE.
- Develop the capacity to support community-based physicians at a distance from the COE, with both consultative and educational support via telemedicine or any other viable methods, to facilitate the delivery of healthcare to patients within the patients’ community.
BHC meets each of the recommended criteria and has established itself as a distinguished institution with the expertise for the care and treatment of ME/CFS, FM, and related comorbidities. BHC is an asset to the healthcare community and to informed healthcare consumers. BHC achieves improved outcomes through innovation, technology, skilled providers, and efficient administration.
Strategic Value Proposition
The Bateman Horne Center (BHC) is a non-profit 501(c)3 Center of Excellence improving lives impacted by myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS), fibromyalgia (FM), post-viral syndromes, and related comorbidities.
The BHC Value Proposition addresses the real-world of ME/CFS, FM, and post-viral limitations including narrow options for patients to access quality clinical care, underfunding of research initiatives, and need for informed educational resources for patients and healthcare providers.
Global End Goal:
People with ME/CFS, FM, post-viral syndromes, and related comorbidities live improved lives through universal access to evidence-informed, precision medicine.
We empower patients, advance research, and improve clinical care for all those impacted by ME/CFS, FM, post-viral syndromes, and related comorbidities.
We envision a world where patients with ME/CFS, FM, post-viral syndromes, and related comorbidities are readily diagnosed, effectively treated, and widely met with empathy and understanding.
The Board of Directors are stewards of the efforts and talents of those who have built this organization and are responsible to represent the needs and values of the BHC Community defined as patients and their advocates, healthcare providers, researchers, and community educators and volunteers.
A Word About the BHC Logo and Mascot
The birds in flight in the BHC logo represents the collective effort of BHC’s Community bringing hope and newfound freedoms and quality of life.
Dr. Bateman adopted the turtle as the BHC mascot to remind us that progress with these illnesses requires patience, determination, and pacing to achieve results. The turtle is a symbol of longevity, has great strength, and can carry heavy loads.