Epic makes 'significant donation' to UW Health for nurse pipeline

Wisconsin Medicine, the philanthropic arm of UW Health and University of Wisconsin's school of medicine and public health, is launching a workforce development initiative led by a "significant donation" from Epic. 

Madison-based Wisconsin Medicine announced the initiative Oct. 4, noting that Verona, Wis.-based Epic's donation will allow for the creation and expansion of programs "to inspire, train and support the next generation of healthcare workers with a strong focus on impacting historically marginalized communities." 

A spokesperson shared the following when Becker's followed up seeking more detail on Epic's donation, including the amount: 

"We are thrilled this significant donation is enabling us to tackle the workforce shortage directly and immediately. While we cannot disclose the exact amount, this work is vital and we expect the workforce philanthropy effort to run well into the 8-figures." 

An early focus is the recruitment, training and advancement of a new generation of nurses, propelled by Epic's dollars as well as collaborations with local nonprofits and educational institutions. Wisconsin Medicine will create a three-part learning pathway, in which students can earn certified nursing assistant credentials, followed by associate degrees in nursing and bachelors of science in nursing. All participants will be employed at UW Health during the training with educational costs covered by the program. The number of students expected to participate in the initiative annually was not made clear. 

"In the Madison area alone, we have serious workforce shortages in everything from lab technicians to nurses to phlebotomists," UW Health CEO Alan Kaplan, MD, said in a news release. "But through generous philanthropic support, community partnerships and the innovative thinking Madison is known for, we can rise to this challenge that may define the next decade of healthcare." 

Originally headquartered in Madison, Epic moved its headquarters about 11 miles away to a large campus in the suburb of Verona in 2005.


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