In fulfilling its vision to make a significant contribution to humanity by improving global health as part of its commitment to corporate responsibility, the Eli Lilly and Company Foundation long has been a significant supporter of Wishard. Today, the Wishard Foundation announces Eli Lilly and Company Foundation has provided $1 million for the future of the health system known as Wishard — in the Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Hospital and Eskenazi Health campus, opening in 2014.
"We are proud to support the project to build the Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Hospital and Eskenazi Health campus in downtown Indianapolis as the future of an organization we have always valued for its positive impact on the health of our community," said John Lechleiter, Ph.D., President, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Lilly. "The Eli Lilly and Company Foundation is dedicated to improving the lives of people who lack the resources to obtain quality health care, and we can advance this goal in immeasurable ways through our support of Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Hospital and Eskenazi Health."
Wishard Health Services will name the main lobby of the new hospital in recognition of the gift. The $1 million gift is among the largest contributions the Wishard Foundation has received for the new hospital. On June 22, Wishard Foundation announced a $40 million gift from Indianapolis’s Sidney and Lois Eskenazi, in honor of whom Wishard will name the new hospital and health system.
"We are excited and very grateful to receive this generous gift from the Eli Lilly and Company Foundation," said Ernest Vargo II, CFRE, President and CEO of Wishard Foundation. "In addition to its broad and significant contributions to the Indianapolis community and health care around the world, Lilly has long been a supporter of Wishard. Its support for the new hospital project will contribute positively to the health and quality of life of our community."
The unrestricted gift will contribute toward the $754 million cost of the hospital project and help Wishard continue to devote its resources to care in the present as well as the future as Eskenazi Health. The capital campaign for Eskenazi Health has now raised more than $55 million.
Since Lilly established the Lilly Foundation in 1968, it has awarded grants for philanthropic initiatives aligned with the company's corporate responsibility priorities. The foundation has specifically dedicated itself to improving the lives of people who lack the resources to obtain quality health care and strengthening public education in the United States.
The project to construct the Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Hospital and Eskenazi Health campus is creating 4,400 jobs and will transform the landscape of health care in Indianapolis.
Marion County voters approved construction of new facilities for Wishard in the Nov. 3, 2009 election, with 85 percent support for the measure, and Wishard began work immediately. Wishard plans to complete the new facilities at the end of 2013 and be fully operational in 2014.
The Wishard Foundation is raising philanthropic support for the project in addition to current Wishard programs. To learn more about the Foundation, please visit www.WishardFoundation.org. For more information about the construction project, visit www.EskenaziHealth.org.
CONTACT: Todd Harper