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Kern family gives $100 million to Mayo Clinic, signaling confidence in Mayo to transform health care

October 23rd, 2013
Mayo Clinic announced today that benefactors Robert and Patricia Kern have given $100 million to Mayo, with more than $87 million dedicated to the Center for the Science of Health Care Delivery, a strategic initiative that uses quality and engineering principles to improve the way patients experience health care. To honor the Kerns, Mayo Clinic will name the center the Mayo Clinic Robert D. and Patricia E. Kern Center for the Science of Health Care Delivery.

"Our desire is that the center will establish new standards for more effective, efficient care—bringing the dream of health care for all to reality," says Mr. Kern.

In 2011, the Kerns gave Mayo Clinic $20 million to launch the Center for the Science of Health Care Delivery. The Kerns' recent gift is more than $67 million. The Kerns also have supported neuroscience research and education at Mayo Clinic.

The Kerns' gift will expand center operations, endow five scientific director positions and create online education offerings. A portion of this new gift will support concerted efforts to share the center's portfolio of scientifically proven, high-value models of care with health care providers throughout the United States.

"This changes everything," says John Noseworthy, M.D., president and CEO of Mayo Clinic. "With the Kerns' support, Mayo Clinic will re-engineer health care to improve safety, quality and value. Importantly, the Kerns' gift empowers us to share these findings with hospitals, clinics and nursing homes across the country so that patients everywhere get the high-quality, high-value care they need and deserve."

Led by Véronique L. Roger, M.D., M.P.H., a cardiologist, epidemiologist and outcomes researcher, and Mark Hayward, a senior administrator at Mayo Clinic, the Mayo Clinic Kern Center for the Science of Health Care Delivery is home to leading physicians, researchers, systems engineers, social scientists and other experts who pool collective knowledge to improve diagnosis, treatment and care of patients. For example, center experts are using telemedicine to provide care to rural stroke patients, studying how to reduce surgical site infections, and creating smart technology that synthesizes and prioritizes medical record information about the sickest patients in the hospital.

The Kerns' relationship with Mayo Clinic stretches back more than 80 years. Mr. Kern first came to Mayo Clinic in 1930 at age 5. A mechanical engineer with an affinity for innovation, Mr. Kern harnessed silicon technology to start his own business, Generac Power Systems, in 1959. Based in Waukesha, Wis., the company grew from a two-person operation run from the Kerns' garage into what eventually became one of the largest manufacturers of generators in the world.

The Mayo Clinic Kern Center for the Science of Health Care Delivery builds upon more than a century of health care delivery research at Mayo Clinic. The goal of the center is to focus and coordinate resources to analyze, evaluate and implement care delivery models that improve value for patients.

Provided by Mayo Clinic

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