The Horace and Amy Hagedorn Fund has made an $8 million gift to Northwell Health to establish the Northwell Health Visits pilot program, as well as support the Family Nurse Practitioner program and the Hagedorn Scholars at the Hofstra Northwell School of Graduate Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies.
This gift – one of the last grants that Amy Hagedorn made during her lifetime – is one of the largest The New York Community Trust – Horace and Amy Hagedorn Fund has given to any single organization, and one of the largest leadership gifts given to Northwell Health over the last year. The Hagedorn gift is also the largest donation supporting nursing scholarships since the inception of the Hofstra Northwell School of Graduate Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies in 2015.
“The Hagedorns’ gift to create and support these programs will have a tremendous impact on the communities we serve,” said Michael J. Dowling, president and CEO of Northwell Health. “To be able to impact health care on an academic level that’s shaping our future clinical leaders to practice medicine differently and more effectively, is a tremendous opportunity for us to have. Amy Hagedorn was among our most distinguished philanthropic leaders, and we are grateful to her and her family for their generosity.”
Hofstra President Stuart Rabinowitz added, “The foundation of our partnership with Northwell is a shared commitment to increasing access to affordable, high-quality health care. This gift reflects the Hagedorns’ dedication to that mission and their deep understanding of the vital role of nurse practitioners in serving a community’s health care needs. It will change the lives of our students, and of the patients they serve.”
Northwell Health Visits is a three-year pilot home visitation program for new mothers and their infants that assesses the needs of families with newborns within a month after they leave the hospital and connects them with supportive community resources to improve their health and wellness. The uniqueness of Northwell Health Visits is that it is a universal program providing a Nurse Practitioner home visit for all new mothers and their babies that are enrolled in the program and includes the support of a community health worker to provide a “warm hand-off” to community resources. Families in the program receive visits until six months postpartum, and those with continuing needs are connected to supportive services at Northwell Health and community-based organizations.
“The partnership of Northwell Health and key community-based organizations provides a unique opportunity to effect positive social change and yield magnified results,” said Susan Hagedorn, Amy’s step-daughter. “It was Amy’s vision that the home visits program not only coach families to function at their very best, but will also be face-to-face opportunities for nurses to transform the lives of these families—now and for the generations that will follow.”
“Her own experience of parenthood coupled with a 23-year career in early childhood education solidified Amy’s belief that consistent visits at home with a trusted, trained professional promotes good parent-infant relationships that lead to emotionally and physically healthy children,” added Dr. Hagedorn, who’s a nurse practitioner and nurse educator. “She always said that by the time children reach school age, it’s too late to start helping families who have fallen behind in poverty or succumbed to other social ills. As a teacher, Amy believed in the earliest possible intervention in childhood development and empowering mothers.”
Addressing a Growing Need
To meet the increasing need for nurse practitioners to deliver community-based health care, Northwell Health and Hofstra University launched the School of Graduate Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies in March 2015. The school incorporates the diverse academic programs and infrastructure of Hofstra University, and the vast array of clinical activities and educational resources of Northwell Health. As more families become insured as a result of expanding health care coverage, nurse practitioners will play a key role in meeting the growing demand for access to care.
Students enrolled in the three-year Family Nurse Practitioner program at the Hofstra Northwell School of Graduate Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies are nurses – many working full-time and supporting a family. For some, tuition costs are a serious hardship. Support from the Horace and Amy Hagedorn Fund establishes an endowed scholarship fund for deserving students in the Family Nurse Practitioner program, who will be known as the Hagedorn Scholars.
Prior to her death in 2016, Amy Hagedorn and the Hagedorn family had been dedicated supporters of Northwell Health for more than 40 years. The Hagedorn Foundation has been a catalyst for endorsing and funding some of Northwell Health’s most important initiatives, which have had a direct and lasting impact on patients and the community. With their support, Northwell Health has been able to provide critically-needed community services through programs including the Hagedorn Cleft Palate and Craniofacial Center, Hagedorn Center for OB/GYN at North Shore University Hospital, Katz Women’s and Glen Cove Hospitals, and the Cochlear Implant Pediatric Program, among others.
Amy Hagedorn was also a former member of Hofstra University’s Board of Trustees, as well as a generous donor to the School of Education. Hagedorn Hall, which houses the School of Education and the Hofstra Northwell School of Graduate Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies is named in honor of Amy and Horace Hagedorn.
“My mother was committed to the notion of very early health and social interventions in the lives of children,” said Lisa Valentine, Amy’s daughter. “She always believed that the quality of early engagement of parents with their young children is critical to the health of the individuals, their families, their communities and society in general.”
“The generous donation from Amy Hagedorn will allow us to have a direct and meaningful impact on our students’ lives by providing the support system our nurses need to succeed in 21st century health care delivery,” said Kathleen Gallo, PhD, MBA, RN, FAAN, founding dean of the Hofstra Northwell School of Graduate Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies. “Students in our program will play an important role in new initiatives developed by Northwell Health – including the Northwell Health Visits program – that are aimed at improving the health and well-being of our community members.”
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About Northwell Health
Northwell Health is New York State’s largest health care provider and private employer, with 23 hospitals, more than 650 outpatient facilities and nearly 15,000 affiliated physicians. We care for over two million people annually in the New York metro area and beyond, thanks to philanthropic support from our communities. Our 66,000 employees – 15,000-plus nurses and 4,000 employed doctors, including members of Northwell Health Physician Partners – are working to change health care for the better. We’re making breakthroughs in medicine at the Feinstein Institute for Medical Research. We're training the next generation of medical professionals at the visionary Donald and Barbara Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell and the Hofstra Northwell School of Graduate Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies. For information on our more than 100 medical specialties, visit Northwell.edu.
About Hofstra University
Hofstra University is a nationally ranked and recognized private university in Hempstead, N.Y. that is the only school to ever host three consecutive presidential debates (2008, 2012 and 2016). Our campus is a leafy oasis just a quick train ride away from New York City and all its cultural, recreational and professional opportunities. We offer small classes and personal attention, with the resources, technology and facilities of a large university. Students can choose from more than 160 undergraduate program options and 165 graduate program options in the liberal arts and sciences, education, health professions and human services, the Peter S. Kalikow School of Government, Public Policy and International Affairs, the Fred DeMatteis School of Engineering and Applied Science, the Frank G. Zarb School of Business, the Lawrence Herbert School of Communication, the Maurice A. Deane School of Law, the Hofstra Northwell School of Graduate Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies, and the Donald and Barbara Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell. Hofstra University is a dynamic community of more than 11,000 students from around the world who are dedicated to civic engagement, academic excellence and becoming leaders in their communities and their careers.
Julie Robinson-Tingue, Northwell Health Foundation
Karla Schuster, Hofstra University