Columbus Children's Hospital Receives $50 Million Gift From Nationwide Foundation

June 7, 2006

Columbus Childrens Hospital today announced that it has received a ten-year, $50 million commitment from Nationwide Foundation to support expansion of programs and construction of a new main hospital that will further position the hospital as one of the nations top pediatric health care and research facilities.  Unprecedented in Central Ohio, it is one of the largest philanthropic gifts ever from a corporate foundation in the U.S. and it is also the second largest single gift ever given to a childrens hospital nationally or internationally.*
The Nationwide gift will have an enormous impact on the delivery of world-class pediatric health care in central Ohio and beyond.  Patients and families relying on superior, family-centered comprehensive care and research in childhood diseases and injury treatment will benefit.

During the last decade, Columbus Childrens Hospital has emerged as a national leader in pediatric care and research, said Abigail S. Wexner, chairman of the Childrens Hospital Inc. and Childrens Hospital Boards of Trustees.  This transformational commitment from Nationwide Foundation further cements our ability to be among the worlds leaders not only in pediatric care, but also research and education, while continuing our founding mission of providing needed care to all children regardless of any familys ability to pay.

When families come to Childrens Hospital, theyre often dealing with very stressful issues.  This gift reflects our philanthropic priority to help all families in times of crisis, said Jerry Jurgensen, Nationwide chief executive officer.  Were pleased this gift enables Childrens to further solidify its position as a national leader in pediatric care and research.  This and future gifts will help Childrens become a world-class destination for pediatric care. 

To help position Childrens at the national level, and in commemoration of Nationwide Foundations gift, the hospitals Trustees have voted to re-name the hospital Nationwide Childrens Hospital, effective early in 2007. 

This magnificent gift is something our entire community can celebrate and will have an enormous impact on the delivery of pediatric healthcare in central Ohio and beyond, said Ann Isaly Wolfe, former Childrens Hospital board chair and current chair of the hospitals fundraising campaign.   It speaks not only of the historic generosity of Nationwide as a corporate citizen, but also to the companys commitment to the well being of our children here and across the nation.

Already the fifth largest childrens hospital in the U.S. and among the top ten in National Institutes of Health-funded freestanding pediatric research centers, Columbus Childrens serves as the free-standing childrens hospital for all of central and southeastern Ohio as well as receiving hundreds of specialty referrals from throughout the United States and worldwide.  Childrens is also home to The Ohio State University College of Medicine Department of Pediatrics.

In the fall of 2005, the hospital announced an ambitious $740 million seven-year strategic expansion effort which includes planned investments in facilities, patient care and research programs, and talent recruitment. 

The Nationwide Foundation gift will support several key areas within Childrens growth plan.  Areas for focused investment include programmatic support for child safety and injury prevention, neonatal intensive care, and the heart center.  Program support will provide for extended clinical services to care for premature and sick infants, including those with serious congenital heart disease, as well as key research that will directly impact patient care.  In the area of child safety, a portion of the gift will increase the impact and reach of Childrens expert team to further reduce death and disability from childhood injury through research and prevention efforts, including car seat and bicycle helmet distribution and school-based injury prevention programs.  Additionally, the gift will support the creation of several endowed chairs, representing the highest endorsement of a physician or scientist, and enabling Childrens to recruit and retain world-renowned talent. 

Lastly, a portion of the Nationwide gift will support construction toward the new main hospital building, a world-class facility where families can be engaged at a new level, receiving culturally sensitive care, information and support during their childs stay at Childrens. 

On behalf of the children we care for today and for future generations, we are extremely grateful and indebted to Nationwide, Wexner said. It is a comfort for every parent to know that our children will never have to leave Central Ohio to access the best pediatric care in the nation.

*based on published resources

About Nationwide Children's Hospital

Named to the Top 10 Honor Roll on U.S. News & World Report’s 2019-20 list of “Best Children’s Hospitals,” Nationwide Children’s Hospital is one of America’s largest not-for-profit freestanding pediatric health care systems providing wellness, preventive, diagnostic, treatment and rehabilitative care for infants, children and adolescents, as well as adult patients with congenital disease. Nationwide Children’s has a staff of more than 13,000 providing state-of-the-art pediatric care during more than 1.5 million patient visits annually. As home to the Department of Pediatrics of The Ohio State University College of Medicine, Nationwide Children’s physicians train the next generation of pediatricians and pediatric specialists. The Abigail Wexner Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hospital is one of the Top 10 National Institutes of Health-funded freestanding pediatric research facilities. More information is available at