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The ideas of today making a difference tomorrow

​​​​​​​​​Your gifts at work

Marshfield Clinic researchers have amazing tools available to them for medical research. In the early 2000s, more than 20,000 people signed up to participate in the Personalized Medicine Research Project and donated blood and serum samples, creating an impressive resource for genetic research.

Marshfield Clinic also developed CattailsMD, the Clinic's electronic medical record system. It provides not only top-notch care to patients throughout its expansive geographic area, but also a valuable warehouse of information used for research.

Researchers at Marshfield Clinic launched these projects because they had a vision for the future, where these tools would position Marshfield Clinic as a leader in medical research. Today, these are the tools scientists and physicians use to perform research in cancer, cardiology, multiple sclerosis, genetics, epidemiology, farm medicine and many other important areas.

How can Marshfield Clinic encourage forward thinking and innovative ideas like these in the future?

Melvin Laird, one of the Clinic's most dedicated research advocates, said in a recent address at a Marshfield Clinic event: "People are the most important asset of Marshfield Clinic. Our workforce possesses the work ethic that has no equal. It makes this a special place to be and to grow."

The Marshfield Clinic Research Institute recently established the Fund for Innovation and Growth to support the researchers at Marshfield Clinic with ideas for new and creative projects that could have a significant and positive impact on the future of medicine.

"Coupling talented researchers with the resources allowing them to think outside of the box is a recipe for success," says Richard Leer, M.D., interim director of medical research.

Many donors choose to make gifts to support medical research at Marshfield Clinic, but do not earmark them for any specific kind of research, giving researchers flexibility in exploring new ideas. Many times these are lifetime gifts, but some donors also continue to give by including a gift to benefit research in their estate.

Marshfield Clinic Research Institute allocates these gifts to areas of research that hold the most potential. Because of the importance of encouraging innovation, this year these unrestricted gifts have been allocated to the Fund for Innovation and Growth.

"We're just starting the Fund for Innovation and Growth," said Dr. Leer. "The fund currently stands at about $550,000, and we hope to reach a goal of $4 million."

"The late Dr. Ben Lawton said it best," said Laird, quoting the former Clinic surgeon and leader. "A future without medical research is no future at all.' Medical research made possible through gifts to this fund will create a future of which Dr. Lawton would be proud."

For more information about giving to this fund or other funds at Marshfield Clinic, contact the Development Department at 1-800-858-5220