The Origin of Greater Rochester Health Foundation (the Health Foundation)
In the 1970s, a group of community and business leaders sought a
way to improve the health of the Greater Rochester community. They formed an
innovative health plan, the health maintenance organization Preferred Care,
that operated successfully and with sustained growth for more than 25 years.
As the influence of managed care waned, the board of directors of Preferred
Care considered new approaches that were true to the original intent of the
founding board - to improve the health of the Greater Rochester community. The
board concluded that an independent private foundation would have the most
significant impact on the health of the community.
In 2006, Preferred Care was acquired by the not-for-profit MVP Health Plan. In
turn, MVP Health Plan contributed $200 million toward the development of a
community foundation and Greater Rochester Health Foundation (the Health Foundation) was born.
In January 2012, MVP Health Plan sent the Health Foundation the final payment of $32,015,695,
which was added to the total assets of the Foundation.
Since its inception, the Health Foundation has acted as an independent foundation
governed by a community-based board of directors and managed by a professional
staff. It is intended to be a sustainable source of funding to
encourage local organizations to replicate the best evidence-based practices in
community health, and to make it possible for the Greater Rochester area to
improve community health. Each year, the Health Foundation awards five percent of its total
assets to organizations in its nine-county area - Genesee, Livingston,
Monroe, Ontario, Orleans, Seneca, Wayne, Wyoming and Yates counties.
The Health Foundation is able to play an important role in improving the health of
the community by taking a focused approach to investing in health initiatives
that will achieve impact. The Foundation considers requests for funding in the
areas of: health care delivery, neighborhood health status
improvement and prevention. Funding proposals are evaluated through a variety
of means including external review panels.