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Richard M. Schulze Family Foundation gifts Abbott Northwestern Hospital $2 Million for neuro intensive care center expansion

MINNEAPOLIS 06/29/2015

Abbott Northwestern Hospital today announced that the Richard M. Schulze Family Foundation has made a $2 million gift to Abbott Northwestern Hospital's Critical Care Campaign. The gift will support the expansion of the hospital's neuro intensive care unit. The expanded unit will be named The Richard M. Schulze Neuro Intensive Care Center when it opens in late 2016.

"The volume of patients needing treatment for neurological disorders–an area of care that has special significance for my family–is on the rise," said Richard M. Schulze, founder and chairman of the Richard M. Schulze Family Foundation and founder and chairman emeritus of Best Buy Co., Inc. "Abbott Northwestern has demonstrated its commitment to pioneering, high-quality care. The Foundation is delighted to support the essential work of the Neuro Intensive Care Center and help broaden the impact it can have on the lives of patients and their families."

Abbott Northwestern receives more referrals of patients with neurological disorders and performs more brain and spine surgeries than any other hospital in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area. More than 50 neuroscience physicians on the hospital's medical staff work together to provide comprehensive care for individuals with any neurological condition. The majority of patients with strokes, brain tumors, aneurysms, arteriovenous malformation and high-risk spinal surgeries require intensive post-operative care.

"We are honored to receive the Richard M. Schulze Family Foundation's generous support, and delighted to attach their family's name to this new center. Their support will help align Abbott Northwestern's neuro intensive care unit facilities with our exceptional staff," said Ben Bache-Wiig, MD, president, Abbott Northwestern Hospital.

The existing neuro ICU, known today as PB2000, was created to serve neuro and medical/surgical intensive care patients. Because the hospital was a Primary Stroke Center for a number of years and became a Comprehensive Stroke Center in 2014, the number of stroke patients has been increasing.

PB2000 has been operating near full capacity for several years. The expansion will allow a 30 percent increase in patient volume. In addition, a neuro-only intensive care center will better prepare Abbott Northwestern to accept increasing numbers of patients needing complex, critical neurological care.

The Richard M. Schulze Neuro Intensive Care Center will have expanded space to better accommodate technological changes and meet patient and family needs, as well as daily neuro-intensivist physician rounding teams. Two new board-certified neuro-intensivists, a physician assistant and research coordinator will be added, as will greater capacity for stroke telehealth services, or TeleStroke, thanks to the Critical Care Campaign, which is entering its final phase of fundraising. Abbott Northwestern Hospital now has 13 TeleStroke sites across Minnesota, from which patients are remotely evaluated 24/7 by the stroke neurology team.

Abbott Northwestern Hospital is one of the nation's top 50 hospitals, as ranked by U.S. News & World Report, is the Twin Cities' largest hospital and is among the top-ranked hospitals in the nation for neurology and neurosurgery. The Critical Care Campaign was launched in 2013 to raise $15 million toward an overall $40 million renovation of Abbott Northwestern Hospital's ED and neuro ICU. Allina Health will provide the remaining $25 million for the critical care renovations.

The Critical Care Campaign is chaired by Ron Poole of Wayzata, and Ann Bentdahl of Edina.


Richard M. Schulze Family Foundation

The Richard M. Schulze Family Foundation was created in 2004 by Best Buy founder, Dick Schulze, as a way to give back to the community where Dick and his family grew up and where he built Best Buy to become the world's largest consumer electronics retailer. Schulze and his family believe that a good education, a supportive family and a strong work ethic prepare children for a successful future. To support that belief, the Foundation supports education, basic human services, health and medical research and transformational entrepreneurship.

About Abbott Northwestern Hospital

Abbott Northwestern Hospital is part of Allina Health. In addition to retaining its first place ranking for the best hospital in the Twin Cities and second in the State of Minnesota in the U.S. News & World Report's 2016-17 best hospital rankings, Abbott Northwestern has received nursing magnet certification, a recognition earned by only five percent of hospitals nationwide.

Allina Health is dedicated to the prevention and treatment of illness and enhancing the greater health of individuals, families and communities throughout Minnesota and western Wisconsin. A not-for-profit health care system, Allina Health cares for patients from beginning to end-of-life through its 90+ clinics, 12 hospitals, 15 retail pharmacies, specialty care centers and specialty medical services, home care, home oxygen and medical equipment and emergency medical transportation services

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