Trust’s $10M gift will enhance health care at a Phoenix clinic

Alonzo Osche

As Arizonans face job and health insurance loss in the fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic, a Phoenix charity is investing $10 million to enhance medical care for uninsured people.

The Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust is donating the money to Creighton University, which will allow an increased number of the university’s Phoenix-based health science students to staff a Phoenix medical clinic operated by the Society of St. Vincent de Paul, leaders of the organizations said Thursday.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the impact of failing to prepare for and respond to broad, unaddressed health inequities in our community,” Mary Jane Rynd, president and CEO of Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust, said in a written statement. “The need is urgent, and our response cannot wait. Now is the time for higher education, social services and philanthropy to join and use our collective capacity to create a healthier, more resilient future.”

Faculty from Creighton University’s Phoenix campus, as well as third- and fourth-year medical students from the Jesuit Catholic school have volunteered monthly at the clinic for more than a decade. With the added funding, the St. Vincent de Paul clinic will now serve as the primary teaching facility for first- and second-year Creighton medical students as well, officials said.

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