In 1958, the Columbus Medical Association Foundation was established by central Ohio physicians as a health education foundation. By the late 1990s, the CMAF had grown into one of the most significant grantmaking foundations for health and wellness initiatives in the country. In fact, the CMAF has awarded over $40 million to more than 400 local nonprofits since 1992.
From a "reactionary" foundation to a foundation that is a "catalyst for significant change"
By the mid-2000s, the CMAF adopted a catalytic grant-making philosophy that focused on effecting significant change. The CMAF prioritized initiatives and funded grants that offered the greatest hope for creating significant, constructive change or action. The emphasis was on health systems related to increasing access to health care, reducing health disparities and increasing health literacy.
By 2009, CMAF had further crystallized its strategic direction by identifying its priorities and selecting the grantee recipients that would effect change in each area. The foundation priorities adopted in 2009 exist today. These priorities include:
• Transforming clinical healthcare delivery
• Supporting and improving health care safety net clinical services to uninsured and underinsured populations
• Saving and improving lives through the coordination of trauma and emergency health care resources
• Teaching physicians to improve the patient/provider relationship by combining wellness with leadership
• Encouraging leadership among youth by engaging in health philanthropy
A community vehicle to facilitate giving back
In the late 1990s the Foundation entered into the Development and Fundraising arena to provide others with the opportunity to join them in improving the health of the community.
As a 501(c)(3) organization, the Foundation continues to serve as a vehicle for individuals and organizations to give back to the community by supporting its targeted priorities or by creating funds dedicated to fulfilling their specific interest in health.
Every healthy organization begins as a healthy idea
Stories of how the CMAF helped the "healthy ideas" of community members contribute to improved healthcare.