Judy Gardetto donates $1.1 million to Advocate Aurora Health

Will support health initiative for aging adults

Aurora St Luke's Ranked Best Hospital in Milwaukee
Aurora St. Luke's Medical Center. (Credit: Lila Aryan)

Last updated on February 28th, 2020 at 03:17 pm

Philanthropist Judy Gardetto is donating $1.1 million to support Advocate Aurora Health’s programs for aging adults.

The gift will be directed toward the health system’s Aging Well initiative, which works to reduce the risk of falls, decrease emergency department recidivism and lower hospital readmission rates for older adults.

“With the generous gift from the Gardetto family, we will expand our training programs so that our health professionals are using geriatrics principles as they care for vulnerable older patients,” said Dr. Michael Malone, medical director of Aurora Senior Services and Aurora Health at Home. “This includes evidence-based falls prevention, tools to identify older adults at risk for returning to the Emergency Department, and protocols and resources to help patients and their families when they transition care from the hospital to home.”

Gardetto’s gift will allow the health system to expand its geriatric programs to more of its locations.

“As you get older, these are the kinds of issues we start to get concerned about,” Gardetto said. “Too many people don’t have the kind of help or resources around them that I have. That’s why I’m doing this.”

Judy and her late husband John Gardetto created Gardetto’s snack mix, which General Mills acquired in 1999.

The family has been longtime supporters of Aurora Health Care. In 2006, the family made a $1.5 million gift to bring one of the first Cyberknife technologies to Wisconsin, creating the John and Judy Gardetto Radiosurgery Center at Aurora St. Luke’s Medical Center.

“We’re so grateful to have visionary donors like Judy Gardetto who share our values and serve as a catalyst to enable us to develop new ways to provide excellent, coordinated and compassionate care for our older patients,” said Jim Skogsbergh, president and chief executive officer of Advocate Aurora Health.

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