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FamilyCare, Inc. will donate $22.5 million to WesternU for a new behavioral health college

by Rodney Tanaka

March 28, 2022

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Jeff Heatherington, LHD (Hon.)

Western University of Health Sciences (WesternU) will receive a 22.5-million-dollar donation from FamilyCare, Inc., the largest gift in the University’s 45-year history. The donation will help WesternU expand the COMP-Northwest campus and launch a behavioral health college in Lebanon, Oregon. Dr. Jeff Heatherington, president of FamilyCare Health and president and CEO of The Heatherington Foundation for Innovation and Education in Health Care said the Heatherington Foundation will donate 150 acres of land to WesternU to build the new campus.

“On behalf of the WesternU Board of Trustees, I’d like to thank FamilyCare and Dr. Jeff Heatherington for his service to WesternU and dedication to promoting health and creating healthy communities,” said WesternU Board of Trustees Chair Elizabeth Zamora, MBA. “WesternU and The Heatherington Foundation for Innovation and Education in Health Care share a common passion for enhancing equity in health care and offering transformational health care opportunities that unite communities and provide access to health care for all populations.”

“It is an honor, pleasure, and privilege to partner with an extraordinary visionary such as Dr. Heatherington. This transformative gift and donation of land is timely for WesternU COMP-Northwest which is at an inflection point in our exceptional history,” said WesternU President Robin Farias-Eisner, MD, PhD, MBA. “We stand poised to build upon the legacy of our WesternU founders and upon our unique brand of humanism, whole body, mind, and spirit as applied to the unique and high-quality graduate education in a new college dedicated to behavioral health.”

“I am excited to have seen the development and expansion of the osteopathic medical school, COMP-Northwest, over the years. It continues to develop highly-qualified and desperately-needed physicians for the northwest every year,” Heatherington said. “Their Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine program is at capacity in its current location, and this gift will create a new and expanded Campus for COMP-NW and a behavioral health college to provide equally needed and critical behavioral health services.”

Dr. Heatherington’s companies have donated millions of dollars in grants and scholarships to WesternU COMP-Northwest, including the J. Scott Heatherington, DO and the Arthur Rott, DO Scholarship, the Medical Anatomy Center, research projects, and other programs.

“We are so grateful that Dr. Heatherington has provided longstanding support for COMP-Northwest. These gifts set the stage for innovation and education in health care that benefits the entire Northwest,” said Paula Crone, DO ’92, COMP-Northwest Dean and Vice President of WesternU Oregon. “While the new campus is in its preliminary planning stage, we envision it emphasizing behavioral health, rural health, population health, and osteopathic primary care – all critical health care needs. This generous gift will greatly enhance WesternU’s presence in the Pacific Northwest and services for our students, alumni, and our communities.”


About the Heatherington Foundation for Innovation and Education in Health Care, Inc.

Established in 2014 in Portland, Ore., the Heatherington Foundation’s mission is Creating Healthy Communities. Areas of focus include: 1) To improve community health care to individuals and families in the Portland, Oregon community, particularly to the socioeconomically underserved, the chronically mentally ill or indigent, at low cost or at no cost; 2) To promote and implement research related to improvement innovation and change in the delivery of health care; and 3) to provide osteopathic medical education to students, residents, and physicians.


About FamilyCare, Inc.

Since 1984, FamilyCare Health has been committed to keeping our communities healthy. They were one of Oregon’s largest capitated Medicaid health plans, serving 120,000 Medicaid and Medicare members with over 350 employees until 2018. Today, they remain dedicated to promoting healthy individuals and communities in Oregon.


About Western University of Health Sciences

Western University of Health Sciences (, located in Pomona, Calif. and Lebanon, Ore., is an independent nonprofit health professions university. WesternU COMP-Northwest opened in 2011 in Lebanon, Ore. The University has embarked on further expansion in Lebanon as a key part of the overall WesternU Strategic Plan, with the College of Health Sciences welcoming the inaugural Oregon cohort of Physical Therapy students in July 2021 and plans for Occupational Therapy in 2023. WesternU is home to WesternU Health, and WesternU Health Oliver Station, where the best in collaborative health care services is offered.

Related Media Release: State of Oregon and FamilyCare, Inc. announce settlement of federal court suit for $22.5 million Proceeds of the settlement will be donated to the College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific in Lebanon, OR.

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