The Business & Entrepreneurship (B&E) Clinic likes to follow up with former clients to see how their business has done in the time since consultation has ended. Recently we were able to connect with the B&E Clinic’s very first client, non-profit women’s medical resource, Share the Health.
Sometimes even the most impactful missions start with a question. For Share the Health, the question was “Where do women go in Madison who have no insurance and need cancer preventing gynecologic procedures?” The question was spurred when Katherine O’Rourke, resident at the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics, wanted to know what more could be done to reduce unnecessary gynecological cancers in the patients they were seeing. Katherine came from another state where a resource like this existed, but wanted to know what could be done in the Madison area. Katherine posed the question to her advisor, Mary Landry, and the two immediately began working on a solution. It was quickly evident to Mary that a free, consultation-based model to provide underserved women with gynecologic consultations and outpatient procedures would need to be built from scratch. They considered partnering with some existing resources that served uninsured people in the area, but realized that funding and administrative constraints from these organizations could make that impossible. Instead, the goal would be to create a self-sustaining nonprofit model that could originate in Dane County and eventually expand geographically. This is the stage where the B&E clinic was able to help.
Armed with the clinical expertise, a network of medical professionals, and the passion to make a difference, Mary and Katherine sought to create the legal structure and operating plans necessary for Share the Health to succeed. Mary states that the B&E clinic was crucial because without a sound business plan, the model would not be sustainable. There are considerable expenses associated with the enterprise, but properly budgeting for these expenses has meant Share the Health can appropriately fundraise and forecast future needs. The B&E clinic modeled out expenses ranging from Director and Officer insurance, software licensing, interpretation services, website hosting, and even printing costs for community educational programming, advertisements and follow-up notifications.
Share the Health has been operating now for over five years and sees about 100 patients per year. This success story would not be possible without the generous volunteering of board certified OBGYN physicians, nurses, lab technicians, Spanish medical interpreters, ultrasound technicians and other professionals. The Business & Entrepreneurship clinic is simply happy to be associated with this great cause and successful non-profit entity.