LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) – The University of Louisville will get full ownership of its Cardiovascular Innovation Institute thanks a donation by the Jewish Heritage Fund for Excellence, the nonprofit that used to run the Jewish Hospital healthcare system.

U of L officials said Monday that the move won’t mean any immediate changes for the heart research institute, where university doctors work on breakthroughs like how to perform heart procedures in a zero-gravity environment.

The donation of the Jewish Heritage Fund’s interest in the Cardiovascular Innovation Institute is worth about $16 million, which is mainly the value of the institute building at 302 E. Muhammad Ali Blvd., which was built in 2007, said Dr. Toni Ganzel, dean of U of L’s medical school.

U of L and the Heritage Fund established the heart research institute in 2003. At that time, the Heritage Fund was a healthcare operator, Jewish Hospital & St. Mary’s Health Care. They had jointly owned it until Monday’s announcement.

Through mergers and eventual buyout, the Jewish organization would change its name and convert into a purely grant-making charity.

The Jewish Hospital system would become part of KentuckyOne Health, and on Nov. 1 U of L is set to buy the Jewish Hospital properties from KentuckyOne.

U of L President Neeli Bendapudi said Monday’s announcement about the cardiovascular institute is unrelated to U of L’s KentuckyOne takeover, which remains on track for Nov. 1.

The Jewish Heritage Fund for Excellence is separately helping to fund U of L’s KentuckyOne takeover with a $10 million donation.

As for the heart institute transaction, Bendapudi said, “It’s really JHFE’s confidence as to what’s happening here … we are just happy to have it as an asset on our books.”

Reach reporter Chris Otts at 502-585-0822, cotts@wdrb.com, on Twitter or on Facebook. Copyright 2019 WDRB News. All rights reserved.