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Published on May 19, 2021

Gundersen, the Y, partner for new physical therapy space at the Houser Branch

Healthy communities depend upon strong community partners. This approach is driving another project to expand Gundersen Health System and La Crosse Area Family YMCA efforts to provide even more health and wellness opportunities.

Gundersen and the Y are partnering on a new space for Gundersen physical therapy services at the R.W. Houser Family YMCA branch in Onalaska. This new space is tentatively scheduled to open fall 2021, pending construction and coordination. 

"Gundersen and the La Crosse Area Family YMCA have enjoyed a strong, positive, collaborative relationship for many years," shares Scott Rathgaber, MD, chief executive officer, Gundersen Health System. "The commitment to the Y Houser branch in Onalaska builds on the success of the Gundersen and Y Healthy Living Center at the Dahl branch in La Crosse, one of the first centers of its kind in the United States that opened in 2016. Together, we are creating healthier communities." 

"We are incredibly proud of the relationship that exists between the Y and Gundersen Health System and we look forward to a Gundersen presence in the Houser YMCA", according to Y CEO, Bill Soper. "Together, our organizations are positively impacting the health and well-being of our community by improving the lives of our neighbors and friends."  

The new space for Gundersen physical therapy services will improve access to Gundersen services and will enhance health and well-being for our community. It will include:

  • Outpatient and orthopedic physical therapy
  • Sports physical therapy
  • Aquatic therapy in a new warm water pool
  • Individual and group therapy programming
  • Convenience for Gundersen patients and Y members

The new physical therapy space will be used exclusively for Gundersen patient care and treatment. The warm water therapy pool will be used by Gundersen during certain hours and by the Y during other hours for member use and classes or programs.

About the Y

Locally founded in 1883, the La Crosse Area Family YMCA is a powerful association committed to bringing about lasting personal and social change. With a focus on nurturing the potential of every child and teen, improving the nation's health and well-being and providing opportunities to give back and support neighbors, the Y enables youth, adults, families and communities to be healthy, confident, connected and secure.

 A nonprofit organization, the La Crosse Area Family YMCA serves over 30,000 people annually through our two branches located in La Crosse and Onalaska and 16 YMCA School Age Care sites. This tremendous outreach would not be possible without the generous support of our community.

About Gundersen

Gundersen Health System is a physician-led, non-profit, comprehensive integrated healthcare network headquartered in La Crosse, Wis. We have more than 9,000 employees, including nearly 1,000 clinicians, serving 21 counties in western Wisconsin, southeastern Minnesota, and northeast Iowa. With more than one million patient visits every year across our seven hospitals and more than 60 clinic locations, Gundersen's purpose is to enhance the health and well-being of our communities and enrich every life we touch. Learn more about our excellence in patient care, education, research and something we call Love + Medicine at 

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