PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — Tuesday, Bradley University and OSF Healthcare announced an expansion of their Bradley-OSF Strategic Alliance.

The new Innovation for Health partnership will bring the two entities together for research to help solve issues facing the healthcare industry.

“This partnership is a wonderful opportunity to work collaboratively to bring together people who train differently, they perhaps think a little bit differently,” said Robert Sehring, CEO of OSF Healthcare.

For example, Bradley University President Dr. Stephen Standifird said healthcare literacy is one area that this alliance may look to address.

“Understanding the medicine but being able to communicate it in a way that really enhances that literacy is very important, and to do that well it takes both parties coming together in some creative ways,” Standifird said.

Through the partnership, participants will be able to submit research proposals pertaining to healthcare issues and receive input. The OSF-Bradley agreement commits $1 million for each of the next five years to provide annual funding opportunities in the fall and spring for innovative, interdisciplinary projects addressing important healthcare challenges.

“It’s an opportunity to both vet ideas, create new partnerships, and funding to move those ideas forward,” Standifird said.

Sehring said the expanded relationship has the potential to assist recruitment for both institutions.

“They may not come in as a clinician, they may come in as an engineer, they may come in on the business side, and a whole host of different areas, all with the benefit to improve healthcare,” Sehring said.

The agreement is for five years but Sehring said he anticipates it will last beyond that timeframe.