Michael Jordan funds two Novant Health clinics in his N.C. hometown

This gift is the latest in Novant Health Foundation’s ongoing partnership with the basketball legend to improve access to healthcare in underserved communities

On Feb. 15, Novant Health and Michael Jordan announced a $10 million gift to open two medical clinics in the greater Wilmington area on the southeastern coast of North Carolina.

Michael Jordan speaks at the ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Novant Health Michael Jordan Family Clinic in Charlotte, NC, October 2019.

The generous contribution is the latest effort in a partnership between our regional health care system and Jordan designed to increase access to quality healthcare throughout our communities. Our partnership began in 2017, when Jordan donated $7 million to Novant Health Presbyterian Medical Center Foundation to help build two health care clinics to serve Charlotte’s most at-risk and in-need communities. Today, these clinics successfully bring comprehensive primary care, including behavioral health and social support services, to the area’s most vulnerable communities.

Michael Jordan shakes hands with Carl Armato, chief executive officer of Novant Health, surrounded by Novant Health and foundation leadership at the ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Novant Health Michael Jordan Family Clinic in Charlotte, NC, October 2019.

Jordan’s latest gift will help Novant Health bring this same integrated care model to more rural and rural-adjacent communities in and around his hometown of Wilmington, North Carolina, offering much-needed services to those who are uninsured or underinsured. The two additional clinics are slated to open in early 2022.

“I am very proud to once again partner with Novant Health to expand the Family Clinic model to bring better access to critical medical services in my hometown,” Jordan said in a statement. “Everyone should have access to quality health care, no matter where they live, or whether or not they have insurance. Wilmington holds a special place in my heart, and it’s truly gratifying to be able to give back to the community that supported me throughout my life.”

To date, the two Novant Health Michael Jordan Family Clinics in Charlotte have seen more than 4,500 patients, in addition to providing critical COVID-19 response. Nearly 1,000 COVID-19 vaccines have been administered from both the Freedom Drive and North End locations, with plans to scale up vaccination efforts even further as supply increases.

“This pandemic has exacerbated health equity gaps across our state, making our efforts to close them even more emergent. We look forward to standing these clinics up as quickly as possible to ensure all members of the community have access to necessary medical care” said Carl Armato, president and CEO of Novant Health. “We are so appreciative of Michael’s unwavering commitment to help us bring affordable care to our communities that need it most. It’s not only an investment in us as a partner, but it’s an investment in each and every person that our clinics can reach.”

Today’s announcement comes on the heels of Novant Health finalizing its purchase of New Hanover Regional Medical Center (NHRMC), which includes a partnership with UNC Health and UNC School of Medicine. The health care system, which beat out five systems to move forward with the sale, stressed its commitment to bringing clinics and services to underserved communities as a tenant of its proposal.

“When we set out to partner with New Hanover Regional Medical Center, we made it absolutely clear that one of our top priories was to improve health outcomes in southeastern North Carolina, with access to affordable care for all,” Armato added. “With Michael’s gift, we’ll be able to more quickly, and directly, have an impact. The establishment of these two new clinics reinforces our true commitment to improving the health of the southeast region.”

The $10 million gift from Michael Jordan was made to Novant Health Foundation, which has now received a total of $17 million in funds from Jordan dedicated to developing clinics, which are owned and operated by Novant Health. “Novant Health is committed to providing broad, equitable, and affordable healthcare to the communities we serve. Gifts like the one we are thrilled to announce today make that commitment possible, and we are beyond grateful to Michael Jordan for his continued support and belief in our ability to deliver innovative, holistic care to all,” said Ann Caulkins, senior vice president of Novant Health and president of Novant Health Foundation.