NCMS Foundation Program Encourages Providers to Practice in Rural Areas
August 10, 2015
Twenty-five years ago, a group of entrepreneurial and forward thinking leaders came together to plan new ways to increase the recruitment and retention of primary care providers in rural North Carolina. In 1989, the vision, wisdom and passion of two leaders, Dr. Harvey Estes and Jim Bernstein, and the contributions of key state organizations paved the way for the birth of the Community Practitioner Program.
The Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust provided the generous financial support of $4.5 million to make the program a reality, helping medically underserved communities across North Carolina attract and retain needed medical practitioners. In 2005, The Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina (BCBSNC) Foundation provided additional support to the Community Practitioner Program through a five-year $10M grant. While the program receives no state or federal funds, the NCMS Foundation does receive donations from physicians and other healthcare providers to do this work along with other partners.
The program has an immense impact on access to care in rural North Carolina. It has provided roughly $350 million in care to under- and uninsured patients since its inception. Over 400 providers have benefitted, too.
The contributions to patients and providers are invaluable to the areas served by the program. To learn more, watch the video and visit our website.