Six months since Novant Health partnership with New Hanover Regional Medical Center

New Hanover Regional Medical Center. (Photo: WWAY)

WILMINGTON, N.C. (WWAY) — Novant Health and New Hanover Regional Medical Center  marked six months since NHRMC joined Novant Health on Feb. 1, 2021.

The companies say they are continuing to make progress on initiatives to improve access to care, provide new technology in the hospital and build the local workforce.

The partnership opened new opportunities for collaboration and growth, as well as additional medical education and clinical capabilities through an expansion of NHRMC’s relationship with UNC Health and UNC School of Medicine.

“I am so proud of all of the intentional effort that has gone into making these initial months a success for our patients, our teams and the community,” said Carl S. Armato, president and CEO of Novant Health. “I’m excited for a bright future as we continue to work together to provide remarkable care.”

Recent accomplishments that members of the partnership point to include:

  • Increasing equitable access to vaccines. More than 5,700 community members have been vaccinated at 32 pop-up vaccination events held in southeastern North Carolina.
  • Growing our local healthcare team. Novant Health and NHRMC hosted a large daylong career fair in downtown Wilmington to connect with job seekers and share information about the health system’s varied career opportunities.
  • Supporting families in Brunswick County. Novant Health Brunswick Medical Center hosted a free community baby shower on July 24, 2021, and donated 14,000 diapers, more than 10 car seats, 10 strollers and three dozen gift baskets.
  • Synchronizing and improving stroke care. Novant Health helped NHRMC implement, a software platform that uses artificial intelligence to reduce delays that can stand between patients and lifesaving treatments.
  • Providing more seamless access to care across the system. On June 1, 2021, the NHRMC Physician Group officially joined Novant Health Medical Group, a physician-led organization that is part of Novant Health. The NHRMC Physician Group has 220 physicians and 112 advanced care providers for a total of 332 providers who care for patients across the region.
  • Exploring how to deliver more remarkable experiences to the Coastal region. Novant Health has set up a Community Voice e-advisor council.
  • Demonstrating our commitment to diversity, inclusion and equity. On May 13, Novant Health launched a listening tour engaging more than 750 team members and community members in more than 70 events.
  • Supporting access to care. The UNC School of Medicine’s Wilmington campus has its first student from the school’s Fully Integrated Readiness for Service Training, or FIRST, Program. The physician will start her career working as rural doctor in eastern North Carolina.

“It is phenomenal to see how our teams and providers live out our mission to improve the health of our community,” said Shelbourn Stevens, president of NHRMC and the Novant Health Coastal market. “Novant Health remains committed to providing resources to meet the needs of this growing region.”

Additionally, members say they are looking forward to the further implementation of a number of initiatives, including the following:

  • Novant Health announced a $10 million gift from Michael Jordan to open two medical clinics in New Hanover County. Efforts are underway to finalize the locations of the clinics, which should open by 2023.
  • NHRMC adopted the Novant Health financial assistance policy, providing more robust assistance to those who need it most, by increasing qualification for a 100% write-off from 200% to 300% of the federal poverty level. For example, an uninsured family of four with an annual income $78,600 or lower does not receive a medical bill under the policy.
  • Novant Health extended its $15 per hour healthy community wage to about 1,100 NHRMC team members.
  • NHRMC adopted Novant Health’s mission, vision and values, including the mission of existing “to improve the health of our communities, one person at a time.”
  • Since joining Novant Health, NHRMC welcomed 16 new students to its UNC School of Medicine’s Wilmington Campus. This is the largest cohort of students we have hosted since becoming a branch campus. Novant Health looks forward to continuing to expand the program to train more physicians in the future.

For more information on Novant Health’s partnership with NHRMC, visit here.