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Novant Health Expands Healthcare Access in Underserved Communities Through YMCA Partnership

Analysis  |  By Eric Wicklund  
   March 09, 2023

The health system is partnering with the YMCA of Northwest North Carolina to add healthcare and wellness services, including telehealth clinics, in 17 sites across seven counties.

Novant Health is expanding access to health and wellness services for underserved populations through the YMCA.

The four-state, 15-hospital health system is bolstering a long-standing partnership with the YMCA of Northwest North Carolina with a program that includes wellness resources, support for youth sports, and on-site and telehealth healthcare services in 17 locations across seven counties.

The partnership seeks to close gaps in care by offering access to services in areas where it may be difficult to connect with healthcare providers, and through community-based locations that are easy to reach. The health system will use TytoCare telemedicine technology to facilitate virtual visits.

For example, Novant Health is building a 1,500-square-foot clinic inside the Winston Lake Family YMCA, which serves the East Winston-Salem community. The first-of-its-kind clinic will offer primary care, women's and children's care, rehabilitation services and diabetes and nutrition support resources. The clinic is expected to open in 2024, and services will be provided through a mobile community care cruiser until then.

“From diabetes prevention to cancer survivorship, Novant Health and the YMCA have always offered complementary services for our communities,” Chad Setliff, senior vice president and president of Winston-Salem-based Novant Health Forsyth Medical Center, said in a press release. “Moving forward, we’ll offer a more integrated wellness experience that leverages the best of both organizations to improve health outcomes for patients and members, strengthen wellness offerings, and reduce barriers to care through a combination of digital tools and co-located clinics.”  

“Now more than ever, organizations need to truly collaborate and partner together to drive systemic, meaningful change in our communities,” added Darryl Head, president and CEO of the YMCA of Northwest North Carolina. “Our strategic health and wellness partnership with Novant Health is an example of what can happen when two organizations work together to make change happen. Not only does this collaboration highlight our shared community benefit, but it will also expand our combined services, create new and innovative programming, and bring additional healthcare opportunities to East Winston, one of our most vulnerable areas, with a new, in-branch clinic.”

Health system executives said each new clinic will offer services identified through a Community Health Needs Assessment.

Eric Wicklund is the Innovation and Technology Editor for HealthLeaders.


Novant Health is based in North Carolina and consists of 15 hospitals and numerous healthcare sites in four states.

The health system is expanding a long-standing partnership with the Y to add healthcare services, including primary, women's and children's care, chronic care management and rehabilitation services, in some of the most underserved areas of northern North Carolina.

Alongside building health clinics in Y locations, the partnership will include telehealth services provided through TytoCare's telemedicine platform.

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