Community Practitioner Program

History of the Program

Thirty 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 Foundation does receive donations from physicians and other healthcare providers to do this work along with other partners.

The Impact since the Program’s Inception More Than 30 Years Ago:


Value of care provided to under- and uninsured patients


Number of primary care providers assisted


Number of  NC counties out of 100 total where practitioners have been placed


Unique locations where participants practice

Learn more about CPP and the program’s incredible participants in the videos below:

Print Friendly, PDF & Email