PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The Philadelphia sports community is doing its part to answer the call for health care support during this coronavirus pandemic. On Friday, Penn Medicine announced that 76ers’ star Joel Embiid, alongside two of the team’s managing partners, are donating $1.3 million for critical support for health care workers.
Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie also pledged $1 million to Penn Medicine on Friday. That money will go to establishing the COVID-19 Immunology Defense Fund, which will “support both an emerging research program to test front-line health care workers for potential immunity to COVID-19, as well as provide flexibility for Penn Medicine’s researchers,” according to Penn.
“We are in the midst of a humanitarian crisis that is affecting all of us in so many ways,” Lurie said. “Every passing day brings new stories of heartbreaking tragedy, inspirational courage, and hopeful innovation. We can and will get through this, but only if we work together, care for each other, and focus our attention and resources towards sustainable strategies. There are so many individuals and organizations who are making daily sacrifices, and we are incredibly thankful for their dedication and bravery. We must continue to support these efforts in every way that we can, while also seeking a solution that will help us move forward.”
The Sixers’ donation will go towards establishing a funding campaign for COVID-19 antibody testing of frontline workers.
Full Court Press: @sixers star @JoelEmbiid, along with managing partner, Josh Harris, and co-managing partner, David Blitzer, are contributing $1.3 million to @PennMedicine to fund #COVID19 antibody testing of front line health care workers. https://t.co/larRpbjCcV
— Penn Medicine (@PennMedicine) April 3, 2020
“During this pandemic, many doctors and nurses are working like soldiers on the front lines of a war and they need to be provided with as much armor as possible in this battle,” Embiid said. “COVID-19 antibody testing can help Philadelphia health care workers at this critical time, and we need to do everything possible to help those heroes who are putting their lives at risk to help us.”