After already caring for East Carolina athletes for more than 35 years, Orthopaedics East & Sports Medicine Center made a joint announcement with ECU athletics Thursday to become official team physicians for the Pirates.
The multi-year elevated partnership will continue Orthopaedics East & Sports Medicine Center’s role as ECU’s preferred orthopaedic care provider for more than 400 student-athletes, as well as provide additional exposure and benefits for aligning with ECU athletics at the official level.
“We are excited to receive the designation as the official team physicians for ECU,” Orthopaedics East & Sports Medicine Center President Dr. Josh Duke said in a release. “This designation expands our relationship with ECU and brings the expertise of our orthopaedic surgeons to more than 400 student-athletes at the university.”
ECU’s release said the local medical practice will have use of the Pirates’ logos, visibility on the football, basketball and baseball coaches’ television shows and brand presence on the LED signage for home football, basketball and baseball games.
“We are excited to enhance our long-standing relationship with Orthopaedics East and Sports Medicine Center,” Pirate athletics director Jon Gilbert said. “The well-being of our student-athletes is our top priority and we are fortunate to have the expertise and knowledge of experienced orthopaedic surgeons and specialists working with our student-athletes.”
ECU football coach Mike Houston was also included in the release, saying he values the partnership with Orthopaedics East & Sports Medicine Center, located at 810 W.H. Smith Boulevard. The center’s local surgeons provide a variety of general and specialized operative and non-operative orthopaedic services to meet the musculoskeletal needs of the patients in eastern North Carolina.
“We are very appreciative of the care and commitment Orthopaedic East & Sports Medicine Center has provided for our program,” Houston said. “Our relationship, which now spans at least two generations of Pirate Football, has been built on a foundation of trust, enhanced by a collaborative spirit and sealed with unparalleled service. While we are able to prioritize the health and welfare of our student-athletes through their expertise and support, Orthopaedics East also has a profound impact on all of Pirate Nation.”