Philadelphia 76ers big man Joel Embiid wants to help those on the frontlines fighting coronavirus. Embiid — along with 76ers managing partner Josh Harris and co-managing partner David Blitzer — are donating $1.3 million to Penn Medicine to assist in that fight.
More specifically, Embiid is donating the money to ensure healthcare workers receive antibody tests. Embiid, 26, spoke with two doctors from Penn Medicine to figure out the best way to use his donation.
Embiid explained to ESPN why he believes antibody tests were the way to go.
Embiid said he learned that "testing for COVID-19 antibodies has the chance to let health care workers know if they are immune to the virus."
"If they have immunity, then they can work in risky environments with the peace of mind that they most likely won't get infected again or spread the virus," he added. "In addition, it may be possible for those with a lot of antibodies to donate blood and help other patients that are very ill.
"Also, if a patient is sick and a family member has antibodies, it may be possible to allow that person to enter the hospital to comfort their family member, which is important. Ultimately, antibody testing could be used to determine when people can go back to work ... possibly even in the case of professional athletes like me."
Joel Embiid has already donated to help fight coronavirus
It’s not the first time Embiid has stepped up to help others impacted by coronavirus. In March, Embiid donated $500,000 to coronavirus medical relief.
Philadelphia 76ers star @JoelEmbiid has decided to pledge $500K to COVID-19 medical relief—to help survival and protection efforts in the community. AND he’s committed to helping Sixers employees who will suffer financial hardship in light of the franchise’s salary reductions.
— Ramona Shelburne (@ramonashelburne) March 24, 2020
Embiid stepped up and made that first donation when the 76ers were considering salary reductions. The team reportedly wanted to reduce pay by 20 percent for all full-time employees as a result of the season being postponed due to coronavirus. That decision was met with a tremendous amount of backlash by the public, who pointed out Harris is worth $3.9 billion. Harris and the 76ers reversed course quickly, which Embiid appreciated.
In these trying times, I’m proud of the Sixers organization for reversing course and “doing a 180”. Let’s focus on beating this Coronavirus now. Let’s be responsible and Trust the Process!!
— Joel “Do a 180” Embiid??? (@JoelEmbiid) March 24, 2020
Joel Embiid is not the only person in NBA making donations
Embiid is not the only person around the NBA who has made donations to help others. Giannis Antetokounmpo, Blake Griffin, Zion Williamson and others have made donations aimed at helping stadium workers affected by the season being postponed. The Dallas Mavericks and Golden State Warriors are among the teams that have pledged to cover employee salaries for missed games.
Embiid’s commitment to not just donating again, but to actually researching how his money could best be applied is admirable. In a time where people need extra help, Embiid is stepping up more than most.
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