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Margaret Helton, MD, has been named Chair of the UNC School of Medicine’s Department of Family Medicine. This new position marks a continuation of the leadership that Helton has provided to the Department since being named Interim Chair in the Spring of 2019.

Margaret Helton profile shot
Margaret Helton, MD

Under her leadership the Department has made significant advances, including the launching of the Maternity Care Center at Chatham Hospital, transitioning the Department’s inpatient services to UNC Medical Center’s Hillsborough Campus, opening two new clinics, and expanding the research program. She led the department through COVID-19 as its members led testing efforts, pivoted to virtual care services, and implemented innovative means to educate medical students and other learners. Dr. Helton leads the statewide family medicine department, maintaining the academic connections to our partner campuses across North Carolina.

“Dr. Helton has been an outstanding leader for the Department over the last two years and especially through the challenges of COVID-19. I’m very excited for her to continue her leadership as Chair and look forward to proudly supporting the work of the Family Medicine faculty as they improve the health of North Carolinians and train our next generation of physicians,” said Cristy Page, MD, MPH, Executive Dean of the UNC School of Medicine and former Chair of Family Medicine.

Prior to being named Interim Chair, Helton held numerous leadership roles including Vice Chair for Clinical Excellence, Associate Chair for Faculty Affairs, Director of Career Development Fellowships, Director of Operations, and Director of Maternal and Child Health.

Dr. Helton attended medical school at the University of Michigan and completed her residency and fellowship at UNC. Her clinical interests include full spectrum family medicine, women’s health, and geriatrics. She serves as the Medical Director of the Carol Woods Retirement Community in Chapel Hill.

“It has been an honor to lead our Family Medicine faculty as we work to improve the health of people across North Carolina. I’m excited to support the personal and professional development of our faculty, fellows, residents, and staff, as we strive to lead the nation in clinical excellence, education, research, and service,” said Helton.