Hospital Association Chairman Calls For Solutions To Poor Health Status

Columbia, SC, March 5, 2007 – The South Carolina Hospital Association's new chairman is calling on his colleagues to work together to help improve the health status of the state's citizens.

Bruce Bailey, CEO of the Georgetown Hospital System and the new SCHA chairman, cited a number of national rankings in which South Carolina falls at or near the bottom. For example, in December 2006, the United Health Foundation ranked the Palmetto State the 48th healthiest or third least healthy state among the 50.

"We are 50th in the number of ninth graders reaching graduation. We rank 50th in violent crime per capita. We rank 47th in obesity. We rank 46th in infant mortality.South Carolina can and should improve these outcomes and I think that we, as the leaders of the healthcare system in our state, must become the voice that elevates the debate on how we can improve. Insurance coverage is highly associated with better health status, higher productivity and higher educational achievement. We owe it to our businesses, to our neighbors and most importantly to our children to find solutions to the uninsured problem in our state," he said. Working for affordable health care coverage for all is one of the Association's top legislative priorities.

At the meeting, the SCHA membership elected John Miller, CEO of AnMed Health in Anderson, chairman-elect and reelected three board members to their second three-year terms. They are Rebecca Brewer, CEO of Colleton Medical Center in Walterboro, Joe Howell, CEO of Upstate Carolina Medical Center in Gaffney, and Stuart Smith, executive director of the MUSC Medical Center in Charleston.

About the South Carolina Hospital Association
Founded in 1921, the South Carolina Hospital Association is the leadership organization and principal advocate for the state's hospitals and health care systems. Based in Columbia, SCHA works with its members to improve access, quality and cost-effectiveness of health care for all South Carolinians. The state's hospitals and health care systems employ more than 70,000 persons statewide.



03-04-2007 12:00 (EST)