Re Shirley Berry letter on Sunday, “Growth requires more doctors”:
The writer stated some very good points about the need for more physicians in our area. I would like to let the community know that Grand Strand Health, a system comprised of Grand Strand Medical Center, South Strand Medical Center, outpatient facilities, physician practices and coming soon, North Strand ER, continues its commitment to providing high quality, safe health care that includes responding to the growing needs of our residents.
We are addressing this need by expanding our service lines and adding additional beds to the hospital. Most important to this growth is the addition of new physicians to our medical staff. This is being accomplished through constant physician recruitment and a new program we have started: Graduate Medical Education (GME).
Grand Strand Medical Center has become a teaching hospital where our GME programs help deliver medical care in multiple ways: increasing the ability to give more complex care locally so patients do not have to leave the area, attracting new physicians to our area because of an interest in a teaching program and most important, close to 60 percent of residents who complete their training will practice within 75 miles of where they trained.
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Our current GME programs include internal medicine and general surgery and in 2017, family practice and emergency medicine will join our programs.
We look forward to continuing to address the health care needs of our community.
Dr. Andrew Schwartz, chief medical officer, Grand Strand Medical Center