Ceremony welcomes new health-care facility into Medical Center family
By Jack Mazurak
During a noontime ceremony in Grenada, physicians, nurses, executives and leaders from the city, community, county, state and national levels braved cold temperatures to join in welcoming the area’s premier health-care facility into the University of Mississippi Medical Center family.
The event formally christened the former Grenada Lake Medical Center as the University of Mississippi Medical Center Grenada.
“We’re extremely proud to be here,” said Dr. James E. Keeton, vice chancellor for health affairs. “The main reason we’re all here and the main reason for the University of Mississippi Medical Center Grenada is to improve the health of people in Mississippi.
“This is a special place: Where you are, your location is critical for health care in Mississippi, right in the middle of the state.”
Collins addresses the crowd.
Speakers at the event included U.S. Rep. Gregg Harper, Chad Bridges, Grenada County Board of Supervisors president, Billy Collins, Grenada mayor, and Pablo Diaz, Grenada Economic Development District executive director.
Dr. LouAnn Woodward, associate vice chancellor for health affairs and vice dean of the School of Medicine, outlined new opportunities for medical residents and health-professions students to train at UMMC Grenada.
“We feel very proud and very fortunate to be in this position to partner with you, with the hospital staff, with the physicians and with the community leaders to make this Medical Center something that we are all very, very proud of,” said Woodward, who grew up in neighboring Carroll County.
David Putt, newly named UMMC Grenada chief executive officer, said he’s looking forward to continuing to work alongside UMMC Grenada’s dedicated staff, regional leaders and the community’s physician work force.
Putt had filled the CEO role on an interim basis since a management deal became effective last fall.
UMMC entered into a long-term lease for the Grenada facility with the Grenada County Board of Supervisors early this year.
Inside the hospital lobby, Medical Center executives pulled off a decorative cover to reveal a wall-mounted, backlit U logo that will greet patients, visitors and families as they come into the facility through glass double doors.