When Dr. Jeffrey Vitter speaks of the University of Mississippi in Oxford, he speaks of the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson.
“The University of Mississippi is one university, and the two campuses are incredibly important components,” said Vitter, who on Jan. 1 begins work as UM's chancellor. “We have the synergy and the opportunities to collaborate, grow and expand, and we have a real competitive advantage if we can improve how faculty at both campuses collaborate.”
Vitter on Thursday spent the day at UMMC, meeting with faculty and staff and visiting hospitals and research facilities. His tour led by Dr. LouAnn Woodward, vice chancellor for health affairs and School of Medicine dean, included the Guyton Research Center, the Conerly Critical Care Hospital, the Children's Cancer Clinic, and the adult and pediatric Emergency Departments.
For more than a decade, Lexington-area patients needing rehabilitative care close to home received therapy in cramped quarters at the University of Mississippi Medical Center Holmes County.
But as part of a $4 million renovation at the hospital, those needing physical, occupational or speech therapy are enjoying three private treatment rooms, an exercise area with state-of-the-art equipment, and a designated kid-friendly area where local students can receive that specialized care.
“It's been a great transformation, and a long time coming,” said Mike Lowe, UMMC Holmes County director of rehabilitative services. “We're having a great response. We have people who aren't getting therapy right now walking through, and they're just delighted that we have this if they ever need it.”
“A Healthier Mississippi” means more than just healing what ails our residents. It also means helping Mississippians adopt a healthier lifestyle. The Up in Farms Food Hub will play a part by providing easier access to quality, Mississippi-grown food through local grocers, restaurants and schools.
A number of interesting events is scheduled for the upcoming week at the Medical Center.