VC Notes Archive Office of the Vice Chancellor
Friday, June 5, 2015

UMMC and MPB: Partners for a Healthier Mississippi

Today I want to talk about Mississippi Public Broadcasting.

Lots of people know MPB through its radio and TV programming.  I, for one, am a big Downton Abbey fan, and proud of it!   

What I also want you to know is that UMMC has a growing partnership with MPB through radio and TV programs that collectively are known as Southern Remedy.

More about that in a minute, but first I want to talk about how much we have in common with MPB.

They are a statewide resource, as are we.  They see their primary mission as education, as do we.  And they have committed themselves to using the tools at their disposal - in their case, broadcasting - to empower the state's citizens to lead healthier lives.

We are natural allies, and those aligned interests come together in Southern Remedy.

A call-in radio show on wide-ranging health topics, Southern Remedy first aired in 2005.  With its signature blues guitar theme music, the show is almost solely the creation of our own Dr. Richard deShazo, better known by his on-air handle as "Dr. Rick."

Dr. Rick is also the former chair of the UMMC Department of Medicine and Billy S. Guyton Distinguished Professor of Medicine and Pediatrics.  With his breadth of medical knowledge, he has spent an hour every Wednesday for nearly a decade taking questions from listeners all across the state on whatever might be ailing them.  And he's done it with sensitivity and compassion and humor and - like any good teacher - a steadfast desire to enlighten and build understanding.

In 2011, we expanded our relationship with MPB by taking Southern Remedy to TV.  With Dr. deShazo as host, the documentary-style program explores some of Mississippi's toughest health challenges, including obesity, teen pregnancy and the interplay of race and medicine in our state. 

As with radio, the quality of these TV programs has always been exceptional.  Just last month, for example, a show on controversies surrounding childhood immunization received an Emmy nomination for the Southeast region.

Last August, Southern Remedy expanded again.  The radio program grew from one show per week to five, each with a separate UMMC host.

Including Dr. Rick's "open mic" show on Wednesday, the lineup includes:

  • "Healthy and Fit" with Dr. Deborah Minor, Department of Medicine, on Mondays


  • "Relatively Speaking" with Dr. Susan Buttross, Department of Pediatrics, on Tuesdays, discussing issues associated with human behavior, especially in children



  • "Kids and Teens" with Dr. Jimmy Stewart, Departments of Pediatrics and Medicine, on Thursdays



  • "Women's Health" with Dr. Michelle Owens, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, on Fridays


I have not heard many of the shows, but I have it on good authority that the hosts are doing an amazing job.  Debbie, Jimmy and Michelle are new to radio, but Susan's show has been a staple at MPB for several years.  Along with Dr. Rick, they all come across as pros, and the ratings reflect it. 

If you're like me and it's tough to tune in at 11 a.m. each weekday, you can find all the shows -- TV and radio -- archived online at If you'd like to listen live while sitting at your desk, click this link to catch the show broadcast live online.

In addition to programs on such stimulating topics as autism, breastfeeding, body image, dealing with guilt, and summertime injuries, you'll find an abundance of tools Dr. deShazo has assembled over the years to support healthy living.

We're fortunate to have a partner in MPB that shares many of the same values that we hold dear.  I'm so proud of Southern Remedy and our talented, dedicated hosts who are representing UMMC's caring spirit to listeners all across our state.   It's one more way we're going to achieve A Healthier Mississippi.

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