Harris Regional, Swain Community Hospitals Host State’s Top Healthcare Leaders

November 16, 2016

Harris Regional Hospital and Swain Community Hospital, both of which are part of Duke LifePoint Healthcare, were honored to host an October visit by Eugene Washington, MD, Chancellor for Health Affairs for Duke University and President and CEO of Duke University Health System.  

During his visit to the Harris campus in Sylva, N.C., Dr. Washington joined in an informal discussion around delivering high-quality, innovative healthcare services close to home for western North Carolina, the driving force behind Duke LifePoint Healthcare. Also participating in the discussion were Steve Heatherly, CEO of Harris Regional Hospital and Swain Community Hospital; David Belcher, Chancellor of Western Carolina University; Don Tomas, President of Southwestern Community College; Representative Joe Sam Queen (U.S. House District 119); Brian McMahan, chairman of the Jackson County commissioners; and a number of community leaders.

“The conversation was relevant and engaging,” said Heatherly. “Our candid and detailed discussion involved everything from the need to take a community approach to reducing readmissions to how we can work together to solve challenges within the behavioral health system in our state. We also talked about how we can best manage population health in our region, as well as the critical need to create broad access to education for our community members so we can begin addressing the social determinants of health outcomes.”

Heatherly continued, “It is through these types of discussions that we are able to dig deep into the issues that are affecting our communities, and look for ways to improve overall health and well-being. We are so appreciative for our partnership with Duke LifePoint Healthcare and to Dr. Washington for participating in this discussion, as well as the other experts who so readily gave their time and energy to this important conversation.”

This discussion supports Harris Regional Hospital and Swain Community Hospital’s efforts to collaborate with community partners as they work to advance their mission of Making Communities Healthier. The hospitals continue to build on longstanding community partnerships with local health departments, Western Carolina University, Southwestern Community College, area school systems, and advocacy agencies.