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UNC School of Medicine Announces Expansion of Asheville Campus

Friday, October 22nd, 2010

ASHEVILLE, NC – Leaders from the University of North Carolina (UNC) School of Medicine announced an expansion of the school’s Asheville Regional Campus, which operates in collaboration with Mission Health System and the Mountain Area Health Education Center (MAHEC).

“In these tough economic times, I am pleased that we maintained our commitment to caring for the people of our state by making this expansion a reality,” said William L. Roper, MD, MPH, dean of the UNC School of Medicine. “We are seeing an increase in patient volume and a decrease in the number of health care providers. By expanding the School’s presence in Asheville, we will improve our capacity to train more physicians, especially rural and primary care physicians, for which the need is most urgent.”

The Asheville campus class size will increase from the current six students to up to 10 next year, with a long-term goal of expanding to 20 students per class.

Mission Health System President and CEO Ronald A. Paulus, MD, MBA, also announced that Mission will commit $7 million to purchase the MAHEC Bridge Building on Biltmore Avenue and transform it into a dedicated center for all medical education activities on the hospital campus. The building will become home to the UNC School of Medicine, the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy, future hospital-based residencies and other potential collaborations with UNC in research, patient care and teaching.

“Mission is proud to continue our long-standing partnership with UNC, MAHEC and our dedicated physician faculty to help train the next generation of physicians and other health professionals here in Western North Carolina,” said Paulus. “We see this as critical to Mission’s responsibility to advance the long-term health and well-being of this region. In addition to contributing to the health of our people, this expansion will also contribute to the health of our economy by continuing to cultivate a vibrant healthcare sector that spurs jobs and business growth.”

Teck Penland, Ph.D., president and CEO of MAHEC, commented that the expansion of the Asheville Regional Campus “is a significant move forward for the entire Western North Carolina region, as it will help to ensure that we have an adequate supply of physicians to meet the increasing healthcare needs of our growing, aging population.”

The Asheville Regional Campus, launched in 2008, provides clinical education for third- and fourth-year medical students at Mission Hospital. Currently 10 medical students are enrolled at the Asheville campus, working closely with practicing Mission physicians as their primary teachers and mentors. The campus utilizes an innovative patient-centered curriculum which is now being replicated across the state.

UNC Asheville’s Adam Reagan Wins First Erskine Bowles Service Award

Friday, October 22nd, 2010

ASHEVILLE, NC – The UNC Asheville Information Technology Services applications analyst has made philanthropy central in his life, despite a cardiac diagnosis that would sideline most people.

It was this ability to overcome adversity combined with an unwavering commitment to volunteerism that earned Reagan the University of North Carolina Staff Assembly’s first Erskine Bowles Service AwardAdam Reagan (center) receives the award from (L-R) UNC Asheville Chancellor Anne Ponder, UNC President Erskine Bowles and Staff Assembly President Kelley Eaves-Boykin. He was recognized at a special ceremony in Chapel Hill on October 12. UNC President Erskine Bowles, for whom the award was named, and UNC Asheville Chancellor Anne Ponder presented Reagan with the award.

The UNC Staff Assembly, composed of staff members from all 17 UNC system campuses, UNC Public Television, North Carolina Arboretum and General Administration. It works to improve communications and morale while increasing efficiency and productivity in campus operations. Reagan serves as communications officer for the organization.

“Adam is a humbling person,” said Chris Miller, UNC Asheville health and safety officer, who serves on the assembly with Reagan. “Every time I am around him, I find out something amazing that he’s done.”

Those amazing things didn’t stop when Reagan got some bad news last spring. While running a 5K race, Reagan lost consciousness and suffered from puzzling short-term memory loss. Doctors were baffled and ordered tests, then more tests. Finally, they discovered a misrouted artery that often spells sudden cardiac death, but after additional consultations they advised Reagan that he could resume his strenuous running and exercising routines. While some might take such a diagnosis as a reason to scale back on life, Reagan did just the opposite.

Since the diagnosis, Reagan was selected from the National Bone Marrow Registry as a match for an anonymous 43-year-old with leukemia. With clearance from his doctors, Reagan travelled to Washington, D.C., to undergo a peripheral blood stem cell donation, saving the life of a stranger. He continued working via computer from his hospital bed, participating in a video conference with his departmental colleagues and staying on top of e-mails.

His generosity of spirit goes on. Reagan is co-chair of the American Cancer Society’s Relay For Life event in Biltmore Park. He also served as facilitator for the 2010 Relay For Life South Atlantic Division’s National Focus on Leadership Conference. Earlier this year, he was a member of the statewide Have-A-Heart Campaign committee, which collected 11,000 pounds of food for hunger relief charities, and more than 400 pairs of shoes for Haiti earthquake victims. In his Fletcher neighborhood, Reagan serves on the homeowners’ association advisory board and is the chair of the architectural review committee. On campus, he has served on the Chancellor’s Staff Advisory Committee, Transportation Committee, Excellence in Public Service Committee and State Employees Combined Campaign Committee. He is also a regular blood platelet donor.

In what little free time he has, Reagan teaches indoor cycling (spinning) classes three times per week and takes courses toward a master’s degree—his second—in project management from Western Carolina.

“It’s a busy schedule. I usually eat dinner around 9 p.m. and go to bed to get ready to do it all again,” Reagan admits. “But the things I do, I do because I enjoy them. My goal in life is to humbly help humanity.”

UNC Asheville Hosts “Jammin at the Justice” Friday Evening

Monday, October 11th, 2010

ASHEVILLE,NC – Friday evening brings “Jammin’ at the Justice” and the first look at UNC Asheville men’s and women’s basketball teams. The event features scrimmages by both teams, a slam-dunk contest, the “Sawbones vs. Jawbones” game, a kids game, and a 3-point shooting contest. The Bulldogs’ John Williams will defend his slam-dunk title, and one lucky fan will have a chance to hit a 3-pointer for a $10,000 prize. Doors to the Justice Center open at 5 p.m. and the action begins at 6. Admission, posters and schedule cards will all be free and fans will have a chance to meet the Bulldog players in person.

At 7:30 p.m., Asheville-area doctors and lawyers will renew their rivalry in the annual “Sawbones vs. Jawbones” game for charity. Instead of squaring off in court, the attorneys and physicians will meet on the court in this light-hearted family-friendly game led by UNC Asheville’s coaches. There is no charge to see the game, but donations will be gladly accepted, benefitting programs of the Buncombe County Medical Society and Pisgah Legal Services.

Asheville Doctors to Support Haitian Disaster Relief Drive

Tuesday, February 23rd, 2010

ASHEVILLE, NC – As recovery efforts continue in the wake of Haiti’s most destructive natural disaster, Asheville doctors are participating in recovery relief efforts by supporting a medical supply drive, from Feb. 13 to Feb. 27.

The medical supply drive will aid in the disaster relief efforts of a team of doctors, nurses, and therapists from Mission Hospital and the Batey Relief Alliance and its NY-based partner medical group, the Association of Haitian Physicians Abroad (AMHE), who will be headed to Haiti on a mission trip from March 27th through April 5th to provide medical assistance to thousands of Haitians who are in desperate need.

“As rescue and recovery efforts come to a close and people’s attention may be waning, providing continuing medical assistance is of paramount importance to combat the spread of disease and to bolster the overall well-being of Haitians who will prepare to rebuild their community,” said the American-trained Haitian physician, Dr. Raymond Thertulien, a MD with Cancer Centers of North Carolina-Asheville medical practice and volunteer international medical director of the humanitarian aid organization, Batey Relief Alliance. “As a new resident to Asheville, I’m humbled by the outpouring of support and look forward to working together to make a difference in the lives of the people in Haiti.”

DONATIONS: Donation barrels will be placed at the front of the stores from Feb. 13 to Feb 27 at the Ingles Markets at 29 Tunnel Rd. in Asheville and at 140 Weaver Blvd. in Weaverville.

Medical supplies needed are:

– Alcohol Bandages

– Gauze Pain relievers (Tylenol, Ibuprofen/Advil, Aleve)

– Band-aid Soft casts (Wrists, Elbow, Arms, Knees)

– Topical antibiotics Antibiotics

– Antifugal creams

– Antifungals

– Antimalarials

– Antiparasitics

– Antihypertensives

– Steroid creams

– Antiacids Diabetic medications

– Rehydration salts

– Antidiarrheal IV sets

For those of you, who wish to make a cash donation to support the travel and shipment costs of the mission, please mail your tax-deductible checks payable to Batey Relief Alliance, P.O. Box 300565, Brooklyn, N.Y. 11230.

,p>Donations can also be made securely at the website: www.bateyrelief.org with the subtext: Haiti Relief Campaign.