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Southwest Mississippi Regional Medical Center in McComb is part of the Southwest Health System.

Southwest Health System, UMMC announce health care affiliation

Kevin Cook is chief executive officer of the UMMC Health System.

Dr. Charles O’Mara is UMMC associate vice chancellor for clinical affairs.

JACKSON —  A new affiliation between Southwest Health System in McComb and the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson will strengthen and expand health care services in McComb and southwest Mississippi.

The affiliation brings the advanced health care offerings of Mississippi’s only academic medical center to Southwest Mississippi Regional Medical Center, a 165-bed, progressive hospital with a medical staff of nearly 100 physicians representing 12 medical specialties.

The working relationship allows 1,200-employee Southwest Health System to enhance its strong medical staff, expand its health care services and improve access to treatment through UMMC’s medical outreach. The agreement allows UMMC and Southwest to explore future research and education opportunities.

Expanded access to state-of-the-art care will enable more McComb-area residents to stay home for treatment, said Kevin Cook, chief executive officer of the UMMC Health System.

“As health care resources continue to shrink, collaboration among providers is essential,” Cook said. “We are excited about our affiliation with SMRMC and look forward to working with the hospital and community to ensure that region’s health needs are addressed for many years to come.”

Dr. Kevin Richardson

Norman M. Price is chief executive officer of Southwest Health System.

“For several months, our board, medical staff and administrative team have worked together on this affiliation process,” said Norman M. Price, Southwest Health System chief executive officer. “Our goal was to find the best fit for not only our hospital and employees, but also for our patients and our community.

“We feel this affiliation with UMMC meets our present as well as our future expectations.”

In addition to Southwest Mississippi Regional Medical Center, Southwest Health System encompasses 12 specialty clinics near the hospital including the Cardiovascular Institute of Mississippi, Mississippi Cancer Institute, Norman M. Price Ambulatory Surgery Center, St. Luke Home Health & Hospice, Digestive Diseases Center, Southwest Center for Rehabilitation, and Southwest Regional Women’s Center Maternity Suites.

The system also includes three family practice clinics, two in McComb and one in Lawrence County, and the nonprofit Lawrence County Hospital, a 25-bed critical access hospital in Monticello.

“This partnership will enable us to provide exceptional care to the patients and families that we serve throughout our community,” said Dr. Kevin Richardson, Southwest Mississippi Regional Medical Center chief medical officer.

The affiliation with Southwest Mississippi Regional Medical Center is one of many collaborative business relationships UMMC has, in a variety of formats, with hospitals and other health care entities in Mississippi and other states.

“This affiliation with Southwest Mississippi Regional Medical Center allows UMMC to broaden and strengthen our continued efforts to collaborate with health systems across the state and the region, for the ultimate benefit of the patients we all serve,” said Dr. Charles O’Mara, associate vice chancellor for clinical affairs.

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