Phoebe Sumter receives $200K for improvements through state program

Phoebe Sumter's mission is to improve the quality of life mentally and physically.
Published: Jan. 13, 2023 at 9:18 PM EST
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AMERICUS, Ga. (WALB) - Phoebe Sumter Medical Center is making a number of improvements inside their hospital after receiving a $200,000 pledge.

Over the last three years from 2017-2020, the Georgia Heart Program has made new additions. One new addition is the Cardiac Rehabilitation.

The Georgia Heart Program is a state income tax fund for hospitals in rural communities. It provides funding for advancements that can help save lives. Services include new equipment and quality care.

“We focus on the things in our emergency room, our maternity services, surgical services, and our medical-surgical departments. Our outpatient department programs that are clearly needed by our program,” Carlyle Walton, chief executive officer of Phoebe Sumter Medical Center, said.

The mission for Phoebe Sumter is “improving the quality of life mentally, physically.” The Georgia Heart Program allows them to maintain their mission and serve those in the community.

“The program just continues to grow based on the growing need for cardiology support. We have one full-time cardiologist and a cardiology nurse practitioner on our campus. We just signed our second cardiologist, because the need is there. Cardiac Rehab. is an example of a program that meets the needs of the community,” Walton said.

The Georgia Heart Program provides financial assistance to 55 rural hospitals, including Phoebe Sumter. This program will help improve facilities, technology and other services.

Rural communities are faced with challenges and access to resources. The Georgia Heart Program is aimed at eliminating barriers to make it possible to purchase updated technology.

One area of improvement at Phoebe Sumter is labor and delivery. They’ve upgraded their infant abduction system, a new cardiac rehab and a bassinet.

“Our next two major projects we are considering is upgrading our MRI unit that is 14 years old. And that’s a $1.8 million project. We are considering supporting our surgeons and acquiring a surgical robot,” Walton.

One new project that will take $1.8 million is adding robotic surgeons. Phoebe Sumter hopes to...
One new project that will take $1.8 million is adding robotic surgeons. Phoebe Sumter hopes to add this expansion in the future.(Source: WALB)

The Georgia Heart Program is quick to respond to community feedback. This request was made possible due to the funding and only took one day.

“I’m just letting you know I’m making this decision to add ESPN to our cable package. His answer was ‘Go Dawgs.’ That was his response. That just speaks to the community commitment, because that was a patient satisfier or ‘dissatifer’ for the families staying with the patients,” Walton said.

The Georgia Heart Program continues to serve those in Sumter County. The hospital plans to expand its services with technology advancements.