Contact: Heather Woolwine
May 24, 2016
CHARLESTON, SC – The Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) issued its 2016 MUSC Healthy Communities Award to Senator Hugh K. Leatherman Sr. on May 23. Leatherman received the award for his consistent advocacy of higher education and health care collaboration for the betterment of South Carolina.
The MUSC Healthy Communities Award is presented to an individual, group or organization who works to target specific community health issues, demonstrate leadership, and/or collaborate in ways with MUSC that bring about innovative access to the state’s only comprehensive academic medical center.
“Senator Leatherman demonstrates everything that this award represents,” said David J. Cole, M.D., FACS, MUSC president. “In order for MUSC to lead health innovation for the lives we touch, we know that external advocates are critical to expanding our reach and impact for quality health care. We are grateful for the unwavering role that Senator Leatherman has served as it relates to changing what’s possible for the health of our communities.”
Senator Leatherman led the charge in 2010 to pass a state allocation for the MUSC Hollings Cancer Center, allowing for advanced tobacco-related cancer research. And together with Senator Thomas Alexander, he spearheaded the effort in the senate to establish a statewide telemedicine network to provide specialty care to communities throughout South Carolina, particularly focusing on improving delivery of health care for those suffering from strokes.
The senator has also demonstrated leadership on behalf of the state’s citizens by supporting a state allocation of $25 million for the new MUSC Shawn Jenkins Children’s Hospital, which will serve children and families statewide.
This is the second year that MUSC has issued the MUSC Healthy Communities Award, with last year’s award presented to North Charleston Mayor Keith Summey. Summey received the award for his role in working with the North Charleston City Council, Children’s Hospital Advisory Board and MUSC Health leadership to facilitate the donation of a $4 million land parcel that will improve his community’s access to comprehensive, academic medical care in their own backyard.
Founded in 1824 in Charleston, The Medical University of South Carolina is the oldest medical school in the South. Today, MUSC continues the tradition of excellence in education, research, and patient care. MUSC educates and trains more than 3,000 students and 700 residents in six colleges (Dental Medicine, Graduate Studies, Health Professions, Medicine, Nursing, and Pharmacy), and has nearly 14,000 employees, including approximately 1,500 faculty members. As the largest non-federal employer in Charleston, the university and its affiliates have collective annual budgets in excess of $2.4 billion, with an annual economic impact of more than $3.8 billion and annual research funding in excess of $250 million. MUSC operates a 700-bed medical center, which includes a nationally recognized Children's Hospital, the Ashley River Tower (cardiovascular, digestive disease, and surgical oncology), Hollings Cancer Center (a National Cancer Institute-designated center), Level I Trauma Center, Institute of Psychiatry, and the state’s only transplant center. In 2017, for the third consecutive year, U.S. News & World Report named MUSC Health the number one hospital in South Carolina. For more information on academic programs or clinical services, visit musc.edu. For more information on hospital patient services, visit MUSChealth.org.