Tag Archives: Charles Howell

Many outpatient surgeries will move to Evans

Georgia Regents Medical Center invests in outpatient surgery center with University Health Care System

AUGUSTA, Ga. – Georgia Regents Medical Center has purchased a 30-percent ownership in the Surgery Center of Columbia County. This 21,000-square-foot outpatient day surgery facility in Evans opened in 2007 as a joint venture between University Health Resources, Inc., the for-profit corporation of University Health Care System, and more than a dozen board-certified physicians and podiatrists.

“We are pleased to be able to partner with Georgia Regents Medical Center in an effort to help them increase their outpatient surgery capacity and better serve their patients in need of surgery,” explained James Davis, President/CEO of University Health Care System. “It makes sense for both parties to maximize the use of existing facilities.”

LogosUH.GRMCRecent advancements in technology, particularly in minimally invasive surgery, have increased the demand for outpatient surgical care, because it can benefit patients through shorter operations, fewer complications and quicker recoveries, according to industry reports.

Located on University’s longstanding Evans Campus on North Belair Road, the Joint Commission-accredited Surgery Center of Columbia County offers a broad array of outpatient procedures performed by highly skilled and compassionate physicians and staff in four spacious surgical suites using state-of-the-art technology. Some of the surgical services offered at the center include general, colorectal, ENT, and GI surgeries.

“We’re excited about this new collaboration with University Hospital,” said Dr. Charles G. Howell, Chairman of the Department of Surgery at Georgia Regents Medical Center and Professor of Surgery and Pediatrics at Georgia Regents University’s Medical College of Georgia. “We have highly qualified surgeons performing some very complex and lengthy operations in our hospital operating rooms, and that doesn’t always mix well with ambulatory surgical care. Moving more outpatient surgeries to Columbia County will help us alleviate some of the space concerns we’re experiencing so that we can meet the needs of our patients and families more quickly and efficiently at both locations. Additionally, this partnership is another great opportunity for us to work with University Hospital to make Augusta a medical destination.”

About University
University Health Care System is anchored by the 581-bed, not-for-profit University Hospital, founded in 1818. The main campus has expanded to include the Heart & Vascular Institute, an Outpatient Center and office buildings that house more than 600 private practice and employed physicians, and various treatment centers. University has the largest primary care and prompt care network in the region and also includes University Hospital McDuffie in Thomson, Ga., as well as numerous medical campuses in two states, Brandon Wilde Continuing Care Retirement Community and two extended care facilities. University is the only hospital in the region to have earned Magnet designation for nursing excellence, and has been named the National Research Corporation Consumer Choice Award winner for overall quality and image every year since 1999.

About GRMC
Georgia Regents Medical Center is a not-for-profit providing clinical operations as a cooperative organization for Georgia Regents University. The 478-bed Medical Center includes a Critical Care Center, housing the region’s only Level I trauma center ; the 154-bed Children’s Hospital of Georgia, providing the highest level of pediatric critical care and neonatal intensive care; and more than 80 outpatient clinics that provide primary and specialty care throughout the state. Georgia Regents physicians are consistently ranked among the nation’s best in both America’s Top Doctors® and Best Doctors in America.® Additionally, Children’s Hospital of Georgia was recently ranked as the nation’s highest performing children’s hospital in quality and safety by the University HealthSystem Consortium.

MCG Dean honors longtime pediatric surgeon and hospital administrator

A Medical College of Georgia graduate and pediatric surgeon, who chairs the Department of Surgery, and the longtime administrator of Phoebe Putney Health System, home of MCG’s first clinical campus, were honored Friday by Dr. Peter F. Buckley, Dean of MCG at Georgia Regents University.

Dr. Charles G. Howell
Dr. Charles G. Howell
Joel Wernick
Joel Wernick

Dr. Charles G. Howell, a 1973 graduate and advocate for children and families who has served as Chief of the MCG Section of Pediatric Surgery for more than 20 years and Chairman since 2011, received the Professionalism Award during Buckley’s May 1 State of the College Address. Joel Wernick, Phoebe’s President and CEO for more than a quarter of a century, received the Dean’s Community Advocate Award.

“Dr. Howell is an amazing advocate and consummate professional when it comes to the care of children and their families,” Buckley said. “In his more than 30 years as a faculty member, he has never swayed for even an instant from his core belief that our youngest patients deserve the absolute best.

“This year, as we celebrate the 10th anniversary of our Southwest Campus, based at Phoebe Putney in Albany, it is absolutely appropriate that we also celebrate the contributions of Mr. Wernick, a visionary CEO, both in his community and in the larger community,” Buckley said. “He, along with Phoebe’s physicians and staff, provide exceptional support to our students, and to our efforts to educate the next generation of physicians for Georgia and beyond.”

Howell helped plan and develop the Children’s Hospital of Georgia, which opened in 1998. He designed the facility’s operating rooms, and has served as Medical Director of Operative Services since the hospital opened. He is also Surgeon-in-Chief and Co-Medical Director of CHOG. Howell has co-directed the extracorporeal membrane oxygenation, or ECMO, program for children in respiratory failure at the children’s hospital and helped found the program in 1985 as one of the first in the nation.  Howell helped advocate bringing a Ronald McDonald House to Augusta in the 1980s, and he and his wife, along with Braye and Tori Boardman, co-chaired the fundraising campaign for the new house, which opened just steps away from CHOG in January.

“At the dedication of the new Ronald McDonald House, Mr. Boardman lauded Dr. Howell for being such a tremendous role model and noted how his leadership on behalf of this home-away-from-home for the families of sick children had supported an unprecedented philanthropic support from our physician community,” Buckley added. “Again, his commitment never stops. This weekend Dr. Howell and his wife. Debbie. are hosting the renewed Moretz Society, a gathering of MCG alumni surgeon leaders from across America in support of their alma mater.”

Wernick is consistently ranked by Georgia Trend magazine among the 100 most influential Georgians.  The Arkansas native is on the board of VHA-Georgia and a former board member of VHA, Inc., a national network of not-for-profit health care organizations; the Georgia Alliance of Community Hospitals; and  the Georgia Chamber of Commerce. He chairs the Southwest Georgia Alliance for Progress, a regional coalition to strengthen economic, educational, and cultural infrastructures that support the Marine Corp Logistics Base of Albany. He is a long-time Rotarian and Paul Harris Fellow.

The Southwest Campus is part of MCG’s regional campus network that has students living and learning across Georgia. The Albany-based campus has third- and fourth-year medical students working with physicians and hospitals throughout that quadrant of the state, including Albany, Tifton, Cordele, Valdosta, LaGrange, Americus, Thomasville, and Columbus.