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Scott Street, CEO of the Medical Center of South Arkansas, shared his vision on making El Dorado a destination for health care at the annual Go Red luncheon.

Heart disease is the leading cause of death in Arkansas. The Go Red event is put on each year to spread awareness and education on heart disease.

Street was the keynote speaker at the luncheon, which took place at the Griffin Music Hall and was presented by the Heart and Vascular Institute at MCSA.

Street’s vision is to focus on three aspects: quality, service and innovation. “Our quality measures are good, in fact very good in some areas, but can be and will be better,” Street said. “Our service is very good, but it will be great and our innovation will be game changing.

“If we improve in those three areas and I should say as we improve in those three areas, we will become a destination for health care,” he said.

One significant objective is to reduce “out migration”, which means keeping people from having to travel to different hospitals in other cities. Street said over the decades, there has been a lot of out migration and his goal is to keep the residents of El Dorado home.

He talked about services that will be coming to MCSA, including a future partnership that will help strengthen their services and keep more residents “home for high quality health care.”

Street also announced the MCSA is in the beginning stages of a multimillion dollar renovation that will update the hospital. The renovation could last up to three years and will be broken down into four stages.

“If you come by our campus you will see supplies stacked in different areas of our parking lots,” Street said. “We are excited about this renovation project. We hope we can finish it sooner than three years, but it’s extensive.”

Part of the renovation project will be bringing behavioral health services to MCSA. The services will include psychiatric services, general psych unit and a detox program.

Street discussed the possibility of bringing back the Area Health Education Center (AHEC) to El Dorado. The service was moved to Magnolia from El Dorado in 2013.

“Our intent is not to take it back from Magnolia, but to add another program very similar to what we had here in the past,” Street said.

He also mentioned a program they will be announcing sometime in the next eight weeks that will benefit women and children “tremendously.”

The hospital is aggressively recruiting doctors for every specialty there is. “I don’t think there’s a service and a specialty we are not recruiting for,” Street said.

Street addressed rumors concerning the hospital’s dress code, saying that there will be a more professional look throughout the organization. He said that it will take several weeks to implement the dress code.

El Dorado Mayor Frank Hash made a proclamation, stating that Feb. 20, 2018 is proclaimed as Union County wear red day. Hash encouraged all citizens to work together to promote and improve the heath of all men and women in the community.

He encouraged the citizens to take action in increasing awareness and an overall understanding of heart disease.

Christine Street was named Go Red Honorary Chair at the event.

Mike Morton and Judith Fussell both shared their heart stories in hope to inspire and encourage people to consider heart healthy lifestyles.

Staff from MCSA set up stations which offered different screenings to attendees, including blood pressure, cholesterol and others.

MCSA is south Arkansas’ only Accredited Chest Pain Center, has a level III Trauma Designation and a Accredited Cardiac Rehabilitation Center.

Kaitlyn Rigdon can be reached at 870-862-6611 or krigdon@eldoradonews.com.

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