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June 19, 2024

SCHA Out and About, Vol. 11: Lobbying in Washington, Supply Chain Meeting in Myrtle Beach, and EMS Partnership

Since my last installment of Out and About, I’ve enjoyed being with many healthcare leaders across South Carolina and the country. Here’s a recap of my recent travels.

In April I was invited by Phil Feisal and Billy Webster to speak to their Health Policy class at Wofford. This is always one of the highlights of my year!

Thornton Kirby with two of his daughter's sorority sisters at Wofford
After-class photo with two of my daughter’s sorority sisters at Wofford

Later in April SCHA hosted a collaborative learning session around the Medicaid Quality Achievement Program (QAP). This meeting was well attended and an important step on our continuing journey to improve the quality of care for our patients.

QAP Learning Session
QAP learning session attendees

SCHA leaders also attended the AHA Annual Meeting in DC, where we paid a visit to Capitol Hill to advocate for FEMA funding and the SAVE Act.

SCHA Delegation in US Senate Office Building
Katie Titus, Allan Stalvey, Tod Augsburger, and Gayle Resetar walk to a meeting with Senator Tim Scott’s staff
SCHA Delegation Outside Senator Gra
Thornton Kirby joins the group for a photo outside Senator Lindsey Graham’s offices

In May I attended a celebration of our state’s EMS community at the Fairgrounds in Columbia. My friend and colleague Henry Lewis, Executive Director of the SC EMS Association, organized this event to recognize the important life-saving work done every day across our state by EMTs and Paramedics.

EMS trucks from various SC communities
EMS trucks from various SC communities
Spartanburg County’s Mass Evacuation Bus
Spartanburg County’s Mass Evacuation Bus
Tour of EMS Mass Evacuation Bus
Robby Golightly of Spartanburg County EMS shows Thornton the interior of the Mass Evacuation bus

Also in May I attended the annual conference of our hospital supply chain professionals in Myrtle Beach. At the conference, I was honored to join Jeannette Andrews, Dean of the USC College of Nursing, on a panel exploring ways that nurses and supply chain professionals can better collaborate to improve bedside care.

Supply Chain Leaders at Meeting
Supply Chain Leaders Meeting in Myrtle Beach, SC

Last week I attended the AHA’s Regional Policy Board meeting in Orlando with a strong group of leaders from SCHA. We heard updates on politics in Washington, election forecasts, the aftermath of the Change Healthcare cyberattack, health plan accountability, and efforts to improve access to maternal care in rural communities.

SCHA Board Leaders having Dinner
Gayle Resetar, Tod Augsburger, Bruce Holstien and Thornton Kirby at dinner in Orlando

I look forward to seeing many of you over the summer as I continue to travel the state!