Wilkes County residents enjoy quick, convenient access to award-winning care at two local hospitals: Wake Forest Baptist Health – Wilkes Medical Center and Hugh Chatham Memorial Hospital. Both facilities are known for providing leading-edge health-care services that continue to expand and evolve with the community, which means patients never have to travel far to receive the latest and greatest in medical care.
Wake Forest Baptist Health – Wilkes Medical Center
Now managed by Winston-Salem-based Wake Forest Baptist Health, the facility formerly known as Wilkes Regional Medical Center became Wake Forest Baptist Health – Wilkes Medical Center on July 1, 2017.
The 130-bed regional medical center, located in North Wilkesboro, still offers the services the community has counted on for the past 60-plus years, but the facility’s alignment with Wake Forest Baptist means it now offers an expanded selection of treatments that patients once had to leave the county to obtain.
“This is a very exciting time for us,” says Gene Faile, Wilkes Medical Center president. “We’ve always had a deep commitment to offering the highest quality care, and now through our relationship with Wake Forest Baptist, we’ll continue to provide that level of care and even elevate it through increased access to specialty and subspecialty services that Wake Forest Baptist is bringing to Wilkes County.”
In addition to providing a full range of medical, surgical, rehabilitative, pathology, ophthalmology and wound care services, Wilkes Medical Center is home to a diagnostic center with a 64-slice CT scanner and a Toshiba Vantage Titan 1.5-Tesla MRI scanner with an oversized bore, which was designed with patients’ ultimate comfort in mind and is the only machine of its kind in the region. The facility is also the region’s only hospital to offer hyperbaric oxygen therapy, ideal for patients with slow-healing wounds, and it’s one of few community hospitals to offer video endoscopy services with PillCam® technology.
Wilkes Medical Center’s emergency department offers top-notch care, too, and following its 2013 expansion, it includes 28 beds. According to Faile, a telestroke robot enables Wake Forest Baptist neurologists to treat Wilkes Medical Center emergency department patients remotely, and 76 percent of emergency department patients are evaluated and treated within 180 minutes. The hospital was recognized for its outstanding emergency services in both 2015 and 2017, receiving two Women’s Choice Awards that named Wilkes Medical Center one of America’s best hospitals for emergency care.
“We are excited to be part of the Wilkes community,” says Mike Waid, senior vice president health system operations and integration, Wake Forest Baptist Health. “Wake Forest Baptist and Wilkes Medical Center have worked closely for many years to deliver excellent care, and we are now able to extend the level of services we offer.”
Hugh Chatham Memorial Hospital
Located in Elkin, Hugh Chatham Memorial Hospital is an 81-bed acute care facility that serves communities in the Yadkin Valley and foothills region of North Carolina. Founded in 1921, the private, not-for-profit hospital employs more than 840 people and is served by over 70 physicians representing 26 specialties and subspecialties.
HCMH received the 2017 Women’s Choice Award for patient safety, stroke care and emergency care, and the hospital was recognized among the top 2 percent of U.S. hospitals with under 100 beds by The SafeCare Group in 2016. In addition, the facility has maintained an “A” grade by The Leapfrog Group, which is a nonprofit watchdog organization that serves as a voice for health-care purchasers and is the nation’s premier advocate of hospital transparency.
HCMH is also known for its regional cancer center that provides radiation oncology and chemotherapy services in conjunction with the Comprehensive Cancer Center at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem. Other HCMH offerings include comprehensive cardiac care; neurology services; respiratory care; a sleep disorder lab; a state-of-the-art surgical unit with five new operating rooms and a cystoscopy suite; and a 24-room emergency department that includes a Quick ER, designed to serve patients with minor emergencies such as the flu or a simple laceration.
“Receiving our recent awards is a special honor for our employees, medical staff and volunteers at Hugh Chatham because every day we strive to deliver high quality, well-coordinated health care to patients that feels respectful, warm and caring to them,” says Paul Hammes, CEO of HCMH. “We also know that our patients appreciate easily accessible health care that fits their busy schedules, so we offer resources like same-day and extended hours appointments, express care and urgent care clinics, and a free nurse advice telephone number.”