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Williamson County Health Care Industry Keeps Community and Economy Healthy

High-quality health care keeps residents, economy strong

By Teree Caruthers on March 20, 2017

Franklin TN
Staff Photo

Access to high-quality health care often tops the list of amenities that attract relocating families and businesses. Williamson County’s major health care providers ensure residents have access to cutting-edge care and a growing roster of services close to home.

Franklin-based Williamson Medical Center offers a comprehensive menu of services, including cancer care, women’s health services and a fully accredited Chest Pain and Cardiology Center. The medical center’s cardiology department performs more than 1,000 procedures each year and has saved countless lives of patients who were able to receive effective and convenient care. Williamson Medical Center is also a leader in technology, employing the latest equipment, from surgical robotic tools to 3D mammography in its imaging center. Together with the Breast Health Center, the Imaging Center is a designated Breast Imaging Center of Excellence and has been ranked one of the top breast centers in the country.

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“We have recently undergone multiple expansion projects on our campus, which have resulted in us opening the county’s only dedicated children’s hospital. We expanded our operating rooms and added vascular and orthopaedic technology that allows us to continue to provide needed services to our growing community,” says Julie Miller, chief operating officer for Williamson Medical Center.  “Additionally, we have garnered several awards in the last year that we are extremely proud of, including a Carechex ranking in the top 10 percent in the state, region and nation for cancer care, orthopaedic surgeries, and overall hospital and medical care. These are all accomplishments we are very proud to bring to this community.”

Healthy Partnerships

Collaboration between the major providers has helped broaden the scope of services available to Williamson County residents. In 2015, Williamson Medical Center partnered with Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt to open a 75,000-square-foot facility dedicated to pediatric emergency and inpatient care. The new facility is the county’s first dedicated pediatric inpatient hospital and is staffed by Vanderbilt University Medical Center pediatric physicians and Williamson Medical Center nurses and clinicians, which means patients receive the best evidence-based care in the region.

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Williamson Medical Center and Vanderbilt University Medical Center also partnered to elevate the level of care offered at walk-in clinics throughout the county. VUMC operates more than 20 outpatient clinics throughout Williamson County, offering services ranging from dermatology to gynecology, oncology to orthopaedics. Both VUMC and St. Thomas Health offer cardiology services at Williamson Medical Center, and Brentwood-based TriStar Health operates a stand-alone emergency room in Spring Hill.

“We continually assess the needs of this community and will respond appropriately. We have continued to add primary care providers to our physician practice, Williamson Medical Group, to accommodate the growing number of people moving to this area,” says Paul Bolin, Williamson Medical Center’s chief financial officer. “Having a top-notch medical center right here in Williamson County enables this community to be competitive with larger markets that have multiple health care options.”

A Healthy Bottom Line

According to a 2014 study by the Nashville Health Care Council and the Business and Economic Research Center at Middle Tennessee State University, the health care industry contributes more than $38 billion to the Middle Tennessee economy. In Williamson County, the health care industry is helping drive major economic growth as some of the biggest names in health care –  among them Community Health Systems, HealthSpring, UnitedHealth Group, MedSolutions, Tivity Health Inc, Optum, Parallon Business Solutions, Medhost, Brookdale Senior Living and Medical Reimbursements of America –  have planted roots here. The industry employs more than 7,000 and accounts for half of the county’s top 20 employers.

Williamson County is a national hub for health care. From public and private hospital, tech and health services companies, the health care community in Williamson County continues to grow and be an incubator for transformation across the sector,” says Cindy Wakefield, vice president, corporate communications, for Tivity Health. “Health care is vital to economic development in Williamson County and across the country. There are endless opportunities to improve the lives of millions of people through research, quality care initiatives, transformative technology and collaborative IQ.”

Tivity Health Inc – formerly Healthways Inc. – is a well-being and wellness provider for employers, health plans and health systems and a staple in the Williamson County business community for years. The company recently merged its Population Health with Atlanta-based Sharecare.

Wakefield says one reason health care companies are choosing to locate in Williamson County is the community’s quality of life.

“We have the best of both worlds in Williamson County –  easy access to the Nashville International Airport and downtown Nashville, as well as some of the best public schools in the nation,” she says. “That’s vital in recruiting top talent.”

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