Officials with Erlanger Murphy Medical Center announced on Friday that the hospital is changing its name to Erlanger Western Carolina Hospital.
In an unveiling ceremony Friday morning, hospital CEO Mark Kimball told a crowd of elected officials, area residents and civic leaders that, “Our new name, Erlanger Western Carolina Hospital, more clearly reflects our broadening reach as well as our proud affiliation with the Erlanger Health System.”
In explaining the reason for renaming the 40-year-old health care facility Mr.
Kimball said, “Although our hospital is based in Murphy, over the years it has not only grown in size and scope, but we now provide medical services in surrounding areas like Andrews and Hayesville.” The Erlanger CEO also said the new name was the result of a strategic planning process and because employees, physicians and members of the community felt strongly the current name was too narrow-focused. “Everyone wanted a name that more accurately reflected our region and the various communities we serve.”
During his announcement, Mr. Kimball praised the hospital’s affiliation with the Erlanger Health System that was finalized last April. “By joining the Erlanger family of hospitals, we have gained the expertise, knowledge and resources that come with partnering with a nationally acclaimed health system,” he said. “Today we are anchored by a leading academic medical center with seven hospitals, six Life Force air ambulances and the 10th largest public health care system in the United States.”
On Thursday, employees of the newly-named hospital were given T-shirts with the new Erlanger Western Carolina Hospital logo during a special celebration event and on Friday employees gathered in front of the first sign bearing their hospital’s new name. Joining Mr. Kimball during Friday’s announcement at the Tri-County Community College were hospital Chief of Staff Dr. Thomas Clayton, Cherokee County Commissioner C.B. McKinnon and Barbara Hughes with the Murphy City Council.