Florence looks to add more doctors to the area

FLORENCE, SOUTH CAROLINA (WMBF) - Florence is focused on building its medical community. Students from the University of South Carolina toured both McLeod and Carolinas Hospital to possibly look at educational opportunities for their 3rd and 4thyear of medical education.

"We are proud to have you here I think you will find that this is a community on the move," said Mayor Stephen Wukela.

"We're definitely in a limbo trying to decide how many students to we pull in, to how many students do we put out and are those students we are putting out –are they going into primary care or going into high need areas," said Harrison Smith.

Harrison Smith is just one of the dozens of students that toured McLeod Regional andCarolinas Hospital Friday.

In presentations, both medical facilities showed the students what they could offer them if they decide to begin their 3rd year of education in the area.

"Being able to come here and do some rotations absolutely," Smith commented. "I think there is a lot of emotion in class to be able to come down here and be able to work with attending doctors."

On tours through McLeod and Carolinas, students took a look at an array of facilities and met some of the doctors they may get a chance to work with.

While McLeod currently has a medical education program running for students, next fall will be the first time Carolinas has a regular medical program.

"We hope that they will see the highlights of both hospitals," said Dr. William Hester

For the most part the students that toured the medical facilities today are excited the Florence Community is so open to helping them further their careers.

"There is a drive to come back to South Carolina,  staying South Carolina or come back to South Carolina and return to communities like this, that you know you're going to constantly be working your are going to constantly being doing what you set out to do which is help the people," Harrison Smith.

The city hopes students who decide to study in this area will stay and practice medicine here in the Pee Dee.

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