Officials from Pikeville Medical Center (PMC) and the University of Pikeville (UPIKE) announced on Thursday, June 21 the entering of an agreement that will have a significant impact on the health, well-being and economic development of Eastern Kentucky and Central Appalachia. PMC Chief Executive Officer Donovan Blackburn and UPIKE President Burton J. Webb, Ph.D., signed a memorandum of cooperation outlining collaborative efforts between the two organizations. The memorandum highlights initiatives such as moving toward the inclusion of the City of Pikeville in the World Health Organization’s Healthy Cities, creating healthcare and educational programs, pursuing cooperative funding opportunities, collaborating on research projects, exploring the development of infrastructure, working with government officials to focus on the region’s health, cooperating on professional development opportunities for employees and holding joint leadership meetings.
Leadership from PMC and UPIKE agree that collaborating closely will have a lasting, positive impact on those living in the City of Pikeville and Central Appalachia. “The cooperative agreement is not only important to Pikeville Medical Center and the University of Pikeville, but it is extremely important to the area we serve,” said Blackburn. “As two of Eastern Kentucky’s largest drivers of the economy, health care and education, having a cooperative effort in place will brighten the future of our entire region.” Webb stated, “A hospital that is growing and accomplishing great things and a university that has been innovative over the last 125 years creates a wonderful opportunity for collaboration. At the heart of the Memorandum of Cooperation lies a great synergy between the hospital and the university. Moving forward, together, in the same direction will have a positive impact on our region for years to come.”