Davis said the original Harbin Hospital in downtown Rome was the first hospital outside of New York, Boston or San Francisco to offer a specialized radium treatment for cancer back in 1919.
“This desire for excellence and having the best for Rome and Floyd County goes way, way back,” Davis said.
In 1921 the American College of Surgeons, when it initially developed certification procedures, sent out a group to Georgia where only three hospitals received their certification.
“Only three — Grady Hospital, Georgia Baptist and the Harbin Hospital — so even they recognized this outstanding hospital,” Davis said.
The Georgia Society of Clinical Oncologists has named the Harbin cancer program the best in Georgia each of the last two years, the only two years the award has been given out.
Davis also specifically pointed out Dr. Ryland Scott’s bariatric surgery program.
“Ryland Scott’s numbers in bariatric surgery are the best. I said the best, number one in the nation, with the fewest complications,” Davis told members of the Rome Exchange Club during last week’s meeting.
Responding to questions from Exchange leaders, Davis said, “I am not afraid of health care reform. I think the Harbin Clinic is in the sweet spot because we’ve been doing what is going to be required for the future. We’ve been doing it for 10 or 15 years.”
He said he feels that Harbin will thrive under whatever is finally worked out in Washington.
“I think we can improve health care without taking services away from people, but it’s got to be better coordinated health, it can’t be episodic care,” Davis said.
Harbin has also been very involved in the planning to bring third- and fourth-year medical students to Rome at the new Northwest Georgia campus of the Georgia Health Sciences University at Georgia Highlands College.
“Where you train, a lot of time, dictates where you live. When a physician trains in Rome and sees the medical community, maybe sees what Harbin Clinic has, as they go through their training they’re thinking about coming back, and so it really can do nothing but help us,” he said.
He also said that one thing that needs to change is health care’s traditional focus toward the sick.
“What has to happen is that we have to be involved with the wellness side. It’s not just a medical issue, it’s a community issue,” Davis said. “The reason people in Denver and other places in the country have better statistics, it’s a culture of exercising, it’s a culture of diet. You go to the Napa Valley you don’t see any heavy people, the only people that are heavy are visiting.”