The New Year has always symbolized exciting things to me: new places, ideas, and opportunities for growth — in short, a time to start over. Being open to experiencing anything new means that we experience complex feelings, both positive and negative. These include excitement, possibility, uncertainty, and even fear.
Not unlike any of us, Angel Medical Center has evolved and adapted to changes in the community and healthcare in the 98 years since its founding. Something I’m consistently encouraged and inspired by is that, since Day One, this community has supported Angel over these decades. I believe community members have always valued the fact that the hospital is a consistent force for good. No matter what was happening, we could be counted on to provided top-notch, compassionate care when you needed it most.
The past decade has been an intense time of transition for Angel Medical Center — just like it has been for the entire healthcare industry. What I’m most proud of is that, despite all the changes our hospital has seen, we remain comfortingly the same. No matter what new technology we acquire, how best care practices shift, and what curveballs this stubborn COVID-19 pandemic throws at us, we’re consistently here for you, whether you need emergency care, inpatient needs, or routine care. The overarching goal that guides us today is the same one that Dr. Furman Angel looked to in 1924 when he opened the first iteration of our hospital, so he could deliver community-focused, extraordinary care with a caring touch.
Back to point that change is anything but easy. There are bumps in the road and growing pains in addition to confidence-boosting wins in the shaping of any institution, and the same holds true for Angel. This reality brings me back to the changes that my own family and I have experienced this past year, as we relocated here to Franklin. It all sounded thrilling to my 9-year-old son — until we rolled out of our old home’s driveway and started the journey to an unknown town and address. It was then that reality hit. Since he’s a child, he had to put his faith in my wife and me, and in God, about his next life chapter.
I think we all know how much we can learn from our own children, and my son said something quite profound during this time. He decided that if he stayed focused on the past, he’d never know what the future holds for him. Truer words have never been said.
As my son opened his mind and heart to our new life, there was a person who became a loving, pivotal support as he became accustomed to his new life and surroundings. It was his fourth grade teacher at Ilota Valley Elementary School, Mrs. Jenkins. She made him feel special and accepted him for who he was, which is something all of us need. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Mrs. Jenkins and all of the Ilota Valley staff for making a real difference in my child’s life, and I know that they do the same thing for every child there.
You may be wondering why I chose to share this story. It’s because I see a strong parallel as Angel Medical Center is embarking on an enormous period of change as we approach the opening of our new facility. A brand new, state-of-the-art, expanded facility is a rarity in a rural community, a true gift we are all preparing to receive. In addition to being a gift, the new Angel Medical Center is a critical, historic investment in our special community, one that will fuel even more growth for Macon County. The future is ours to write.
Since our inception, the Angel Medical Center staff has always been highly committed to caring for our community members — after all, you are their neighbors. There are hundreds individuals who have worked tirelessly over the last two years to ensure that their community received the best care possible, as we took on the ever-changing reality that is the pandemic, and their dedication is unwavering, remaining just as strong as it has always been.
As we go through transitions, it can feel easy to point out what’s not going well, and I’m here to talk to you if you experience a problem or feel we have made a decision you don’t agree with. I would ask that you also consider all that we do for our patients that is right and good, and to imagine if your son or daughter was on the receiving end of our care. I welcome the chance to talk with you directly if you have an issue you’d like to discuss; my door is always open.
We’re much more powerful together than separate, so if we can keep our eyes on the prize of supporting the new Angel Medical Center, we will all be part of the light that makes a difference and helps to create a better future for Franklin and Macon County.
All of us at Angel are proud to be here for you 24/7 in our Emergency Department, and in the rest of the hospital as well. We’re also Stroke Care Accredited by the Joint Commission, and our scores reflect the difference we make, since we know that “time is brain,” or that every second counts when suffering a stroke.
As we reflect on the past, we can at the same time look toward a bright future with high expectations. I’m happy to be here for the community, and encourage you to contact me with concerns and questions at Clint.Kendall@HCAHealthcare.com, or call the main number and ask for Clint Kendall.
Clint Kendall, FACHE, MBA, MSN, BSN, RN, is Chief Executive Officer/Chief Nursing Officer of Angel Medical Center. He started his career as a nurse, and that perspective still informs his work and passion for the patient experience. Clint holds a Master’s Degree in Business Administration, Nursing, and Health Care Management from the University of Phoenix, and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Western Carolina University. He comes to Angel Medical Center from Andalusia, Alabama, where he served as Chief Executive Officer of Andalusia Health, part of LifePoint Health. He oversaw the management and strategic planning for a 113-bed acute care facility there, and led Andalusia Physician Services as well, after serving in leadership roles at LifePoint facilities in Richlands, Virginia and Henderson, North Carolina. Clint has also earned the Certified Professional in Patient Safety (CPPS) certification, and is a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE), the American Organization of Nurse Executives (AONE), and the American Nurses Association (ANA).