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Happy Monday, Employee Partners,


I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend.


As we kick off another exciting week together, I want to take this opportunity to reflect on our Annual Compliance and Ethics Training that took place this past Saturday— Unleash Your Superpower 2024. It was a resounding success, and I am immensely proud of everyone involved.


I want to extend my sincere appreciation to Charlean Williams, OTR, Vice President of Health Information Management and Compliance, for her outstanding coordination and meticulous organization of this event; it was truly first-class. Together with her dedicated team and support from our employee partners at the Employee Support Center, they showcased an exceptional educational experience that surpassed all expectations. The event brought together over 260 individuals, including nursing administrators, therapists, and professionals from our organization, reinforcing our commitment to compliance and ethical practices. 


Our keynote speakers were nothing short of exceptional, educating our attendees with a wealth of invaluable knowledge on critical aspects such as clinical care, documentation, compliance, coding and reimbursement, privacy, HIPAA, OIG updates, and insights into the future of our industry. We have been committed to hosting this event annually for nearly two decades. Our commitment to having nationally renowned leaders in our industry as speakers is a true testament to our unwavering dedication to remaining at the forefront of our field.  We are consistently seeking to stay ahead of the curve and provide our employee partners with the essential tools for continued success. I cannot thank Charlean and everyone involved enough for making the event a huge success.  We are sincerely grateful!


Amidst our successes, I want to address a challenge that lies before us. As leaders of Mid South, we have been proactive in keeping you informed about legislative issues that affect our industry. We have sought your support in advocating for healthcare legislation that has had an adverse impact on us. As of January 1, 2024, we are witnessing a 3.37% reduction in the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule, thus affecting our company's bottom line. However, there is still hope. Congress and the Senate will reconvene in March to consider extending funding for our country, and it is crucial that our voices are heard. Charlean will continue to provide you with links and telephone numbers to legislators, enabling us to express how these reductions are impacting our industry. Let us unite as a company and an industry to make our voice resoundingly clear.  We need your support!


In times like these, it is essential to draw strength from within and seek inspiration from our almighty and loving Father. I would like to share the following devotional message and scripture.  I hope this message will uplift and encourage you in the face of all challenges that you may encounter:



Embracing Challenges and Rising Above as a Team


As we navigate this ever-changing landscape of our industry, I am reminded of the incredible strength and resilience that resides within our united team. It is important for us to remember that challenges are not obstacles but opportunities for growth. Together, we possess a steadfast spirit that can conquer any adversity, for our strength lies in our unity as a faith-based community. Knowing that God is our protector and provider.


So, in times like these, it is essential for us to draw strength from our faith, to find solace in the knowledge that we are not alone on this journey. Let’s remember God's promise in the words below:


"God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble."

Psalm 46:1 (NIV)


This is a powerful verse that carries a message of comfort and reassurance in times of trouble. It's important as we navigate the challenges that we're experiencing in everyday life and in our industry that we turn to God for refuge and strength. We can take comfort in knowing that we can rely on Him in every circumstance. In times of stress, uncertainty, or difficulty, let us seek His presence through prayer, meditating on his word, and seeking his guidance.

May this truth anchor our hearts and minds as we face the demands of our daily work.


In uncertain times like these, I urge you to hold on to your Christian faith, have faith in your abilities, and approach each day with a strong determination to make a positive impact that reflects the love of Christ. Our journey may have unexpected twists and turns, but I am confident that we will navigate it with grace, resilience, and the firm belief that, with God's guidance, we are capable of achieving greatness in our lives.


I want to express my heartfelt gratitude to each and every one of you. Your dedication, passion to serve our patients, and commitment to our mission are what make our organization truly exceptional. Together, with God as our refuge and our unity in Christ, this is our strength; we will overcome any challenge that comes our way.


I want to wish you a week filled with God’s blessings.


Steven L. Cole

President and Chief Executive Officer 

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We are thrilled to announce the hiring of our new, full-time Physical Therapist, Joni Barnes, DPT. She serves at Covington County Hospital.

Joni has an impressive, well-rounded background in her field, beginning with a solid educational foundation. She went to Cathedral High School in Natchez, MS, and then the University of Southern Mississippi, where she graduated with a Bachelor’s in Exercise Science. She was awarded her Doctorate of Physical Therapy from the University of South Alabama. In addition, Joni graduated with honors from USM and held a position as Volunteer Chair Coordinator at USA.

Joni has been married for 14 years and has four little children. She holds a deep faith in Christ and a strong desire to help people improve their quality of life. Growing up, Joni was deeply impacted at a young age by her mom’s struggle to provide for her family. Her mom became a widower with three children and did not have a degree. Joni saw her grandfather go through therapy and decided she wanted to find a career that would allow her to help others and earn a good salary while having the flexibility to care for her family. She is especially interested in geriatrics.

“We were made to move and made for community. Being a physical therapist is more than a job,” says Joni. As a PT, she brings her passion for helping others into her everyday life.

Mid South values the continuing education and promotion of exceptional leaders. We are delighted to have Joni as a partner in our company, and we look forward to many opportunities for her to further her education and specialize with certification and training. We look forward to her progress and know she will have opportunities to improve our company and the lives of our patients in her new role.

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We are thrilled to announce the hiring of our new, full-time Rehab Tech, Sidney Hamann, RT. She serves at UMMC Grenada. Sidney graduated from Grenada High School and attended Holmes Community College.

Sidney has a little girl named Landree and two bonus daughters. She enjoys working as a Rehab Tech, meeting new people, and seeing patients’ progress. She enjoys spending time with family, friends, and her children.

Sidney is excited to be on the therapy team and looks forward to continuing to grow and learn. With a teachable spirit and a heart to serve, she will touch the lives of our patients. We are thrilled to have her as a partner and look forward to many opportunities for her to further her education and specialize with certification and training.

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