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Upstate Docs write book

Two doctors with decades of experience in the Upstate have authored a new book, Unbalanced – The Evolving Medical Care Crisis.

The book by Dr. Spence Taylor, M.D. and Dr. Jerry Youkey, M.D. looks at the various aspects of the modern medical care landscape and what are the solutions that will lead to better patient and doctor satisfaction. Filled with personal stories from patients who experienced both the best and worst of modern medicine as well as leadership insights from the two doctors, Unbalanced tells the story and evolution of the medical care environment over the past century. Order the book here.

“Our goal was to chronicle what works and what doesn’t work with medical care, and then offer the answers needed to create a better world,” Youkey said.

Both men are principals in Integral Leaders in Health, a public benefit corporation created to support the betterment of communities at large and operate in a responsible and sustainable manner. The group plans to start by addressing the current medical care crisis in South Carolina – progressive replacement of patient well-being as the primary purpose of medicine. Their goal is to focus on medical care, which goes beyond access and quality of healthcare and squarely looks at balancing the medical care environment in support of the patient-doctor relationship.

Using their 150 years of combined leadership in creating healthcare solutions for South Carolina citizens, coupled with having gained new perspectives working on different ventures, Integral Leaders in Health have a goal of creating guideways for a stronger medical care environment across the country.

Unbalanced will be the first in a projected series of books looking at solving the medical care crisis along with other initiatives from Integral Leaders in Health.

Youkey is the founding dean of the University of South Carolina School of Medicine Greenville and USC associate provost for Health Sciences – Greenville. Dr. Youkey joined Greenville Health System (GHS) in 1998. During his 21 years at GHS, he was responsible for expansion of the health system’s research and education activities; creation of a 1,200 physician group practice; progressive integration of hospital-physician patient care; and for the growing University of South Carolina health sciences presence in the Upstate.

Prior to joining GHS, Youkey served as chief of the department of surgery and director of the peripheral vascular fellowship program at Geisinger Medical Center in Danville, Pennsylvania. He also served in the United States Army Medical Corps and was honorably discharged in 1984 with the rank of lieutenant colonel. In recognition of his transformative health care leadership, May 10, 2019, was declared “Doctor Jerry Ray Youkey Day” in the city and county of Greenville, and in September 2019 Governor Henry McMaster honored Youkey with the Order of the Palmetto for his contributions and leadership to the state of South Carolina.

Taylor is a nationally recognized academic physician leader with 30 years of experience as a senior executive, surgeon, full professor and researcher. Most recently, Taylor served as president of the Greenville Health System (GHS) -- now a part of Prisma Health. He was the only physician to be named president in the 107-year history of GHS -- a health system at the time of his leadership with nearly $3 billion in annual operating revenue, eight hospitals, 1,600 beds, 2,000 employed providers, 16,000 employees and an emerging academic health center.

As a nationally recognized physician leader, Taylor is a member of every significant academic organization in surgery. He was elected as a director to the American Board of Surgery (ABS) in 2011 and served as Chair of the ABS in 2018-2019. He also is a past president of both the Southern Surgical Association and the Southern Association for Vascular Surgery.

Taylor is the recipient of multiple teaching awards and the author or co-author of more than 120 peer-reviewed publications and book chapters. Additionally, Taylor often lectures across the country on clinical outcomes as well as the role of physicians as leaders in medicine and patient care.

“We must restore balance to the current medical care environment and make patient well-being the priority. To do that requires integral, win-for-all solutions devoted to systematic change – change that can only be accomplished through integral leadership. We must make one from many for the service of all,” Taylor said.


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