Gov. Phil Bryant is continuing his focus on health care as an economic driver and will discuss ideas for growing Mississippi's health care economy, along with the results of a new study that details economic opportunities in the health care industry throughout Mississippi, during a three-stop tour on Oct. 26.
Tour stops are scheduled for:
* 7:30-9 a.m. at the Mississippi Coast Coliseum and Convention Center located at 2350 Beach Blvd. in Biloxi
* 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. at the Summit Center located at 852 North Gloster St., in Tupelo
* 3:30-5 p.m. at the Hilton located at 1001 East County Line Rd. in Jackson.
During his inaugural State of the State Address, Bryant called on the Mississippi Economic Council to conduct an in-depth study of Mississippi's health care sector. The final report, "Health Care: An Economic Driver", was completed by the Mississippi Economic Council's M.B. Swayze Foundation.
The report examines the importance of the health care industry in Mississippi and analyzes industry aspects, including regulations, business climate and workforce. The report also explores potential growth areas, including businesses that support health care.
"Health care is an industry of necessity, and I am committed to fostering a positive environment for medical development that will increase both economic opportunities and access to cutting edge medical care," Gov. Bryant said. "I appreciate the work of the MEC and look forward to traveling the state to share the ideas that will help grow the health care economy in Mississippi."
Blueprint Mississippi has named growing the health care industry as an economic driver one of its nine key goals for Mississippi. The new MEC study also outlines a health care cluster strategy for the state.
"This health care study is an example of the importance of having an action strategy for the state of Mississippi," said Blake Wilson, President and CEO of the Mississippi Economic Council. "Governor Bryant issued a call to action, using the recommendation of Blueprint, in order to ensure Mississippi is in the position of greatest opportunity, not in just providing quality health care, but creating economic development growth in all regions of our state."
During its 2012 session, the Mississippi Legislature passed Bryant's Health Care Industry Zone Act. The bill took effect July 1 and provides incentives for health care related businesses to locate new facilities in designated health care zones throughout the state. Following the measure's effective date, medical device provider Teleflex Incorporated located a new distribution facility in Olive Branch, Miss. The company expects to employ more than 200 workers in the coming years.
"Health Care: An Economic Driver" was funded by the Mississippi Partnership for Economic Development. In-kind staff support was provided by the economic development team at Entergy Mississippi.
The Oct. 26 meetings are open to the public. Register at www.mec.ms.