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Our History

A Short History of the Forsyth-Stokes-Davie County Medical Society
Over 100 years ago, area physicians formed the Forsyth County Medical Society, with the goal of helping local citizenry and the Medical Community. Over the intervening years, our organization has grown to encompass three counties, several community care facilities, numerous health initiatives, and over 700 professional members.

The Early Years
1903 - The Forsyth County Medical Society is formed. Original Twin-City Hospital has 233 admissions - 99  “Charity” & 124 “Pay.”

1904 - The Twin City Medical Society, the black counterpart to the Forsyth County Medical Society, is formed.

1913 - Twin cities of Winston and Salem merge. There is a severe smallpox outbreak.  Policemen and physicians go house to house giving inoculations (often by force).

1917 - NC’s first county TB sanitarium built north of Winston-SalemMedical Society revises the “fee schedule”
  Day Visits $2.00 Night Visits $4.00
  Country visits $0.50/mile Office visits $1.00

1919 - The Forsyth and Stokes County Medical Societies hold joint meeting.City regulates midwifery.

1925 - Society adopts resolution endorsing revocation of licenses of physicians found guilty of “violating the narcotics law.”

1934 - N.C Medical Society goes bankrupt in June. Local Society members agree to raise dues to support the state society

1937 - Creation of the “woman’s auxiliary.”

1938 - Kate B. Reynolds Memorial Hospital opens w/ 100 beds.

1943 - Units from Camp Sutton sponsor chemical warfare school on grounds of Bowman Gray School of Medicine. It included demonstration of poisonous gases and instruction of how to combat them.

1953 - Society members approve administration of Salk polio vaccine to first and second graders in Forsyth County
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Health Planning - A Big Concern in the 70's
1962 - Citizens Planning Committee formed.

1970 - April 14, 1970 - Forsyth Health Planning Committee was endorsed by the Society.

1970 - State Planning Division begins to form multi-county regional planning mechanisms.

1974 - The Health Planning Act of 1974 set up the Health Systems Agency. With the emergence of HMO’s, health planning lost its impetus.
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On the Road to Managed Care
1968 - Dr. Katherine Anderson advises that newcomers to community are having problems getting a physician.

1969 - Manson Meads, Dean of Bowman Gray, and William Anlyan, Dean of Duke Medical School advise that “[S]hortage in medical and para-medical personnel was acute.”

1973 - Society has speaker on Kaiser Permanente program in Oakland, California.

1975 - Reid Bahnson announced to the Society that RJR planned to sponsor a “comprehensive prepaid medical plan (HMO) which is to be offered to their employees and families.”

1976 - Voluntary Cost Containment Program started. Hospitals and physicians voluntarily reduce rates about 6%. But a federal cap was placed on spending anyway.

1981 - The Society forms the Forsyth Medicine/Business Coalition (the first such organization in North Carolina) with local business and industry to address concerns of double-digit health care inflation. The organization continues to meet regularly for the next twenty years.

1983 - Sara Lee forms PPO

1986 - Partners formed.

1993 - Clinton’s Health Care Reform Task Force spurred the growth of managed care.
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Society Hires Staff as a Response to a Changing Environment
1976 - The society hires its first full-time staff, Executive Director, James Robinson.

1977 - The Forsyth County Medical Society changes its name to the Forsyth-Stokes-Davie Medical Society after joining with Davie County physicians.
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Community Service Projects
1977 - Tel-Med health information library (tapes accessed by telephone) started - 205,000 calls received in first year!

1979 - Weekly health column begun in W.S. Journal.

1980 - Society sponsors its first Community Intern Program in order to give community leaders a more intimate look at our health care delivery system.

1984 - Weekly Radio program on WSJS devoted to health topics.

1985 - “Physicians and Community United Against Drug and Alcohol Abuse” is formed to lead the fight against drug and alcohol abuse.

1990 - First Med Bowl Fundraiser for Crisis Control Ministry Pharmacy. Society receives AMA President’s Citation for Service to Public!

1992 - Ethics Task Force formed.

1994 - Medical Society and Bar Association work together on Habitat House.

1995 - First Med Show

1999 - First Med-Law Shootout

2001 - First Med Roll Casino Night
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A History of Caring for the Medically Indigent
1968 - Society asks Citizens Planning Council to study the medical facilities and the care of the medically indigent.

1969 - Christian Medical Society of Bowman Gray School of Medicine and the Christian Student Fellowship of N.C. Baptist Hospital form the first free medical clinic in North Carolina. They expand to other churches and become known as the Downtown Health Clinics.

1970 - White paper from Medical Society Committee, plus support of the Forsyth Health Planning Council, led to Kate B. Reynolds Hospital becoming Reynolds Health Center in 1972.

1973 - Trinity Moravian Church Free Medical Clinic formed.

1975 - Society complains to the County Commissioners that serious financial problems threaten the programs “serving the needs of the medically indigent in Forsyth County” and urges them to provide more support.

1986 - Samaritan Ministries Free Medical Clinic formed.

1987 - Committee of Society suggests we explore the possibility of doctors caring for the “temporarily indigent” in their offices on a rotating basis.

1990 - First Med Bowl supports Crisis Control Ministry’s free pharmacy.

1992 - President Tom Koontz forms committee, chaired by Tom Hinson, which leads to Doctors Care Program in 1993.

2000 - The Society’s Community Care Center, now the largest free medical clinic in North Carolina, opens in October.

2001 - The Downtown Health Plaza (successor to Reynolds Health Center) opens.

2004 - Doctors Care program transitions to Healthcare Access Inc.
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Medical Liability Insurance Crises
1975 - St. Paul notified 3 doctors at Forsyth Hospital that, as of 7/23, they would no longer be insured and later withdraws from the State. 93% of doctors in the NC were then covered by St. Paul. The North Carolina Medical Society responded by forming Medical Liability Mutual Insurance Company.

1986 - Another medical malpractice insurance availability crisis occurs and NCMS calls for physicians to get more involved in politics and push medical liability insurance reform.

2003 - NCMS calls for rally in Raleigh to get the General Assembly’s attention. The April 8th rally is the largest turnout of physicians in North Carolina history but legislation stalls in the Senate.
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