Georgia Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle has appointed Columbus health care executive Mark Baker to the Georgia Trauma Care Network Commission.
Baker is chief executive officer of The Hughston Clinic on Veterans Parkway in Columbus and Jack Hughston Memorial Hospital on Riverchase Drive in Phenix City. His appointment, signed Oct. 7, is effective immediately and runs through June 2017.
As a commission member, Baker will work to help strengthen the trauma system in Georgia through planning and the development of more trauma centers across the state.
Trauma is the number one cause of death for people up to age 44, according to the commission chairman’s annual report. An average of 36 years of life is lost per trauma incident versus 12 years from heart disease and stroke combined, and 16 years from cancer, the report says.
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Baker was chief operating officer at The Hughston Clinic before being promoted to CEO there and at the Phenix City hospital in 2009.
His appointment comes with the clinic recently announcing a “strategic alliance” with Columbus Regional Healthcare, with Hughston shouldering much of the orthopedic care load at Midtown Medical Center’s (formerly The Medical Center) emergency and trauma center.