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13th annual Pretty in Pink event provides mammograms in Avery County

Pictured above: Vickie Fuller, Angela Wilson, Pat Parks. Appalachian Regional Healthcare System’s 13th Annual Pretty in Pink event was held on June 16, 2017 at Linville [ ... ]

Watauga Medical Center recognized for high-value healthcare by Premier, Inc.

Watauga Medical Center has been named a finalist for the 2017 QUEST Award for High-value Healthcare from Premier Inc., a leading healthcare improvement company, for  [ ... ]

Blowing Rock Fashion Show: Forty Years of Iconic Fashion, July 21, 2017

The Appalachian Regional Healthcare Foundation is pleased to present the 40th Annual Blowing Rock Fashion Show, which will be held on July 21, 2017 at the Blowing Rock Country [ ... ]

Blowing Rock Fashion Show: Forty Years of Iconic Fashion, July 21, 2017

The Appalachian Regional Healthcare Foundation is pleased to present the 40th Annual Blowing Rock Fashion Show, which will be held on July 21, 2017 at the Blowing Rock Country [ ... ]

Speaker Event: Mindfulness in a Time of Loss

 Thursday, July 27  8:00-11:30 a.m., Watauga Medical Center Auditorium
1:00-4:30 p.m., Midway Baptist Church, West Jefferson

Local 11-year-old starts a beary special program at Watauga Medical Center

  Few things in life can seem scarier than the thought of surgery – especially for an 11-year-old. After her tonsillectomy at Watauga Medical Center, Lula Bovino a [ ... ]

Scholarship helps student and patients breathe easier

Have you ever received a scholarship and wondered what it could mean for your future? Callie Crump, Pulmonary Navigator at Appalachian Regional Healthcare System (ARHS),  [ ... ]

Nursing school scholarship leads to second career opportunity at Cannon Memorial Hospital

An interesting series of serendipitous events led William Orr to Cannon Memorial Hospital. As a child, Orr desired to follow in his father’s footsteps by serving in the [ ... ]

More News | More Events 

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, Division of Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities and Substance Abuse Services (NCDHHS) has selected Charles A. Cannon, Jr. Memorial Hospital (Cannon Hospital) in Avery County, North Carolina to receive a $6.5 million grant award, to expand the availability of behavioral health beds in the western region of North Carolina.


Chuck Mantooth, President and CEO of Appalachian Regional Healthcare System (ARHS) commented on the grant award by saying, “we are extremely pleased to receive this grant from the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services. It will allow Cannon Hospital and ARHS to significantly impact the behavioral health crisis occurring in North Carolina.”

The funding for this grant originated from the Dorothea Dix Hospital Property Fund, which was created by the North Carolina General Assembly from the sale of Dorothea Dix Hospital in 2015. The Dorothea Dix Hospital Property Fund was established as a part of NCDHHS’s plan to expand the number of beds that provide crisis stabilization and inpatient behavioral health care.  The plan calls for 150 new behavioral health inpatient beds across the state.

Over the last five years Cannon Hospital has experienced a drastic increase in the demand for behavioral health inpatient beds from across the region. In 2016 Cannon Hospital received over 5,000 psychiatric referrals, but was only able to admit 560 psychiatric patients. Additionally, in 2014 the US Health Resources and Services Administration reported that, “30 counties in North Carolina were designated Mental Health Professional Shortage Areas.” Avery County (where Cannon Hospital operates), was among those counties.

Currently Cannon Hospital operates as a 25-bed Critical Access Hospital and as a 10-bed behavioral health unit. Cannon Hospital also provides an emergency department, imaging, laboratory, outpatient behavioral health, a rehabilitation center, a surgery suite, and cardiopulmonary rehabilitation services. This full-service medical campus is the hub of healthcare delivery in Avery County.

Mantooth commented on the future of Cannon Hospital by saying, “I want to be clear that Cannon Hospital will continue to meet the medical needs of the community by operating as a Critical Access Hospital. These additional behavioral health beds afford us the opportunity to grow the medical campus at Cannon Hospital and to develop the rural hospital of the future model, which can be replicated across the country.  These grant funds are a win for patients, our community, our healthcare system and the State of North Carolina.”

Appalachian Regional Healthcare System will host a public information session about this grant and the future of Cannon Hospital on Tuesday, June 6, 2017 at 5:30 pm at the Hugh Chapman Center in Linville, NC. The public is invited to attend.