Belmont University Welcomes HCA Healthcare as Health Advisor for Oct. 22 Presidential Debate

HCA Healthcare team to provide clinical guidance, testing and health and safety support for the Nashville event

Fisher and Perlin
Pictured Left to right are Belmont University President Dr. Bob Fisher and Dr. Jonathan Perlin, chief medical officer and president, clinical operations group of HCA Healthcare

Belmont University announced today that HCA Healthcare is working with the institution to implement health and safety protocols for the Oct. 22, 2020 Presidential Debate at the University’s Curb Event Center. 

HCA Healthcare is supporting protocols developed by the Cleveland Clinic, who is serving as the global health advisor for all four debates, and agreed to by the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD). In addition to leading local site planning in consultation with Cleveland Clinic and the Metro Public Health Department, HCA Healthcare is providing support and expertise surrounding health protocols, promoting universal masking and facilitating testing at the final debate in Nashville.

A learning health system with more than 2,000 sites of care, including 186 hospitals, in 21 states and the United Kingdom, HCA Healthcare is a leader in infection prevention that sees more than 35 million annual patient encounters a year. 

Belmont President Dr. Bob Fisher said, “We are confident that HCA Healthcare’s knowledge as a leading healthcare provider with extensive infectious disease expertise will provide superior clinical guidance and safety support for this important event. HCA Healthcare has long been a valued partner for Belmont, supporting our students through scholarships, leading important community conversations on our campus and working with our faculty to ensure the next generation of health care leaders is well positioned to tackle current and future issues.” 

“We are pleased to provide clinical resources and expertise honed through experience refining safety protocols and protection measures since the onset of COVID-19,” said Dr. Jonathan Perlin, chief medical officer and president, clinical operations group of HCA Healthcare,” said Dr. Jonathan Perlin, chief medical officer and president, clinical operations group of HCA Healthcare. “We are honored to collaborate with Belmont University to help ensure a safe event for the Nashville community and visitors from around the country.”

Members from the HCA Healthcare team recently traveled to Cleveland to observe practices and protocols for the Sept. 29 presidential debate. In addition to providing guidance on safety measures for the Oct. 22 debate and the days leading up to it, HCA Healthcare will be assisting with advance communications to event participants, including health and safety information, and will be providing the University with informational signage and health education printed materials to share with guests.

Belmont is committed to the health and safety of its campus community as well as the debate candidates, campaign teams and media guests. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the University has already established a number of practices in line with protocols developed by the Cleveland Clinic and in consultation with HCA Healthcare to mitigate impact on the campus, including:

  • Debate guests will be required to adhere to the same safety standards being required of Belmont students, faculty, staff, vendors and visitors, including wearing masks indoors and out, social distancing and frequent hand washing/sanitizing. 
  • Debate operations will be separated from standard campus operations via credentialing and security measures to avoid close contacts between the two populations. 
  • HCA Healthcare will provide testing/screening protocols as needed for debate operations in coordination with CPD and Cleveland Clinic. 
  • Debate operations are being designed to maximize social distancing. This includes a significant reduction in media attendance, the absence of a Spin Alley and associate delegates and extremely limited ticket availability for attending the event.
  • Classes and other campus academic/student life operations will be conducted virtually during Oct. 21-22, the two days with the anticipated heaviest debate-related activity on campus.

About HCA Healthcare

Nashville-based HCA Healthcare is one of the nation’s leading providers of healthcare services comprising more than 2,000 sites of care, including 186 hospitals, surgery centers, freestanding ERs, urgent care centers, and physician clinics, in 21 states and the United Kingdom. With its founding in 1968, HCA Healthcare created a new model for hospital care in the United States, using combined resources to strengthen hospitals, deliver patient-focused care and improve the practice of medicine. HCA Healthcare has conducted a number of clinical studies, including one that demonstrated that full-term delivery is healthier than early elective delivery of babies and another that identified a clinical protocol that can reduce bloodstream infections in ICU patients by 44 percent. HCA Healthcare is a learning health system that uses its more than 35 million annual patient encounters to advance science, improve patient care and save lives. Please click here to connect with HCA Healthcare on social media.