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Beaufort Doctor to Head DHEC

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A Senate committee has approved the pick of a hospital executive to run South Carolina's health and environmental department.

The Medical Affairs Committee on Thursday unanimously approved Dr. Rick Toomey to be director of the Department of Health and Environmental Services. Toomey's appointment now goes to the full Senate.

He was appointed to DHEC's board a year ago, after what turned out to be a 17-month search for a director had started.

None of the senators on the committee criticized Toomey, who said he understands the important relationship between environmental protection and health and promised to serve a full four-year term.

Toomey was president of Beaufort Memorial Hospital from 2007 to 2016.

DHEC's 3,000 employees oversee everything from hospitals to water quality to dams and landfills

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