Healing people runs in Fred Mullins’s family. He is connected to a long history of caring for the Augusta area, so it wasn’t a surprise when he graduated from the Medical College of Georgia as a Physician Assistant. He joined the staff of the burn center in Augusta, working under the tutelage of Dr. Joseph M. Still—the namesake and founder of the nation’s largest burn center. Dr. Mullins then returned to the Medical College of Georgia and obtained his Medical Degree in 1996. He completed his General Surgery residency at Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System in 2001, and returned to the private practice of Joseph M. Still Burn Centers, Inc., as a burn surgeon.
“Being a burn surgeon is truly a calling,” Dr. Mullins said. “While it can be emotionally and physically exhausting at times, I believe it is one of the most rewarding specialties.”
He describes the times he gets to interact with patients away from the burn center—like at survivor reunions—as some of the most special occasions.
“Seeing them getting back to as much of their pre-burn life as possible is great,” he said. “I enjoy seeing them smile, and there’s something extra special about knowing you and your team helped them get there.”
Dr. Mullins’s expertise includes the full spectrum of burn care, from field treatment, to surgery, to long-term care and rehabilitation.
“We have always believed that following a patient from their initial injury all the way through their long-term rehabilitation is best for all involved,” he said. “It allows us to build relationships and we get to really know the patients. That allows us, for example, to know if they are just having a bad day in their recovery process or if something more severe is wrong.”
That circle of care starts with a referral phone call. Often, it is Dr. Mullins taking those calls for the burn center.
“We accept every patient, every time,” he said. “We try to make the process as seamless as possible, and make sure the care of the patient is always at the top of our priority list.”
Dr. Mullins became the Medical Director of the Joseph M. Still Burn Center in July of 2004, when Dr. Still had to retire from active practice due to health problems. He now serves as President of Joseph M. Still Burn Centers, Inc., which has four clinics in the Southeast: the original in Augusta, full-service burn units in Jackson, MS, and Austell, GA, and outpatient clinics in Valdosta, GA, and Charleston, SC. He is also the President of Burn and Reconstruction Centers of America; Burn and Reconstruction Centers of Florida, which operates facilities in Miami, FL, and Bradenton, FL; Burn and Reconstruction Centers of Colorado, which operates facilities in Englewood, CO, and Aurora, CO; and Burn and Reconstruction Centers of Texas, which operates a facility in Plano, TX.