During times of uncertainty, such as the current battle against COVID-19, we are simply inspired by the opportunity to witness how people never fail to rally around each other – so generously helping friends, neighbors and even strangers. In the midst of this incredible generosity, our community has rallied together in gratitude and with a shared goal to keep our healthcare workers healthy – protecting those who leave their loved ones at home every day so they can care for someone else’s loved one in the hospital. This truly is the Yuma way.
Our community’s fantastic generosity has been graciously accepted through the Foundation of Yuma Regional Medical Center. From the beginning, our community has responded to our healthcare workers’ needs, donating homemade masks and other essential supplies and providing the Foundation with monetary gifts. Funds have been used to purchase critical equipment and $10,000 donated was used towards our Caring for our Caregivers program. Yumans have demonstrated an extraordinary understanding of how we can enhance clinical care by caring for our own frontline staff.
The Foundation of YRMC’s COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund has helped address COVID-19’s devastating impact on patients and families, front line caregivers and the delivery of health care. In
addition to supporting the spiritual well-being of patients through a new art program (an important need during the no visitor restrictions), the funds assist with the expansion of telehealth efforts and made the purchase of $58,000 in critical new equipment possible. Power air-purifying respirators (PAPRs) are special helmets that provide critical protection for our healthcare teams working in such a physically demanding environment, supporting patients who need and deserve their compassionate care.
Caring for our Caregivers – this important community-backed fund does just that. The program has helped nearly 1,000 YRMC employees maintain work-life balance during this incredibly stressful time. Caring for our Caregivers provides employees with home cleanings, car washes and the delivery of family dinners. Additionally, the funds are used to host events that offer much-needed mental health breaks. Through the community’s support, employees are able to let go of some of the stresses life presents us – the day to day chores and tasks that consume our minds – freeing up mental and physical energy to focus solely on the most important task of caring for patients.
Private residents have shown their appreciation by donating nearly 10,000 hand-sewn masks to help protect our caregivers and patients. Several of our healthcare workers paired these masks with hospital-grade N-95s, preserving the integrity and extending the use of this critical and scarce protective source. Many people have donated cleaning supplies to be used in non-clinical areas, while other residents have used their 3D printers to create mask extenders to bring comfort to our employees. Lastly, so many churches, businesses and restaurant owners have expressed their thanks by bringing much-appreciated meals for our workers, even remembering to help feed all the caregivers who work late at night while the rest of us sleep.
YRMC understands that enhancing clinical care extends beyond monetary donations and equipment. It’s the day to day acts of appreciation that give our healthcare workers the strength and courage needed to face the global pandemic head-on. Colorful chalk messages have appeared on the sidewalks surrounding the hospital. People routinely stand outside YRMC holding wonderful, handmade signs. Kind notes are being emailed day after day to cheer on our employees – and our patients. Please know that our doctors, nurses and other caregivers see these uplifting messages, which they carry in their hearts as they return to work every day and faithfully provide the comfort and care our patients need and deserve.
We agree that this appreciation for our healthcare heroes really is deserved, both for their work during COVID-19 and for the commitment shown to our patients all year long. We are so very proud of the entire YRMC family.
For all of us living and working in this amazing community, we have so much for which to be grateful – and to say thank you.
Thank you for supporting each other and thank you for strengthening our capacity to care for our community.