The rapid rise in the number of assessment site screenings we are finding as COVID-19 positive, along with more inpatients in our hospitals, combined with increasing cases in Nashville and across Tennessee, means the road ahead will be steeper for a while.
Although there will be more challenging days, the months of preparation we have put into place will help us in meaningful ways. The teamwork and camaraderie on display is remarkable. People from across our organization have joined together to share ideas and collaborate in new ways to solve problems, develop new procedures and systems, encouraging each other in a heartfelt manner. Simply, we are at our best when facing a challenge.
While the eyes of the community are on us, seeking reassurance that we will be here for them, the support we are receiving should, in turn, give us confidence that our contributions are truly valued.
For example, we received a shipment of personal protective equipment from the local chapter of Healing Hands International. We are grateful that many other organizations and individuals from across the region have reached out with offers of resources and assistance. These constructive, problem-solving people understand and value what we are doing.
As another example, the talented students of Vanderbilt University School of Medicine have organized a volunteer service to provide babysitting, pet sitting, run errands and provide other assistance for our faculty and staff. If you need these services, information about the website created by the students is in this issue of MyVUMC and on the dedicated COVID-19 website.
Finally, I would like to close with a letter from a Nashville 4th grader who has a message for all of us.
Dear Vanderbilt doctors and nurses,
I just wanted to thank you so much for all the hard work you put into your job. Currently, times have been very stressful for many people. But, I can’t even imagine how stressful it must be for you. Families all around, including individuals, are incredibly grateful for all of your heroic sacrifices put toward helping people. You are all wonderful, devoted people that the world is lucky to have. Continue being strong and helping other people and these hard times will pass. Then again, thank you so very much for your time, sacrifices, and hard work you put into your job.
C. Wright Pinson, MBA, MD
Deputy CEO and Chief Health System Officer