Spreading Good News: Acts of Kindness and Gratitude Help Caregivers Cope

Added on Apr 14, 2020

Spreading Good News: Acts of Kindness and Gratitude Help Caregivers Cope
By Lauren Keeley

“The smallest acts can have the biggest impact,” Press Ganey Chief Clinical Officer Dr. Jessica Dudley observed during a recent COVID-19 Caregiver Collaborative meeting. She was referring to the many examples of kindness and support for frontline caregivers that help sustain them during these challenging times. “Health care teams across the country are working incredibly long hours, missing their families, and putting themselves at risk. Patients and communities see and appreciate this, and they want to give back. The expressions of compassion and gratitude help bring light to some of the darkness,” Dr. Dudley stressed.

To help spread the light, we will use this space each week to highlight acts of kindness and support that our health care partners across the country are sharing with us.

  •  University of Chicago Medicine has created a Facebook page for people to send encouraging words, artwork, and thank-you notes to its front-line health care workers and hospital staff.

  • Medical students from Maine to Texas are convening into groups called COVID Sitters to provide free childcare, pet sitting, and grocery shopping services to hospital workers serving on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Leaders at the Cleveland Clinic are boosting caregiver morale by posting videos of gratitude and highlighting positive patient comments on a virtual Kudoboard as well as promoting the number of safely discharged patients.

  • Members of the Akron, Ohio, community paraded their vehicles around Cleveland Clinic Akron General, waving colorful posters of thanks and blaring horns, to show their appreciation for caregivers on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic.

  • Residents in the North Loop neighborhood of Minneapolis are celebrating health care workers fighting the coronavirus by cheering from their apartment balconies every night at 7 p.m. for two minutes.

  • The largest electrical workers’ union in the Massachusetts region, IBEW Local 103, has donated 20,000 medical-grade protective masks to the Massachusetts Nurses Association for direct distribution to front-line caregivers at Brigham and Women’s Hospital.

  • The emergency department at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City, part of Northwell Health, has started conducting daily Hope Huddles, during which unit nurses from the ICU visit the ED to share stories of patients recovering from COVID-19, providing closure and optimism to ED nurses about their former patients.

  • Due to restrictions in social gatherings, the Hartford HealthCare Center for Healthy Aging has shifted its in-person caregiver support groups to hosting four call-in caregiver support groups each week led by dementia specialists and research coordinators so that caregivers at senior centers and senior living communities feel a sense of community and connectivity.

  • Franciscan Health’s Graduate Medical Education team left end-of-shift thank-you notes on the windshields of staff and providers expressing gratitude for their unwavering commitment to helping patients.

  • Every day, Mosaic Life Care posts a “Heroes in Health Care” feature on its intranet that highlights a caregiver who has gone above and beyond their duty in fighting COVID-19.

Visit our dedicated COVID-19 webpage for additional resources.