Published on April 08, 2020

Hospital prepared to meet community needs

By John Cacciamani, MD
President and CEO, Chestnut Hill Hospital

Chestnut Hill Hospital is ready to meet the needs of our community. Our amazing staff – housekeepers, valets, nurses and physicians are working everyday to provide care to our neighbors. It is their courage, skill and commitment to your well-being that will see us through this global pandemic that has moved into our community.

This is not an easy time. I’ve seen a nurse shed tears coping with her family’s reluctance to give hugs at the end of a demanding day. I hear staffs’ concerns about the what-ifs and unknowns of COVID-19. I recognize the frustration of physicians continually conforming to updated policies and procedures. I expect this during an unusually challenging time.

What has surprised me is the spirit of people not to just persevere but rise up to overcome the obstacles we’re facing. Many of our staff, forced to work from home, is staying connected and providing invaluable support to our operations. Physicians’ whose practices are closed have offered to provide care at other locations. Nurses remain steadfast in their commitment to providing compassionate, quality care. These are our heroes. They are dedicated to caring for you and the community. Please thank them on the Chestnut Hill Hospital Facebook page or leave a chalk message on the sidewalk outside the Hospital.

I want to thank the entire community for an amazing demonstration of kindness and generosity. Our call for masks was met with enthusiasm. Community organizations from Chestnut Hill, Mt Airy, Germantown and Roxborough pushed our request even further. Local businesses and residents responded with surgical, N95 and construction masks. Others have offered to hand make mask covers. Your donations represent the empathy that mean so much to staff right now. Thank you for lifting their spirits.

Meeting the needs of this community is always at the forefront of our decision making at Chestnut Hill Hospital. On March 26, we launched a telemedicine program at our employed physician practices to better meet patient needs during the pandemic. Patient’s can meet with providers on phone or via computer. Know that we’re not sitting idle; we will continue to evolve to meet your needs in all circumstances.

Lastly, I want to encourage you to maintain social distance. If asked what our greatest need is at this moment, my response would be for each of you to understand the significance of staying at home and maintain a safe distance from others outside of your home. This one action will make a difference in the health of our community and my entire staff of heroes.