The past few months have brought unimaginable pain to millions of people in our country and abroad. Storms, massacres and wildfires have claimed lives and left many without homes and possessions.
As I watched these horrible events unfold, I was reminded of how important our work is. Health care professionals are at the forefront of almost every tragedy to heal and comfort the sick and wounded. We have to be there to provide lifesaving care.
I also think about the countless other tragedies you see every day that often don’t make the evening news. Opioid abuse, domestic violence and other crimes send people to our hospitals and physician offices every day. You are there for the victims, providing empathetic care to their bodies and their spirits. Our patients tell us this in a number of ways, including through personal letters to me, which I read and treasure.
Those of you who don’t deliver direct patient care play an important role in keeping our facilities open and able to care for those who need us. Team members throughout our system have also contributed to relief efforts, donating money and PTO hours to Baptist Memorial Health Care Foundation funds that assist those affected by extreme weather. Our Hurricane Harvey fundraising effort raised more than $12,000 in just three weeks. I’m sure many of you have also made contributions through your churches or other community organizations, as well.
Our country is so blessed to have health care workers who bravely answer the call to help during the toughest times. Many of the catastrophes we’ve heard and read about could have been even worse if it weren’t for hospitals, physicians, nurses and other health care team members. When you come to work every day, I hope you know how important you are to our communities and our country. You make a profound impact on people’s lives every day. Thank you for your sacrifice, generosity and grace. You are all American heroes.