A Message from the CEO
by Kay Whitley BSN, RN, MBA, NHA Chief Executive Officer and Nursing Home Administrator Spanish Peaks Regional Health Center & Veterans Community Living Center
In my message several weeks ago, I shared my appreciation for everything that all of you have done to support us and support each other in helping keep the Spanish Peaks region as safe as possible from COVID-19 infections.
My gratitude for everyone in our region grows daily and I couldn’t be any prouder to be right here, right now. Thank you all, from the bottom of my heart.
Our amazing staff has been overwhelmed with the support so many of you have shared online, in person and with kind gestures. I sincerely thank all who have donated your time making masks and shields for our staff to wear, donating supplies and for keeping us in your thoughts and prayers. This is a trying time for so many and your encouragement means the world to our team.
I would like to thank the Patel family for feeding our entire staff last Wednesday. The chicken dinner was delicious. The Patels own the Taco Bell/KFC restaurant in Walsenburg and graciously donated the entire lunch/dinner.
I would also like to thank Karen Wilson and her staff from La Plaza Inn for donating pizzas for all employees this past Saturday. The delicious pizza was enjoyed and appreciated by all.
We have had other offers to feed our staff and we appreciate those offers tremendously, but regulations dictate that only a commercial kitchen can provide in-facility meals. Thank you again for the offers.
As I write this, Huerfano County still has one of the lowest positive COVID-19 case counts in the state – only one county resident has tested positive for the virus and was taken to a Pueblo hospital for care. You most likely know that testing hasn’t been nearly as available as you and we would like, but this news should still encourage all of us that our efforts are working.
Every day, we continue to actively pursue the acquisition of additional tests, more PPE and more equipment. This is a major focus for our Incident Command team. We are working closely with State officials and our local Health Department and are optimistic that the national availability of these items is increasing, and we will see progress soon.
For now, we continue to test patients who have been admitted to the hospital and have significant symptoms or our health care workers that have been exposed or are symptomatic.
I know this is incredibly difficult for everyone and I share your concerns. I know how frustrating this period is and we all want it behind us. The good news is, the steps you are taking are working! There is light at the end of this tunnel and if everyone keeps doing their part, we will be there soon.
So please, keep social distancing. Stay at home except when absolutely necessary. Keep washing your hands diligently and clean high-touch surfaces often. Those actions are just as critical now as they have been the past two months.
I hope all of you are finding positive moments every day during this period. In spite of this week’s cold spell, we’ve had some beautiful spring days lately. It’s hard to think of a more wonderful place to be or more wonderful people to call our neighbors. Thank you all and keep up the good work and positive energy!