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Letter from the President and CEO

A month ago, who would have thought terms like social distancing, surge plans and quarantine would be part of our regular vocabulary? But here we are, in uncharted territory, navigating our way through this Coronavirus pandemic and its implications on our lives.

Lakewood Health System’ primary concern and focus continues to be the safety and welfare of our patients, staff members and community. I’m proud of our providers and employees for taking a cautious, proactive approach to this situation. Our Hospital Incident Command System (HICS) team has been meeting around the clock for weeks, putting measures into place such as restricting visitors, postponing elective procedures, and screening all employees and visitors at the door – to keep people safe, prevent the spread of the virus and ensure we are using our resources and supplies wisely.

I acknowledge and recognize these situations can cause worry and anxiety in people, especially for the elderly or those who already have serious health conditions. Also concerning is the significant impact this situation will have on our local economy. These are all unknowns right now. We don’t yet know how this will evolve over the next few months, or to what extent we will be affected. There are things out of our control, and that can feel unsettling. But we do have control over some things, such as how we react and what we can do to help others. Even if we can’t be face-to-face with our friends or loves ones, we can still show we care with a phone call or an e-mail. We can ask how people are doing and really listen to their answer. We can find the good in people and situations. We can be revived by nature by going for a walk or taking a few deep breaths of fresh air. We can reconnect with old friends. We can still help those in need, even if it’s done a little bit differently now.

I have been impressed with how the various organizations and agencies in our area have come together as a team to share knowledge and resources. We continue to partner with organizations such as the Minnesota Department of Health to make the best, most educated decisions and plans for you and your families. I assure you we will keep working hard to stay ahead of this situation and do whatever it takes to preserve the health and safety of our patients, staff members and community.

Thank you for your flexibility in adapting to the changes we’ve implemented at Lakewood Health System. And thank you to everyone who has been involved with the planning and execution of these plans. Even though there are unknowns, it’s times like this when you truly do see the best in people. And we will definitely get through this together.

Tim Rice
President & CEO
Lakewood Health System