NEW LONDON – Members of the screening team at the entrance to New London Hospital received a surprise welcome and warm appreciation on Thursday for their unwavering perseverance and support throughout the ongoing novel coronavirus pandemic.
Fellow staff members and hospital leaders gathered in the early afternoon for a pinning ceremony to officially name the screening team at the facility’s entrance as “Heroes of Healthcare” for identifying and implementing strategies to ensure patient and staff safety. The New London Hospital entrance screening team includes Paul Bosquet, Amy Carney, Nancy Collins, Susie Mochel, Lynn Williams and Deborah Wood.
The award is one of seven announced last week by NH Healthcare Heroes, a 2020 effort developed by the New Hampshire Sector Partnerships Initiative (SPI) healthcare sector team to highlight roles and opportunities essential to help others while working in the field of health. This is the second year that the award — whose recipients are determined in part by nominations submitted by colleagues, family members, friends and patients — has been given to healthcare workers in New Hampshire.
Tom Manion, President and CEO of New London Hospital, opened the pinning ceremony by reflecting on the role of the team and its impact on the facility and the community.
“If we think back, if you look back just two years ago, that job didn’t even exist before. It wasn’t something we thought about in a healthcare facility of this magnitude,” he said. he said: “If you want to talk about living the change, this team, I think from one week to the next, had something new. . . We change things every day and try to ensure that our patients, our staff, [and] all who entered this hospital in good health. And without them, we wouldn’t have been able to keep all these healthy people in our community.
Sally Patton, head nurse at New London Hospital, who nominated the team to the NH Healthcare Heroes Committee for the award, echoed Manion’s feelings and appreciation for each member of the team.
“During the first weeks and months of the pandemic, it became clear that we needed to adapt our procedures to stop the spread of COVID-19. Screening team members are often the first faces patients see when they enter our buildings, and they endure the daily hardships of patients suffering from COVID-related fatigue,” she said. “Each of our selection team has played their part with patience, understanding and continued dedication to such a monumental effort.”
Roxie Severance, Healthcare Sector Advisor for SPI, thanked the team and all healthcare workers at New London Hospital for what they are doing.
“We continue to see how critical healthcare workers are for New Hampshire,” she said. “It takes a whole community of professionals – from nurses and licensed practical nurses to cooks, maintenance technicians and dentists – to run our health care system. We are thrilled to honor each of them and share their unique stories, so that they serve as inspiration for those considering or contemplating a career in healthcare.
In her closing remarks, Manion, while acknowledging the work that has been done so far, reminded us that we are all still in the game.
“Thank you for all the hard work you’ve done and are still doing because remember we’re still in the middle of this pandemic,” Manion said. “It is not finished yet.”
A full list of winners includes:
— Concord Area Winner: Laura “Beth” Nagy, Director of Rehabilitation Services, New Hampshire Hospital in Concord.
— Lakes Region Winner: Ashley Douthart, Behavioral Health Lead, HealthFirst Family Care Center in Franklin.
— Monadnock Area Winner: Emilee Guyette, Environmental Services Manager, Cedarcrest Center for Disabled Children in Keene.
— North Country Region Winner: Laurie Fellows, Licensed Practical Nurse, Cottage Hospital in Woodsville.
— Seacoast Region Winner: Stacy Dionne, Clinical Nurse Manager, Lamprey Health Care in Raymond.
– NH Southern Region Winner: Matt Bouchie, Homeless Outreach Coordinator, Mental Health Center of Greater Manchester.
– Upper Valley Region Winner: Entry Screening Team at New London Hospital.
The NH Healthcare Heroes effort is sponsored in part by the NH Office of Economic Affairs through a grant from the U.S. Department of Labor and through the support of our generous sponsors, which include the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation, New Hampshire Health Care Association , the New Hampshire Sector Partnership Initiative (SPI), North Country Healthcare, Northeast Delta Dental, NH Needs Caregivers! initiative, Southern New Hampshire Area Health Education Center and River Valley Community College. For more information and to follow the stories of our heroes and finalists, follow the effort on Facebook at “HealthcareHeroesNH”.