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CEO Corner

The year of 2020 has been anything but normal. The Covid-19 pandemic turned our nation, state and community upside down,

and what started off as a year full of promise, quickly turned into a year of challenges. Challenges for our hospital, our schools, our elderly, just to name a few. It divided us politically as never before and tested our resolve in a way that was new to our generation. But, as our 2nd president, John Adams said, “Every problem is an opportunity in disguise”.

The staff of WCRMC and the citizens of Washington County have been tested like never before, and yet, in the face of all this adversity, we have done things that have proved our strength, our training and our endurance. When there were no transfer beds available, we cared for very complex patients, we learned new equipment and new techniques to disinfect rooms and common areas. We fully embraced telemedicine technology, new medicines, new testing devices and processes. No effort was spared to find and purchase the necessary PPE to keep our staff and our patients safe. We persevered.

In the midst of the pandemic, WCRMC continued to grow and develop. We opened the Intermediate Care Unit with Electronic

Intensive Care telemedicine technology in partnership with Emory University, and implemented ER and Inpatient telemedicine in partnership with Augusta University. We also upgraded our technology with a new patient monitoring telemetry system, A new 3D Mammography system, new endoscopes for the OR, new C-Arm x-ray unit, new portable x-ray unit, and a new telephone system.

We also made necessary capital improvements to the facility, re-roofing the Extended Care Facility, installing a new digital sign, renovating Physical Therapy and many other areas. We’re not done. More improvements to the campus are coming in 2021.

I am proud of how the staff and physicians of WCRMC have sacrificed this year, putting our patients ahead of their personal lives and families. They worked long hours and extra shifts often clad in heavy, hot masks, gowns, gloves and other PPE. Often they had to stay away from their children and elderly family members for long periods to protect them from COVID-19.

Thank you to the citizens of Washington County who supported WCRMC during this tough year, for understanding that the strict visitation policy was necessary to keep our patients, staff and other family members safe. Thank you to everyone that did their part to help slow the spread of COVID-19 by following CDC guidelines for social distancing, and wearing a mask.

2021 rolls in with a lot of optimism for a better year, led by the approval of several COVID-19 vaccines. Please get vaccinated when the opportunity comes.

More exciting improvements and new technology are planned for 2021 but our biggest and best investment is our staff!

Happy New Year!

David Flanders

CEO, Washington County Regional Medical Center