In the early months of 2020, the COVID-19 virus brought most of the world to a standstill. Hospitals, on the other hand, were gearing up for a challenge like none other.
Throughout the pandemic, doctors, nurses and other hospital staff were on the front lines, caring for both COVID and non-COVID patients during a historic health crisis.
Now, more than two years later, nearly 150 hospital staff from across Alabama are sharing why they chose health care as a career and why they’ve stayed. Their stories, collected by the Alabama Hospital Association (AHA), are being shared online and through social media in recognition of Nurses Week and Hospital Week, which both take place this month.
“During these important weeks, we celebrate and thank our hospital staff and physicians for their extraordinary talents, their drive to provide the best care possible and their compassion,” said Dr. Don Williamson, AHA president.
The videos and photos highlight employees from all aspects of hospital care – not only frontline staff, but also the thousands of men and women who work in laboratories, food service and other departments that support hospital operations. With all of these individuals, a recurring theme is resilience and a willingness to serve precisely when their communities are most vulnerable.
“Almost every day we hear stories about the shortage of workers in all areas of our economy,” Williamson said. “That’s why it’s so inspiring to hear from these men and women who early on chose a career in health care and who remain dedicated to that calling.”
Some 90,000 Alabamians work in hospitals around the state with another 96,000 jobs created indirectly, Williamson said. “Health care not only has an economic impact of about $20 billion on our state, but it also provides jobs with exceptional career paths … jobs that have purpose and are never boring.”
Founded in 1921, the AHA is a statewide trade organization that assists member hospitals in effectively serving the health care needs of Alabamians through advocacy, representation, education and service. Learn more at alaha.org.