MOUNT KISCO – On the one-year anniversary of the first COVID-19 patient admission, approximately 50 to 100 people, including the Mount Kisco Fire Department, patient families and visitors, gathered on walkways lined with luminaries around Northern Westchester Hospital (NWH) to remember those who were lost to the pandemic and honor the hospital’s dedicated health care professionals at the change of shift.
“This was a significant week at Northern Westchester Hospital as we recognized the day that we admitted our first COVID-19 positive patient on March 11, 2020, and reflected on what the past year has meant for our entire organization,” says NWH executive director Derek Anderson. “We are incredibly proud of the resiliency and dedication of our team members and so grateful to the community, which rallied around us with their continued support. Over the past few days, we have had several opportunities to recognize our team members for the outstanding care they have provided over the past year and for the sacrifices, they made in their personal lives so that they could be here for our patients and community. We also paid tribute to the lives lost during the pandemic.”
One particularly moving moment was the change of shift recognition held on Thursday. Hospital leadership came together to greet team members as they arrived or departed from their shifts. Each team member was invited to create a luminary bag on which they shared a memory or word of inspiration.
Each bag contained a prayer card that included the verse read by hospital chaplain Reverend Angela Maddalone during a moment of silence earlier this week. The luminary bags also included a tea light, which staff lit before placing their bag in a growing lineup of tributes throughout the entryways. On Thursday evening, the luminaries were brought outside to ‘spread the light’ across the campus at the end of the day. Visitors were invited to join team members as the Mount Kisco Fire Department rang a bell at 7pm to honor those who were lost during the pandemic. Large spotlights illuminated the campus, spreading light through the community.
Northwell Health is New York State’s largest health care provider and private employer, with 23 hospitals, 830 outpatient facilities and more than 16,600 affiliated physicians. We care for over two million people annually in the New York metro area and beyond, thanks to philanthropic support from our communities. Our 75,000 employees – 18,900 nurses and 4,800 employed doctors, including members of Northwell Health Physician Partners – are working to change health care for the better. We’re making breakthroughs in medicine at the Feinstein Institutes for Medical Research. We’re training the next generation of medical professionals at the visionary Donald and Barbara Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell and the Hofstra Northwell School of Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies.