Friday, December 08, 2006

Hospital Christmas Cheer

The local media has been feeding the public bad news stories about our local hospitals for the past two weeks. The head of ER quit the chronically short-staffed department, the CEO was relieved of his duties, the CT scanner is reportedly giving children too much radiation exposure, blah, blah, blah! The hospital my daughter works at had the OR shut down for two days this week because of a CJD scare, and tonight, the same hospital started Code Green for evacuation because the heating system broke down.
Well, here is a “good news” hospital story that happened this week on the unit where I work.
Each year, staff and volunteers prepare and serve a Christmas dinner for patients and their families. Penny is the organizer and she puts hours of work into the success of the celebration. The night shift nurses put a large turkey in the oven at midnight, and all the trimmings are brought in by various staff members. Able patients help to peel the potatoes and the warmth and smells of a home style dinner fill the entire wing of the building.
Staff and volunteers serve the patients, and music and singing accompany the meal. One staffer said, “This is really one of the best things we do all year!” And I heartily agreed.
Some of the patients have not had a turkey dinner for years, and perhaps will return again to a lonely existence outside the hospital. It was heart-warming to see how much they enjoyed the food and company.
Penny (in red) will host five dinners like this before Christmas, one for each unit in the centre. She and all the others who work hard to bring happiness to the patients are my good news heroes today.


  1. That's so wonderful! Penny sounds like a special person indeed. It's so nice to have things like this to remind us to focus on the season with love and thanks.

  2. Amidst all the bad press, it would be great if this heartwarming event was posted all over the place! Nice job to all of you. There is good all around.

  3. It's like the weather forecast - 10% chance of rain instead of 90% chance of sunshine. The media thrives on the negative.
    Christmas dinner for the shut-ins is certainly a gift of love and compassion. The staff is to be congratulated.

  4. Sounds like a nice chance to visit with patients and their families and just enjoy one another. Kudos to Penny!

  5. This is the type of event that makes Christmas memorable. We do hear too much bad news, yet there are people who quietly share love and cheer without expecting anything in return. I hope all of you have a special Christmas moment like this!


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