I love the arrival of spring. There is something so uplifting about the sense of renewal, hope and optimism.  This spring that feeling couldn’t be more relevant. We are cautiously optimistic about the increasing number of vaccinated people in our communities and the hope for a return to normalcy on the horizon.

MelroseWakefield Healthcare has been busy running vaccination clinics over the past few months, in accordance with the state’s guidelines.  We successfully vaccinated our staff, local health care workers, first responders, and thousands of our patients who’ve met the vaccination eligibility requirements.

COVID-19 vaccine

One of my favorite recent moments was watching one of our patients, 103-year old Mona Jeanne Somerville, receive her vaccine in our clinic. Mona Jeanne has lived through two pandemics, two world wars and the Great Depression, and is looking forward to spending time with her 27 great grandchildren and five great, great grandchildren. She told reporters that she plans to “go wild” when she is fully vaccinated and the pandemic is over! Watch her story here.

Mona Jeanne Somerville received her vaccine

Once we began vaccinating people, I visibly sensed a real shift in the moods of our staff members and even visitors to the hospital.

It has been a long year for our staff and they have performed valiantly. We recently marked one-year since we began our pandemic journey with a Moment of Remembrance. We shared our thoughts and reflected on the sacrifice and resilience of our teams, as well as acknowledged the pain of our communities, patients and their loved ones. You can read about the moment here, which we shared with staff virtually.

As part of our remembrance, plans are underway for the planting of more than 860 spring-time flowers in recognition of the hospitalized COVID-19 patients who came through our doors in the first year as a symbol of honor and hope.

Flowers of Remembrance

Our chief medical officer, Dr. Steven Sbardella described what we are seeing to a local reporter when he said, “we know the light is at the end of the tunnel, but we don’t know how long the tunnel is.”  

It is important to remember that until we reach the end of that tunnel, we all need to remain diligent in keeping our families, friends, neighbors and ourselves safe by continuing to follow the protocols that have gotten us this far… wearing masks, washing our hands and maintaining social distance…and now getting the vaccine when it is offered to you.

Join me in welcoming spring and all of the hope it brings. Stay safe and stay well.