Hope Wall at Parkview's Mirro Center

The Hope Wall at Parkview Mirro Center for Research and Innovation in Fort Wayne is seen. COVID-19 vaccines are becoming available to more Hoosiers one year after the pandemic began.

It is hard to believe that our community has lived with COVID-19 for one year. One year of quarantining, masking and social distancing. One year of e-learning, meeting virtually and, for many, working from home. In that time, many of us have adapted to a new way of living, working and engaging in this great region.

Amid the myriad of changes we’ve experienced, it has been so encouraging to see bright spots appear in our community. Bright spots like people helping people with basic needs, childcare, technology, mental health support and so much more. Parkview Health also saw bright spots, such as co-workers leaning on one another, or their unwavering dedication to treating patients like family. In some cases, staying at the bedside long after their shift ended, or going the extra mile to finish lab tests or clean one more patient room. Perhaps the most visible bright spot in any organization can be seen in those co-workers who are stepping up to serve wherever they are needed. Those who are running toward the crisis, asking, “What can I do to help?”

We have all undoubtedly learned a lot about ourselves, professionally and personally, this past year. We are stronger than we think we are. We can do what we set our minds to. And it really does take a village.

As we enter a new season of hope, we are seeing a new bright spot as COVID-19 vaccines are being administered across our region by county departments of health and other designated locations, including our Parkview Mirro Center for Research and Innovation.

What makes Parkview’s vaccination clinic so special is the men and women who are serving in roles entirely different than those they typically perform. We have recruiters and administrative assistants performing patient registration, Parkview Foundation team members operating a vaccine hotline and nurses from departments throughout the health system administering vaccine, to name only a few. Many of these co-workers are choosing to serve our community in addition to their regular roles. Some have put their jobs aside to focus on our vaccination efforts. They’ve been joined by area students as well as health care organizations like Super Shot, all coming together in the fight against COVID-19.

We’ve been incredibly humbled by the outpouring of support and positive feedback we’ve received from the community about our vaccine clinic operations at the Mirro Center. And all that praise goes to those who are working day in and day out to deliver vaccines to approximately 1,000 people per day as safely and efficiently as possible. In fact, we keep a large display of the community’s kind letters and notes in the clinic’s break area, so those working can see the admiration and appreciation for their efforts.

The clinic recently administered its 50,000th dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. To the more than 400 people who have dedicated their time and talent to Parkview’s clinic, we sincerely thank you. Your efforts have gotten us to this milestone. And to those who are staffing vaccination clinics across the region — and providing much-needed hope after a challenging year — your community thanks you for your service. You ran toward the crisis.

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