Commemorating a year of COVID-19

As we mark the one-year anniversary of COVID-19, and reflect back on these unprecedented times, I want to take this opportunity to express my personal gratitude to you, our amazing donors, for your incredible support.

I have been honoured and moved, every day since the pandemic began, by the kindness and caring you’ve demonstrated for our hospital, and especially for our frontline Queensway Carleton Hospital (QCH) team. Your generous donations of urgently needed funds, Personal Protective Equipment, meals, treats and gifts, and your thoughtful words of appreciation and encouragement have meant the world to us.

In the midst of so much hardship and loss for our entire community, I am very pleased to be able to share with you this week, some great news from our Foundation and hospital.

I am excited to tell you that our COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic has just opened – a truly momentous occasion that provides hope for everyone in our community.

This week, I also had the pleasure of helping organize a very special event for the team in the QCH Intensive Care Unit (ICU). To mark the one-year anniversary of the pandemic, our ICU physicians chose to make a generous donation in recognition of the outstanding work of every member of the ICU team.  Each one was nominated as a Champion of Care during a surprise, team celebration. It was an emotional and joyous event that warmed everyone’s hearts and brought tears to my eyes.

The good news does not stop there. Last week, we learned that once again, Newsweek magazine has named QCH the number one hospital in Ottawa. We are thrilled with the announcement! It is a true testament to the excellent healthcare our hospital team provides to our patients and community.

On Friday, March 5th, QCH also received $9 million in funding from the Ministry of Health and the go-ahead to  begin the rebuild and expansion of our Mental Health Unit. This is welcome news, especially with mental illness on the rise since the onset of COVID-19. With the staggering $6 million raised by our amazing Hopes Rising Foundation donors, our renovated Mental Health Unit will be a beacon of hope for everyone who needs mental healthcare. Thanks to our campaign chairs, community champions and donors, who have done extraordinary work raising awareness and funds for this important project. This truly is a moment to celebrate!

I want to thank you, as well for being here, for all of us at QCH and the Foundation. We could not have done what we did this past year without you.

Please stay safe, social distance, and follow all Ottawa Public Health guidelines. Now is not the time to let our guard down, we are on the home stretch and hopefully soon can all be together again.

Have a wonderful weekend.

With sincere gratitude,

Shannon Gorman, President & CEO, Queensway Carleton Hospital Foundation