Looking Back, Moving Forward uring the past year we’ve faced a set of challenges unlike most of us have ever experienced, a journey that’s been difficult to chart and nearly impossible to predict. I continue to be inspired by the strength of the many thousands who have risen together with unyielding perseverance, their courage and compassion shining through and leading all of us forward. As the virus gained momentum, Rady Children’s found new ways to provide community leadership. A generous grant from The Conrad Prebys Foundation enabled us to forge a partnership with San Diego County government to ensure our region’s health care heroes had access to crucial personal protective equipment, securing more than 315,000 items for local hospitals, health centers and 150 human service agencies. We instituted the COVID-19 Collaborative for Children, providing ongoing testing, tracing and treatment for children and families, including those in underserved or vulnerable populations. And, as of early 2021, we have evolved this effort to become an active participant in reducing the spread of this devastating virus as an official County COVID-19 vaccination site. Our leaders, physicians and staff also quickly pivoted operations to address our new reality, all while ensuring our doors never closed and our community had uninterrupted access to care. Members of the Rady Children’s community were central to these efforts, and we could not have achieved what we did without their heartfelt support. The Helen and Will Webster Foundation 3D Innovations Lab transformed into a fast-paced production site for 3D-printed nasal swabs and face shields for use at Rady Children’s and at testing sites around the County. We also expanded our partnership with UC San Diego, forming a research group investigating and identifying solutions for multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children, a late- onset effect of the COVID-19 disease in some patients. Fifty-nine specialty areas, including pediatric urgent care, shifted to offer telemedicine visits to our patient families, and now serve thousands each month from the comfort of their homes. And when the second surge of the pandemic took hold, we reached beyond the scope of pediatric care for the first time in our history, to help ease the burden on nearby adult intensive care units. As we’ve strengthened our community to overcome COVID-19, we have proven how, when we work together, we can be prepared for whatever uncertainties tomorrow may bring. While the sacrifices have been many and the losses unfathomable, seeing what our community is capable of accomplishing gives me pause to feel immense gratitude and inspiration. My confidence for the future health of children and families in San Diego has never been greater, knowing that with the continued dedication of everyone at Rady Children’s, healthier tomorrows are just ahead. D
THANKS TO OUR CARING NETWORK!
@radychi ldrens Rady Children’s teamed up with the County of San Diego to provide COVID-19 vaccines to health care workers, first responders, community members age 65 and older, and others included in the first tiers.
@radychi ldrens Rady Children’s reimagined its annual Light the Way event so patients, families and staff could still enjoy from a safe distance.
STEPHEN JENNINGS Senior Vice President and Chief External Affairs Officer, Rady Children’s Hospital Executive Director, Rady Children’s Hospital Foundation
@teamrady Rady Children’s staff shows off the self-care baskets they made as a thank-you to health care workers caring for adult COVID-19 patients.
SPRING 2021 HEALTHY KIDS MAGAZINE 1
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