During the past week I have been the recipient of services by both the Westerly Ambulance Corps and the Westerly Hospital clearly reinforcing, in my mind, how amazingly fortunate we are to have these institutions in our area.
Tha Ambulance Corps team responded in record time, and its members were extremely calming, reassuring, and professional. Even in the pouring rain, they tried to assure me that their getting soaked was no big deal! The team responded to every detail, answered every question, and members took every possible precaution. The Corps has always been an absolutely awesome organization, and we are so fortunate to have it based in Westerly.
Westerly Hospital, despite merger after merger, fortunately remains a friendly, caring, hometown hospital. The emergency room on Sunday, February 25, gave the appearance of being among the busiest places on Earth. Patients occupied every room, every corridor, every corner, and every nook and cranny. The staff remained calm, kind, caring, and efficient in a situation that could easily have become chaotic. Ambulance crews arrived, quite literally, every few minutes and still everyone was taken care of in a prompt and orderly fashion. Even call lights were answered very quickly. Lest anyone want to argue the point yes, there were a few delays after the decision to admit was made, but by that time any serious aspects were well under control for the patients waiting for rooms, and new patients were still arriving at perhaps a very slightly slower pace.
The second floor rooms were filled, an air of intense busyness was evident, and still every single staff member remained friendly, calming, and extremely helpful. Even the overflow of patients into a seldom used area of the third floor did not "rock the boat, " as the saying goes. Every patient was made to feel that he or she was the only one there. I was very impressed by the fact that my hospitalist and the staff took extra precautions to protect me in a way that I had not even considered. Since I have a transplanted kidney, and therefore a significantly compromised immune system, and since almost every room other than mine was occupied by a flu patient, the staff was extremely protective of me and they worked hard to get me back into action and discharged as quickly as possible so that I could avoid any possible contact with the now notorious flu bug.
I wish I could name every person on the Ambulance Corps team, and each staff member in the ER and on the second floor, but I know that I would miss several significant people. In any case, all were wonderful and each one is more than worthy of thanks and praise. In the sadly impersonalized and mega-corporate world of 2018, it is so important that we maintain, protect, and preserve the small town hospital and Ambulance Corps models, and that we thank and appreciate the caring, empathetic, professional individuals who so competently staff these institutions.
Mary E. RichardsonWesterly