Avera is celebrating National Hospital Week this week

ABERDEEN, S.D.(Press Release)- This week, Avera celebrates the heroes who work within its facilities, including clinics, hospitals, senior living centers and more.

National Hospital Week is May 9-15, National Nurses Week is May 6-12 and National Skilled Nursing Care Week is May 9-15.

“Our celebration this year – called ‘Celebrating YOU’ – captures these important observances, yet goes beyond to include the bigger picture,” said Bob Sutton, President and CEO of Avera Health.

Avera has 19,700 employees in 315 locations in 100 communities across five states in the Upper Midwest. The Avera footprint covers 72,000 square miles and includes a full continuum of care: hospitals, clinics, senior care, at-home and hospice care, telehealth, sports and fitness centers, home medical equipment and more.

“Caregivers are truly the heroes of this time,” Sutton said. They have varied roles that include physician, advanced practice provider, nurse, technician, technologist, certified nursing assistant, therapist, educator, case manager, social worker, counselor and more.

“Yet we also want to celebrate any and all who fill other roles that fulfill the Avera mission to make a positive impact in the lives and health of persons and communities,” Sutton said.

It’s fitting that caregivers are celebrated after a year of pandemic stressors that greatly impacted health care facilities and the people who work in them.

During the past year, Avera cared for over 5,000 COVID patients in its hospitals and over 5,000 COVID patients through its at-home program. In addition, Avera teams have tested and vaccinated hundreds of thousands of people.

“Our caregivers remain well-prepared and willing to help even as this pandemic continues. In our hospitals and ICUs, they have supported people who were fighting for their lives. Through our Avera@Home agencies, they delivered top quality care at home, reserving hospital beds for the sickest patients. At our long-term care centers, they have supported and protected people within this vulnerable population. At the same time, they cared for people who have the full range of illnesses and injuries, because life doesn’t stop happening in the midst of a pandemic. We are so proud of them,” said Todd Forkel, Regional President and CEO. “This year, like never before, our teams overcame many challenges and responded with lifesaving care.”

On the city council meeting held on Monday, May 3rd, Mayor Travis Schnaunaman made this proclamation.