Mercy Health Foundation Greater Lima

Chaplains like Janice Burns-Watson are using iPads purchased by donations to keep patients and families connected. The video chats provide a more meaningful connection and give the family peace of mind to see their loved one, even though they can’t visit in person.

Donations from Associate Donors help Patients have Virtual Visits with their Loved Ones Who Can’t Come to the Hospital

Being a patient in the hospital can be lonely even during the best of times. But because of donations from associates and community donors, patients can connect with family and friends virtually through the use of technology during the COVID-19 crisis.

Donations helped purchase iPads for the chaplains at Mercy Health — St. Rita’s Medical Center, Greater Lima, to help patients keep in touch with family while visitation is limited because of COVID-19.

Chaplain Janice Burns-Watson has seen how important that connection can be, to both patients and their loved ones.

“We’ve been able to use them with patients whose family are unable to be with them while making important care decisions,” Janice said. “It can be so touching when they are able to see each other. The families feel better when they can see how the patient is doing both physically and emotionally, and I’ve seen patients just light up when they see their loved ones. It is so much more meaningful than just a phone call.”

Janice expects the iPads to be put to great use going forward, even after COVID-19, and is very grateful to donors who support this program.

“This is such a blessing for the families we’ve been able to use it for,” Janice said. “While this is no replacement for the family’s presence, it makes it a little easier. It is so lonely for patients right now.”