Taking into consideration the latest COVID-19 (Coronavirus) directives from both the federal and local authorities, Good Samaritan Health Centers of Gwinnett is taking aggressive steps to help curb the spread of the virus and keep our staff, volunteers, and patients safe. Our plan of action is to focus on the health and well-being of our team members while continuing to deliver the highest standards of medical and dental care we can. At this time, we are equipped to continue normal operations for the next month. Beyond that, it depends on the availability of critical supplies. Many of our routine items are not in stock or are being rationed.
We have plans in place to protect everyone who receives care, works, or volunteers at one of our facilities. For the health of our clients, patients, and staff, it does mean most people visiting us will be greeted by a series of questions that help us determine who really needs to be in the clinic and who can be temporarily turned away for their own wellbeing. This screening process is not our typical “everyone is welcome” style, but it does help to reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19. We are also contacting our patients in advance of scheduled appointments to prescreen them before they leave home.
We have temporarily suspended group meetings and classes, tours, nonessential volunteer opportunities, and in-person meetings during this time to help keep our community safe. We will continue to monitor this very fluid situation and as circumstances change, we will update our plans and notify all affected parties.
We recognize that our patients need us now more than ever. As we continue to serve them in this unsettling environment, we appreciate your partnership and all you are doing to ensure the health and safety of our community by supporting us, Gwinnett’s largest and most comprehensive charitable safety-net provider. To be sure, we will be challenged if our patients, who provide the majority of our financial support, are furloughed or lose their jobs during this crisis. Your contributions will help see us through that challenge, and we will be grateful for every dollar you may give us.
Let me change the topic. Let’s remember Matthew 8:23-27, the story Jesus Calms the Storm. A quick recap – Jesus is asleep in a boat during a raging storm and his frightened disciples awaken him while shouting “We’re going to drown!” Jesus replied, “You of little faith, why are you so afraid?” Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the waves, and it became completely calm.
Now imagine the disciples actually learned all the lessons that Jesus was trying to teach them and one day a few weeks later they find themselves and Jesus in the same boat, in the same body of water, but encountering a more violent storm. And once again, Jesus is asleep. But this time, the disciples look out at the storm, then back at Jesus, and then to each other. They smile, nod, and kick back to get comfortable. And one says, “Don’t worry; Jesus is in the boat with us!”
We are in the midst of a storm like no other in recent memory. All the unknowns are scary; we all have reason to be concerned if not flat out afraid. But dear brothers and sisters, take heart; let us be learned. Jesus is in the boat with us! Have faith, this storm will pass.