SANTA CRUZ—Dignity Health Dominican Hospital announced Monday that it has received a $1 million donation, which will be dispersed to hospital employees who have helped fight the coronavirus.
The anonymous donor is a “long-time friend” of the hospital who wanted to thank the workers specifically during the Covid-19 pandemic, hospital officials said.
“To the heroes of Dominican Hospital: Thank you for standing up (and staying up!) to care for our community,” the donor stated in a letter to hospital employees. “This human kindness is what makes you heroic. Please accept this donation in recognition of and with great thanks for all that you do. And please know that my heart is with you as we seek to protect and care for each other during this challenging time.”
Chief of Philanthropy Drew Gagner said that receiving the money “was one of the greatest Fridays in my professional life.”
“What was so striking is that the donor wanted to focus exclusively on the caregivers,” he said. “Which is why the donation has been made anonymously. The focus is on the front-line caregivers and all those folks that support them.”
The money will be dispersed within the next 30 days to employees who worked from February 2019–March 2020. Part-time employees will receive $600, while full-time employees will get $800, Gagner said.
Registered nurse Amy Loudon said that the announcement came as a “huge surprise.”
“I just can’t even believe it,” she said. “That level of ‘thank you’ is just truly amazing. We’ve been feeling it from everyone and gotten so many well amazing wishes and thank yous, but this is so over-the-top.”
Loudon said that she and her team have adjusted to the pandemic since it first began to make headlines early this year.
“It’s feeling better, and it’s feeling in a way like everyone’s coming together as a team,” she said. “We’re counting on each other and protecting each other and taking time out to watch each other.”
The Dominican Hospital Foundation has established two funds in support of patients and employees during the Covid-19 pandemic and beyond:
• Dominican Emergency Preparedness Fund – This fund provides necessary resources to care for our patients during a crisis—such as the current Covid-19 pandemic—through medical supplies, medical equipment, testing, additional staffing, and other unidentified needs.
• Dominican Frontline Spirit Fund – This fund will be used to bolster the spirits of the frontline health care providers at Dominican Hospital.
To support the Dominican Hospital Foundation, call 462-7712 or visit supportdominican.org/donate.