Tobey Hospital, nurses given donations to help fight coronavirus

Apr 19, 2020

Tobey Hospital and nurses are working to treat coronavirus patients with the help of donations from various companies.

Enel North America, a power company, has donated $20,000 each to Tobey Hospital and St. Luke’s Hospital in New Bedford, as part of $1.3 million in donations to organizations across the country working to fight the virus.

“COVID-19 has caused unprecedented economic challenges for critical service organizations in many communities and we hope our support can provide some sense of relief,” said Enrico Viale, the head of Enel North America. “From rural hospitals to first responders, local schools and food banks, these organizations and their workers are on the frontlines and we thank essential workers everywhere for their extraordinary and unwavering response to this crisis.” 

Tobey Hospital nurses also received donations of FDA-approved KN95 respirator masks through the Massachusetts Nurses Association. The association is lobbying for all nurses providing care to any patients to have this protective gear because the disease can be spread by those without symptoms.

“These medical-grade masks are essential to the safety and well-being of our nurses and healthcare professionals,” said Donna Kelly-Williams, RN and MNA president. “Without this PPE, our frontline caregivers are just as susceptible to COVID-19 as every visitor and patient they interact with and care for. If most of our frontline caregivers were to become sick, the entire healthcare system would be compromised. But thanks to this donation, our members can care for patients during this pandemic safely and without fear.”

The association gave 100 of these masks to Tobey Hospital, and is working to distribute more gear. 

“Our nurses have been 100 percent dedicated to caring for each and every Tobey patient since this crisis began, and too often they were doing so without the right PPE. With these donated masks now in the hands of our nurses, they can finally feel safe when they are at the bedside," said Sharon Miksch, Tobey RN and Chair of the MNA Bargaining Unit.