My sincerest thanks to everyone at PPMC who displayed the highest levelof commitment to our patients during Hurricane Sandy. With your help anddedication, we were able to provide exceptional care to our hospitalizedpatients as well as to those who were able to weather the storm to come in. Over120 Presbyterian staff stayed overnight on Monday evening to assure continuityof care, many of them working double or extended shifts. We know that many ofyou placed the well being of our patients over your own personal situations,and weathered some very difficult conditions to be here.

I am proud of the way we worked together across clinical andadministrative teams. From an emergency preparedness perspective, we beganmonitoring the weather reports as early as a week ahead of time to make sure wehad the most accurate information. We were in touch with senior leadership atthe corporate level and across all other entities to ensure a consistent planof action and effective communication with all members of our staff. We werealso in constant contact with other hospitals in the region, and had regularupdate calls with Philadelphia’s Emergency Operations Center.

Together, we were able to overcome many roadblocks and challengesincluding transportation difficulties and staffing shortages. Thanks to thehard work and efforts of many, we had enough hands on deck in the commandcenter to field calls from staff and were able to make arrangements fortransportation services where possible, and sleeping accommodations for allstaff who needed a place to rest. Representatives from Safety, Security,Nursing, Administration, Public Affairs, Information Systems and othersupporting departments worked to align central coordination for information dissemination,problem solving and decision making. Food and Nutrition Services stepped up tohelp make sure all faculty, staff and patients were fed and taken care of throughoutthe access emergency

The staff response at PPMC was incredible. People stepped up and, inmany cases, went above and beyond to make sure they arrived safely for theirshifts. I’ve heard countless stories of members across many teams who walkedmiles in hurricane conditions to make it to their shifts on time, and otherswho assisted patients’ families with making hotel reservations and otheraccommodations when they were unable to get home. Commitments like these arewhat make Penn Presbyterian one of the top hospitals in the state, and I cannotexpress my gratitude enough to each one of you for your contributions andcommitments during the hurricane.

-Michele Volpe, CEO andexecutive director, PPMC