Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Rand to launch 'Help Desk'

By CLEOPATRA MURPHY

Freeport News Reporter

As the Rand Memorial Hospital continues in its efforts to create an environment that is more welcoming to its clientele, the health care facility will be introducing a new help desk program in January 2011.
"The purpose of the desk is to extend that additional courtesy to our public," said Sharon Williams hospital administrator.
She explained that with the limited number of staff at the facility, there are some areas where it falls short and at Grand Bahama Health Services they are hoping the program will pick up on some of those areas.
Williams noted that volunteers are going to be instrumental to the functioning of the program.

So far she noted that the facility has recruited volunteers from two churches on the island - Agape House and Freeport Bible Church.

"What we have been doing for the past few weeks is working with the persons who will be assisting us with the program to educate them in all aspects of Grand Bahama Health Services," Williams supplied.

She noted that persons who volunteer with the help desk will assist hospital clients with a number of their needs from providing directions to the various departments at the Rand Memorial Hospital to providing additional help to persons situated on the wards.

"They would assist us in escorting our clients once they are discharged to their vehicles and also as necessary they are also looking at engaging in a reading ministry," Williams provided.

She explained that one of the volunteers had suggested the idea.

Williams noted that in addition to reading to young children on the Paediatric Ward, there are adults on the other wards that may appreciate having someone read to them be it from a novel or the Bible.

She explained that the health care facility is turning to the community to make it a success and will welcome volunteers who have the time and are willing to commit some of their time to the patients at the Rand.

She added that Grand Bahama Health Services had reached out to several churches and the ones who are participating thus far responded, but the help desk program is by no means confined to persons from those church congregations. Anyone is welcomed to assist.

"The only thing that we are asking of our persons is that they be willing, able and prepared to lend a helping hand to their fellow men and that they have the time to do so to assist us," Williams said.

She added that the volunteers will be used at the Rand Memorial Hospital to operate the help desk from the hours of 8:00 a.m. until 8:30 in the evening.

Volunteers she noted can choose when and how much time they are going to give during those periods.

"We look forward as the program grows to have at least two persons on at once so that one will remain at the desk while another one will be escorting patients to and from the wards or wherever is necessary," Williams said.

She added that persons will be able to contact the help desk by calling the Rand Memorial Hospital and they will be referred to the help desk line at extension 37.

The help desk she said is an extension of the health care facility's Patient Advocacy Program.

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