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Pete’s Perspective: Opportunities for Connection

  • Category: CEO Update
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Pete’s Perspective: Opportunities for Connection

Media Contact: Karina Rusk

As we celebrate the holidays, our healthcare system also celebrates a year of returns to some of our traditional pre-pandemic events and programs. Like the holidays, these opportunities for connection bring people together and uplift spirits, with outreach sparking motivation.

  • Our Walk With a Doc relaunched in February. Ten events were held this year with dozens of people gathering at Fort Ord National Monument and elsewhere to hear from our providers about pressing health concerns we face locally: diabetes, heart disease, the opioid crisis, to name a few.
  • That same month, we resumed on-campus blood drives. Generously supported by our staff and community, 2022 donations resulted in enough blood to save up to 417 lives.
  • The Salinas Valley Health cafeteria, with its great food and beautifully relaxing fountain, re-opened to visitors in April, once again offering a comfortable place for patient family members and friends to regroup over a delicious meal – something that can make all the difference.
  • Mended Hearts, sharing support for heart patients and their families since 2010, resumed its in-person meetings in May. While virtual participation remains an option, the energy generated through face-to-face engagement in this peer network group is amazing.
  • We welcomed back more of the smiling faces of all our volunteers, including our four-legged Pet Therapy helpers. Interested in joining our team of specially trained volunteers and Service League members? Email
  • Our robust complement of student-oriented offerings engaged youth from elementary school through college level, inspiring our future leaders to consider healthcare as a calling.

The year 2022 was one marked by cautious optimism. Preparation, ingenuity and perseverance served us well during the pandemic. They continue to guide our path forward. As we get ready to usher in a New Year, we reflect on the spirit and energy of these newly re-established and invigorated connections.

We have come a long way since our opening in 1953. We have also come a long way since March 2020. I am excited about how our future will develop as we reach further in helping our community rise in good health, and I am deeply grateful for a team that supports our growth as a resource for the wellbeing of everyone.

The holidays bring with them many reasons to celebrate – family and friends, good health, and work that is meaningful. They also bring great hope and optimism for the year to come.

My best to you this season and always.

Be safe and be well.

– Pete

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