The community has given back to frontline aged care and hospital staff at Mercy Health in Victoria.

Staff at Werribee Mercy Hospital received 200 care packs courtesy of the supermarket giant, Coles containing shampoos, deodorants, face and hand creams, bags of lollies, fruit and nut bars and other treats.

Mercy Health General Manager, Human Resources, Karen Cicero, said a challenge then was to determine a fair way of allocating the donated gifts.

“It is stating the obvious that some areas of our hospitals have been under enormous pressure, and in this case we really have tried to reward those who have been at the forefront in the fight against this horrendous virus,” Karen said.

While Mercy Health was not the only recipient of the care packs – about 26 metropolitan and regional hospitals benefitted from the gifts. Werribee staff could not have been more grateful for the corporate generosity.

Staff at 20 of Mercy Health’s Victorian residential aged care homes and Mercy Hospital for Women at Heidelberg have also been the recipients of gifts.

The Sisters of Mercy and Buddhist organisation, the Tzu Chi Foundation, both delivered around 2000 masks.

Mercy Place Fernhill’s Service Manager Josh Wonder, who oversees the Sandringham home, said the Sister of Mercy’s handcrafted masks were particularly stylish and therefore staff were ‘very quick to put their hands up.’

“I told our staff that they were complimentary and a short time later, I checked the room where they’d been left and they were all gone,” Josh said.

Group CEO of Mercy Health Adjunct Professor Stephen Cornelissen said it was just so characteristically practical of the Sisters to come up with a quick and positive reaction to Victoria’s predicament.

Nurse Unit Manager of MHW’s Central Sterilising Service Christine Wittwer said the masks from Tzu Chi could not have been more gratefully received and had been shared among the hospital’s patients, visitors and some staff.

“Personal protective equipment is a critical asset. These particular masks met the highest of protection standards and we are indebted to the support of the Foundation,” Christine said.


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