Picture above: U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown visited the COVID-19 testing site at CAS in Columbus on January 14 with members of the Ohio National Guard and Ohio State Wexner Medical Center.
U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown traveled from Washington, D.C., to his home state of Ohio on Friday, Jan. 14, to visit the COVID-19 testing site at Wexner Medical Center at Ohio State University in CAS in Columbus with leaders from the Ohio National Guard, Ohio State University, Columbus Public Health and CAS, a division of the American Chemical Society.
Senator Brown spoke with members of the Ohio National Guard who have joined healthcare workers across the state on the front lines in the battle against COVID-19.
“I know we are all exhausted by this pandemic. But we are in a much better situation than a year ago. We got shot in the arms and the workers went back to work and the kids went back to school,” Senator Brown said.
“Between vaccines and boosters and testing, we have the tools we need to protect the people of Ohio and keep workers on the job and our kids in school. And officials like these National Guard troops are the reason.
No one knows the need for clinical help better than Dr. Andrew Thomas, interim co-director and clinical director at Ohio State Wexner Medical Center. The medical center is receiving help from dozens of the more than 2,000 Ohio National Guard members who were deployed by Ohio Governor Mike DeWine in early January to relieve weary frontline workers during the pandemic.
“Sen. Brown’s visit today was truly uplifting to our staff and members of the Ohio National Guard who have tested thousands of Central Ohio residents over the past two weeks,” Dr. Thomas said, “It’s important for our frontline workers to see that Ohio’s elected leaders support them, appreciate their tireless work, and do what they can to help us all through this pandemic.”
Among the guards, Senator Brown personally thanked specialist Macy Quinn of Lancaster, who became known for singing to infants as they were swabbed and tested for COVID-19.
Picture above: Among the members of the guard, Senator Brown personally thanked specialist Macy Quinn of Lancaster.
“I’ve sung to a few different infants — ‘Let It Go’ from Frozen to one and ‘Itsy Bitsy Spider’ to another,” said Quinn, who works as a patient care assistant in the intensive care unit for Nationwide Children’s Hospital newborns when not on active duty. She now works Monday through Friday at CAS’s COVID-19 drive-thru testing site.
“Working at the Children’s helped me prepare to soothe them before a traumatic experience. With everyone, we do our best to be as kind and helpful as possible,” Quinn said.
“We are so grateful to have the opportunity to help here. We know people are tired and frustrated. It’s new for us, we have energy and we are ready to help.
Senator Brown also thanked nurse practitioners Sarah Hartfield and Lindsey Hamm. The two work in the Ohio State Department of Family and Community Medicine, but during the pandemic they have spent much of their time at Wexner Medical Center testing sites, including the CAS site, which has seen an increase from 160 tests per day to 1,000 tests per day. in just its first two weeks.
Hartfield, who has managed clinical care at the test stations since July 2020, credits the National Guard with bringing attention to their efforts and boosting morale. “Patients love it. I don’t think they’ve ever seen uniforms in a medical center before.
Picture above“We are very grateful to have the opportunity to help here,” said specialist Macy Quinn, who works at the CAS COVID-19 testing site.
Hamm agreed. “It kind of lightened our load. And they are all very kind, respectful and helpful. I noticed the kids thinking, “He’s a soldier.”
Senator Brown, who was born in Mansfield, earned a Master of Arts in Education and a Masters of Public Administration from Ohio State in 1979 and 1981, respectively. He taught at Ohio State’s Mansfield Branch campus from 1979 to 1981.
He said his upbringing at Ohio State “gave me a better understanding of state and local government and a broader and deeper understanding of budgets and the public service, and I hope it will make me a little better at this job”.