The past few months have been some of the craziest days many have ever encountered in their lifetimes. With the inescapable COVID-19 pandemic looming over everyone’s heads, a new sense of normalcy has been forced upon me. I definitely would have never expected to be writing from this perspective, in my house, quarantined yet hopeful. I don’t know how situations will be next week, let alone next year.
There is a huge gap in American health care. Although there are different views to this complex multi-faceted issue, and despite the agenda one may support, I believe most people will at least acknowledge the presence of an imbalance of health care support in our communities. We read and hear about the inequities all the time: “the healthcare system is broken,” “socio-economic status plays a large role in health outcomes,” “social determinants of health.” Some choose to fight against with emotion, some choose to nod their heads in blind agreement. Over these next few months, I hope to finally understand these complex issues.
I am working with the health policy and health equity department at Families USA. I look forward to giving my time and effort to the quintessential goal of a healthier society. It’s unclear of the best way to achieve a healthier future. But if it was already clear, passionate, talented, and driven people wouldn’t be dedicating their lives to these roles. I wish to pose the outstanding question of “how?” How can we best go about achieving a state of perfect health? How can I help in our efforts to reach this ambitious goal?
I was sitting in my desk from home. Noon struck, and I opened the Microsoft Teams link to say hello to the first few new faces. The first thing I remember is saying hello to Jewel and Gillian, our Human Resource directors. After the logistics were sorted out, I was thrusted into our monthly all staff meeting. That was a bit unexpected, to say the least. Over Zoom, I saw the faces of every member of Families USA, from departments spanning Federal Relations to Communications, from job titles from Executive Director to new staff members like myself.
It pleasantly surprises me how dedicated people are to a vision of a better future. From my first week of work with Families USA, I’ve been met with warm open arms. The first day included numerous meetings and introductions. From the initial Human Resources meeting to setup my email and virtual working platform, to individual meetings with my mentor and supervisor, I felt the energy in everyone. Their collective passion and will to achieve a healthier society cannot be understated.
I worry how our work transitions to a virtual platform. From my first week, I notice that much of our work involves meetings with individuals within and outside our organization. How can we facilitate these discussions during this pandemic? I am anticipating some bumps along the way, but I’m confident that our organization will overcome these inconveniences. I look forward to a great and productive road ahead.