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Hello, Southwest Florida. I hope you are all safe and healthy. Well, we have certainly flattened the curve on COVID-19—thanks, in large part, to our amazing health care staff members who have worked tirelessly to ensure the safety of our Southwest Florida community.
But there is still a lot we don’t know about this virus. And while communities across the nation reopen their shops, restaurants and beaches, we are reminded of the many safety precautions we must adhere to. We’re almost half a year into this crisis, so we’re not in the beginning nor at the end. Instead, we’re at the beginning of the end.
Our community has done an incredible job of adapting to a “new normal”—observing social distancing, thoroughly washing hands and wearing face masks all help to control the spread of the coronavirus. This attention to safety is a major reason why places are reopening, so we must be diligent to continue these practices.
Speaking of reopening, NCH Healthcare System is proud to say that we are up and running at full capacity. In fact, we have been for quite some time. And I give credit to our staff, physicians, nurses and administrators for implementing such comprehensive and meticulous safety protocols to protect and care for our employees and our community.
Care is at the center of our mission at NCH. Patient care is why we do this job—to ensure that not only patients are healthy, but our community as well. And if the COVID-19 crisis has taught us anything, it’s that you can never be too careful. That is why we’ve put safety at the core of patient care.
Patients in Bonita and Estero can safely visit our health care facilities to meet with their doctors, undergo elective surgeries or— in the event of an emergency—visit our ER. All departments and staff are equipped with personal protective equipment to ensure that our patients are being taken care of safely and effectively.
Where we’ll be in six months, no one knows. While many experts are working diligently to find a vaccine for COVID-19, all we can do is band together to keep our community and ourselves safe.
NCH has been blessed to receive an outpouring of donations from our community. Restaurants have delivered food to our staff members and donors have given money to help purchase equipment during these trying times. Every donation, letter, poster, card and prayer has been felt and appreciated by our team.
The power of the human spirit is truly inspirational, and it is strong in Southwest Florida. Please don’t be afraid to visit us if you need help or feel sick. We are here to serve you and are proud to care for you with safety and compassion. Thank you and stay safe.

Paul Hiltz, FACHE, is the president and CEO of NCH Healthcare System. NCH has medical facilities throughout Collier County and Southwest Florida. To find a location, visit