Willis-Knighton opens day care to support employees; second one to open Mar. 25

Willis-Knighton opens day care to support employees; second one to open Mar. 25

SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) - Willis-Knighton Health System has opened a day care to help employees. They say it’s the least they can do for their employees fighting the coronavirus on the front lines.

“We knew almost immediately that the healthcare workers that are providing care at all four of our facilities would be affected with their children being dismissed from schools,” CAO Brian Crawford said. “So we put our heads together to try and come up with a plan where we could implement our own day care.”

It’s been two weeks since Willis-Knighton Health System opened their Willis the Bear Day care at their WK Fitness & Wellness Center at 2474 Greenwood Road.

“That’s the first day care we set up and it filled up quickly,” Crawford said. “Obviously, with nurses and doctors and support staff, they have children that need to be taken care of so they can take of the sick in our community. That was so successful that we are opening up a second day care Wednesday at Willis-Knighton in Pierremont for our workers in the southern part of the city and that will hold about 45 children as well. So, overall, 90 children and we will expand if necessary.”

Crawford says they have partnered up with staff from Northwestern State University’s Child and Development network to provide care and activities for the children. He says they do need art supplies to keep the children busy.

“Anyone who has got some art supplies, if they could deliver those here to the day care center at our fitness center on Greenwood Road, that would be greatly appreciated,” Crawford said. “It will help those youngsters stay busy and occupy their time.”

Crawford says opening up day cares to take weight off of their employees is the least they can do.

“As an administrator I see it firsthand,” Crawford said. “I see the concern on the healthcare providers faces when they come in. Their screened, just like everyone else, we’ve cut down to no visitors at the hospital except under extenuating circumstances, but our healthcare workers continue to come in every day. You see the doctors, the nurses, the cafeteria workers, the maintenance people still coming in every day in the face of something that can be a devastating and life changing illness. But this is what they have always done. Some people may be just noticing the healthcare workers for the first time, and call them heroes, and they are out there fighting this, and they do this every day. Even before this happened and when this is over with they will still be here at Willis-Knighton fighting for the health and safety of this community just like they always have. They truly are heroes and we can’t say enough about them or do enough for them.”

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