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Idaho Falls Mayor proclaims ‘Operation Appreciation’ week to support healthcare workers

Idaho Falls

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IDAHO FALLS — Idaho Falls Mayor Rebecca Casper is launching “Operation Appreciation” next week to honor local healthcare workers.

The declaration from Casper dedicates the entire week of Oct. 18 to have the city council, mayor and community rally around healthcare workers. Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, many say healthcare workers have been pushed to their limits in battling the virus.

“Since the crisis standards of care have gone into effect, health care workers of all stripes, including nurses, doctors, lab techs and even custodial and kitchen staff, have been putting in 12 hours days, seven days a week,” Casper said in a news release. “The strain on them physically and emotionally has got to be significant. We hope to remind them of how much their sacrifices are appreciated.”

While people are encouraged to show their support online, Casper is also inviting the community to show their support in person on Oct. 18 between 6:15 p.m. and 6:45 pm outside of Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center. Casper will give EIRMC president Jeff Sollis the official “Operation Appreciation” at the event. Afterward, Casper and the city council will head to Idaho Falls Community Hospital to give the proclamation to IFCH COO Casey Jackman.

“We hope families and businesses and everyone else who wants to join in will make a sign or a poster and come down to either EIRMC or IFCH and stand with us to say ‘thank you’ to our health care heroes,” Casper said in a statement. “We all see the news. We all know how overwhelmed our hospitals and health care facilities have been. We just wanted a simple way to show them that we care about them and the way that they care for us.”

The events outside the two hospitals coincide with healthcare worker shift changes.

Additionally, Casper invites the public to share messages of thanks, encouragement and support on social media. A Facebook frame is available on Idaho Falls’ Facebook page. People are encouraged to tag EIRMC, IFCH and favorite health care professionals with the hashtag #Operationappreciation.

Casper is expected to talk more about Operation Appreciation at Thursday’s city council meeting.