Cronic donates tablets to Wellstar hospital for COVID-19 patients

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Pictured, from left, are Scott Burfitt, Chief Operating Officer, Wellstar Spalding Regional Hospital; Tamara Ison, President, Wellstar Spalding Regional Hospital; Kathleen Smith, Regional Development Officer, Wellstar Foundation; and Wanda Cronic Howell, Dealer, Cronic Automotive Group. The group gathered when the three Cronic auto dealerships donated 25 tablets to the hospital for use of COVID-19 patients needing to communicate with their families.

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Griffin: The Cronic Automotive Group presented 25 Samsung Galaxy tablets to the Wellstar Spalding Regional Hospital for use with COVID-19 patients and others who are prohibited from having family at their side during their hospitalization.

The presentation was made by Wanda Cronic Howell, the dealer at Cronic Chevrolet Buick GMC, Cronic Nissan, and Cronic Chrysler Dodge Jeep RAM on Thursday September 24.

“The great tragedy during the current pandemic is that many who suffer from this disease are quarantined away from their families and they are unable to see loved ones,” Mrs Howell said. “This donation should allow those patients to communicate with their loved ones, even when they cannot be in the same room with them.”

This need was expressed as essential by healthcare workers who are treating isolated patients—quarantined due to COVID-19 infection and those in the ICU—which led to Cronic’s donation.

“I have always had the greatest respect for those who put themselves on the front line in the war against disease,” Mrs. Howell said when she made the presentation. “They are the true heroes, in every way. It’s with the deepest admiration and respect that we wanted to help the healthcare response during this awful pandemic.”

Wellstar Health System has been deploying these tablets to support hospital teams as they provide care to COVID-19+ patients and others impacted by the virus. These tablets will be used in isolation units and the ICU to connect patients with their families, allow clinicians to converse with family members about the patient’s status and care plans, and to allow for end-of-life conversations and virtual visits. The donation made by Wanda Cronic Howell will go toward a total 55 tablets needed at Spalding Regional.

Tamara Ison, President, Wellstar Spalding Regional Hospital added, “I know these tablets will be greatly appreciated by patients, especially those in our ICU, to connect them with their families, to allow our clinical staff to converse directly with family members about their loved one’s status and, importantly to allow for virtual visits.  This gift brings together family and friends with patients when they are at their most vulnerable and really need the support of loved ones.”

As a family-owned business, the Cronic dealerships see the value in connecting families during tough times. Wanda Cronic Howell said, “We are family-oriented people who love to do things together. It’s devastating to be alone in the hospital without family and friends. And some people have even died without being able to say goodbye. The hospital told us that these tablets were the greatest need, and we are so pleased to provide them. “

Spalding Regional and other Wellstar hospitals continue to seek tablet donations. The initial assessment of need was a minimum of 500 tablets to cover all hospitals. If any organization would be interested in supporting the hospital, contact Kathleen Smith and she can coordinate the donation with the hospital’s IT department (Kathleen.smith2@wellstar.org).

Wanda Cronic Howell through her three Cronic car dealerships donates over $60,000 each year to nonprofits, hospitals, churches and schools to support the community. During the time of COVID-19 Howell has made it easy to shop from home by visiting the website at www.croniccars.com.