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Here's how to donate food to health care workers

Thousands of meals are donated to doctors, nurses and caregivers working grueling hours fighting the pandemic.

CENTENNIAL, Colo. — People and businesses are donating thousands of meals to hospitals, as doctors, nurses and caregivers work grueling hours during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Representatives for three of the metro area’s major health systems say people’s charity has been awe inspiring.

Centura Health, which operates Littleton Adventist Hospital and Porter Adventist Hospital, said people have not only supplied hot meals for shift workers, they’ve also provided shelf-stable food for an employee food bank for use after long shifts.

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“For many of those people getting to the grocery store is difficult,” said Dr. Shauna Gulley, Chief Clinical Officer at Centura Health. “You're probably aware that our grocery stores have limited hours and limited availability of food. So, those simple donations can make the world of difference to people."

UCHealth, which operates the University of Colorado Hospital in Aurora, also has a food bank established for employees. Spokeswoman Jessica Berry said thousands of boxes of Girl Scout cookies have made their way to hospital floors as a treat for front-line caregivers. Neighbors have also pitched in to buy meals from local restaurants to be delivered to the hospital.

“ICU and emergency room teams are often the focus, but some donors appreciate the chance to give to other unsung heroes; respiratory therapists, sterile processing team, pharmacy, labs, environmental services team mates who keep our hospitals clean and security team,” said Stephanie Sullivan, spokeswoman for HealthOne, which manages Swedish Medical Center and Rose Medical Center.

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But it’s not as easy to donate to a hospital as it is to call up your local pizza place and order for a hospital wing or swinging by to drop off a box of pasta for a food bank. All three systems, as with all hospitals in the metro area, ask you contact them first to have a donation approved.

In all cases, hospital systems are asking for wrapped food or meals.

To donate, click on the links below to contact the hospital systems: