National Center for Healthcare Advancement and Partnerships
OCE Partnerships and COVID-19
OCE staff member Georgi Bady is making connections on behalf of front-line workers during COVID-19
As the coronavirus pandemic has changed the way many Veterans receive health care and many Veterans Health Administration (VHA) employees conduct their work, some VHA staff members have been devoting their time, energy, and skills to efforts that ease the effects of COVID-19. Team members from VHA’s Office of Community Engagement (OCE) have stepped up to help during this challenging time in several ways. Here are their stories.
Ms. Georgi Bady, health systems specialist at OCE, said she has been able to use her skills in making connections, conducting due diligence, and consulting on partnerships during the coronavirus pandemic.
“I just connect people,” Ms. Bady said, “And then they do these wonderful things.” .
One such connection Ms. Bady assisted with during COVID-19 was helping VHA’s Workforce Management and Consulting (WMC) office bring health care resources to front-line employees working during COVID-19—Ms. Bady consulted with WMC about two organizations: Child Care Aware of America and Bright Horizons. The goal of this collaboration was to bring child care services to front-line employees during the pandemic.
Child Care Aware of America works with more than 400 state and local child care resource and referral agencies to help people find child care. Bright Horizons is a child care providing agency and the largest provider in the nation of employer-sponsored child care. These organizations have been able to coordinate free child care for front-line employees on-site at VHA facilities and in other facilities throughout the country.
As the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) executes its “Fourth Mission”—providing services to the nation during COVID-19 based on requests from states, while being clear that Veterans are first—many VA and VHA staff members have been called up to increase the amount of time they spend at work, so they might need child care services beyond what they usually require.
Ms. Bady facilitated discussions with WMC and Child Care Aware of America and Bright Horizons, and conducted due diligence review to ensure these organizations served Veterans’ and employees’ best interests.
She also worked with VA partner Code of Support Foundation to spread the word about these child care services on Code of Support Foundation’s PATRIOTlink platform. PATRIOTlink’s services are available to Veterans and employees who can search on the platform for vetted, direct, cost-free services specific to their needs. Now, child care services for VHA employees are listed on PATRIOTlink.
“As our front-line employees battle to take care of Veterans, they should not have to worry about their children. That is why I thought this would be an important initiative—to take care of those who take care of Veterans,” said Ms. Bady.
“For more information on OCE’s work on partnerships throughout VHA, please visit va.gov/healthpartnerships.
Posted September 1, 2020