The gifts we give

Parades. Lights. Jolly music. More holiday events than you could count on both hands. We are smack dab in the middle of the most magical time of the year, and I am loving it.

I’m not alone in that. So many of us at Eureka Springs Hospital love the Christmas season — a few of us beautifully decorated the nurses’ station, and we had an absolute blast at the Eureka Springs Christmas Parade of Lights. We invited our staff and their kiddos to join us on our float. It’s impossible to describe how wonderful it felt to see all those smiling faces, both on our float and on the sidewalk surrounding us.

Radiology tech Cassie, Nurse Meghan and CEO Angie helped make it a family affair by letting their kids be part of our float. I talked with Meghan a few days after the parade and she said her kids were talking about it all weekend.

“We were playing charades on Saturday,” Meghan said, “and they were something in the parade. A horse in the parade. A float in the parade. That kind of thing.”

Being in the parade felt like receiving an early Christmas gift. I have to shout out the Eureka Springs Chamber of Commerce for doing an incredible job putting it on. They know everyone looks forward to this parade every year, and they never disappoint. Thank you to Devin and his team!

As the Christmas season continues, I find myself thinking about gifts: the gifts we give, and the gifts we receive. I felt like I was given a gift when I started my job at the hospital nearly two years ago. It was an opportunity to use my communications skills to help the community I love. It still feels that way today, and I am sure it will feel that way 20 years from now.

Our hospital gives the community the gift of 24/7/365 emergency services, with first-class stroke and trauma programs. We recently received the Bronze Achievement Award from the American Heart Association for our rural stroke program. The award recognizes our stroke program for improved patient outcomes and fewer recurring events. So if you recognize the signs of a stroke in yourself or a loved one, you can trust us to take care of you quickly and efficiently.

Another gift we love to give is our outpatient services. Those outpatient services include laboratory services, radiology services, speech therapy, endoscopy procedures and physical therapy. Did you know we have an 80-slice CT scan? That’s the best CT scan in the region, and you can get those scans done right here in Eureka Springs.

We do everything we can to take care of our community, but I have to admit that we get more than we give. I have loved living in Carroll County since the moment my husband and I moved here nearly 10 years ago. Everyone in our county is so giving, so kind, so thoughtful. Every day when I come to work, I remind myself that our hospital is only here because of the amazing community we serve.

To everyone in Eureka Springs, Holiday Island, Berryville, Green Forest and all those other communities on the edges of our county — thank you for being part of our community. We see patients from all these cities use our emergency and outpatient services.

I call our patients a few days after they leave our emergency room to check in on them and ensure they received top-notch care when they were here. I spoke with someone recently who profusely thanked our doctors and nurses for giving such good care. They said our hospital is a gift to the community.

I loved hearing that, and I have to agree. But the greatest gift we have in Carroll County is one another. We work together. We stick up for one other. We see the beauty and value in our neighbors. Being part of this community is the best gift I ever got, and I know everyone else at Eureka Springs Hospital feels that way.

••• Samantha Jones is marketing director for Eureka Springs Hospital. You can reach her by calling 479-253-7400 ext. 4802 or emailing Samantha.Jones@EurekaSpringsHospital. com.