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‘Victory boards’ highlight COVID-19 recoveries

Metro Detroit healthcare workers find ways to celebrate victories to raise morale

GROSSE POINTE, Mich. – They're called "victory boards" -- an idea that has caught on at hospitals all across Metro Detroit.

The prominently displayed wipe boards list the number of COVID-19 patients successfully coming off a ventilator and breathing on their own, as well as the number of patients discharged to go home.

"As a hospital worker, it's so good to be able to see some of that success and that we're making a difference taking care of these patients," said Nicole Ahlgrim, the director of surgical services at Beaumont, Grosse Pointe.

Ahlgrim had the idea for their victory board after seeing a board on social media. She hopes their board will be a source of strength and inspiration for the staff.

“Seeing the number of patients that are dying in the hospitals is not something that we’re used to. The numbers are so much higher than we would have before COVID. And it’s really hard, I’m not going to lie, it’s definitely hard,” said Ahlgrim.

UPDATE April 9, 3 p.m. -- Michigan coronavirus (COVID-19) cases up to 21,504; Death toll now at 1,076

But they are determined to make a difference -- one patient at a time.

"There was a story that we shared this morning," said Ahlgrim. "Of an employee that works in the hospital that picked up this frail woman who was so scared that she was going to die. And he held her in his arms and he danced with her, and he's like, 'You're not dying on my watch,' and just, I mean, that level of commitment is what we have here, and I could not be more proud of this team."

When a baby is born at the Beaumont Hospitals, a special lullaby is played. The hospitals are now planning to play a special song whenever a COVID-19 patient is discharged or successfully comes off the ventilator.

And when those victories happen --

“That word spreads through our entire hospital,” said Ahlgrim. “You hear all the clapping and the celebration, and the hope, I think is what it’s really giving all of our staff, that there is hope.”

Victory Board for Beaumont Troy
Victory Board for Beaumont Troy (WDIV)
Victory Board for Beaumont Royal Oak
Victory Board for Beaumont Royal Oak (WDIV)
Victory Board for Beaumont Wayne
Victory Board for Beaumont Wayne (WDIV)
Victory Board for Beaumont Dearborn
Victory Board for Beaumont Dearborn (WDIV)
Victory Board for Beaumont Farmington Hills
Victory Board for Beaumont Farmington Hills (WDIV)
Victory Board for Beaumont Grosse Pointe
Victory Board for Beaumont Grosse Pointe (WDIV)
Victory Board for Beaumont Taylor
Victory Board for Beaumont Taylor (WDIV)
Victory Boards for Beaumont Trenton
Victory Boards for Beaumont Trenton (WDIV)
Victory Boards for Beaumont Trenton
Victory Boards for Beaumont Trenton (WDIV)