Adam Groshans COVID-19 art project

“Getting to Do Something”: Springfield President Reflects on 2020

Feb 22 2021

Adam Groshans, president and CEO of our Springfield market, recently wrote the following essay about his experience with 2020. It is part of an innovative art project planned for downtown Springfield.

Read his firsthand thoughts here.

“When the pandemic started, there was a Bible verse I shared with my team and my family. It’s from Esther 4:14 and it says, ‘Perhaps you were born for such a time as this.’

Throughout my career, I’ve participated in a variety of disaster drills and simulation planning. Our teams and organization were well positioned but the COVID-19 pandemic was all new in so many ways.  This was the big show and all eyes fell on the hospital. I felt a strong sense of personal responsibility. There’s a level of internal turmoil that you must process as a leader privately yet exude confidence publicly. I had phenomenal support from the organization’s leadership and could go back to my leaders and say with confidence, “These are our next steps.” It gave people optimism. Attitudes are contagious and so is optimism.

I went back to Ester 4:14 many times and thought about the difference between “having to do” something versus “getting to do” something. Considering this difference helped me realize that the pandemic was an opportunity for which God had prepared me and my team. How special is it that the culmination of my experiences and of those around me prepared us for this? It was a reframing that helped me meet the situation, which has been a truly defining chapter in my life.

The pandemic hit at the end of my first career year as a CEO. Nearly half of my executive team was new to the Springfield market. I was blessed by their attitude and experience as well as the wisdom of significant leadership anchors who served on this executive team for years in the market, and who knew the community well.

We were working on finalizing our internal structure and strategy when all our focus turned to the pandemic. Facing a public health crisis so soon into the formation of our team created some challenges, but it also created a bond. The leaders within the organization and the community rose overwhelmingly to meet this crisis.

There came a point where so many things were shut down and all eyes were on the health system. I am incredibly proud and humbled by the way our team members shone so brightly during such a dark time. We were able to care for the community when so many others were not able to.

This meant altering our physical building to adapt and create negative pressure units to care for COVID-related patients. We immediately began training and cross-training a significant number of nurses to provide COVID-19 patient care. 

Additionally, we collaborated on our response with independent physicians and aligned partners on the local, regional and state level, including our local public health departments, the Greater Dayton Area Hospital Association and the Ohio Hospital Association to share what we’d learned from our sister hospitals and other regions. This was a highly beneficial collaboration.

Proud and honored. Those were my first thoughts when Governor DeWine announced Mercy Health – Springfield Regional Medical Center as one of the 10 prepositioned hospitals receiving the vaccine in the state of Ohio. I was proud of our leaders, proud of all of our team members, and proud of our organization. To be trusted with such a responsibility at such a critical time with so much visibility, made me so proud of our teams and all that they have accomplished. I applaud the pharmacy leaders and our chief clinical officers who put in the work that led to us being selected but again, we knew that the pressure was only rising with such a responsibility. We’d be working under intense scrutiny with incomplete information. It was a heavy weight and we had the responsibility to do well because if we didn’t, there was no hiding it.

It’s hard to completely put into words the feelings of gratitude that came from watching teams dedicated to the community rise to meet the challenge of the pandemic and also start the vaccination process. I’m also proud to recognize the amazing talent that lives in a community of our size and scope.

As for the future, I am eternally optimistic and excited about it. COVID-19 is something we are going to deal with for a while, but it is becoming the background. Our COVID-19 response is operating well, and my team is now able to place more emphasis on the other health care services we offer the communities of Clark and Champaign counties.  

I believe it’s easy to take locally accessible care for granted, but COVID-19 has renewed the community’s appreciation for the quality of services provided by the hospital. It’s renewed people’s perspective on what this hospital means to the community and I’m looking forward to building on our good reputation to grow our services and access to care.”

About this art project

This project by Ty Fischer is an exploration of 2020 and how it has impacted Springfield citizens ranging from City and County government officials, local business owners, pastors, front line workers and everyday citizens of Springfield. The artist will take each person’s most impactful words and reshape them into the form of their head shot.

It is expected to be displayed as a walking exhibit in downtown Springfield this summer.

Stay update on what Mercy Health is doing related to COVID-19.

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