Tygerberg Hospital Hero Amongst us: September La Meyer
This week’s nominated Coronavirus Hero Amongst Us at Tygerberg Hospital, September La Meyer, provides an essential service to his colleagues during challenging times. The Hero Amongst Us campaign seeks to highlight an official’s achievements, abilities or personal qualities during the COVID-19 pandemic. In the eyes of hospital staff, he or she can also be regarded as a role model or ideal.
As a driver in the Support Services, September has been employed at Tygerberg Hospital for a period of 41 years. Currently, he also extends a helping hand to the Grounds and Gardening services, and the Western Cape Laundry by transporting linen from the hospital to the laundry. “Learning to wear a mask and visor and practice social distancing as part of my work is a new experience. My work is concentrated more on the grounds than within buildings. I have adapted quite well to change as I did not see it as foreign,” says September, who lives in Kraaifontein.
What motivates him to come to work every day is, “knowing that with my duties I am the support to other staff to ensure that patients are ultimately cared for as we are all connected in a chain. Any of my family could become a patient and I will therefore be assisting them in the work environment as well.”
He is also appreciative of the support of hospital management during this time. “They have provided myself and staff with the necessary PPE [personal protective equipment], hand sanitisers, training, information leaflets, emails. We have created a WhatsApp group where information is relayed so that there are no delays and it minimises the use of paper and contact. My supervisor and further reporting supervisor have provided vital emotional support when I did not understand the “new normal” and became anxious,” adds September.
As it is an anxious time for everyone, he encourages people to listen to what we are supposed to do by following procedures. “I know that the patients are scared, so are we but we as the staff are here to help in any way we can. We need to remain positive as anxiety can cripple us emotionally. History shows that human beings can overcome, and we shall.”
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