It can be tough working winter holidays or missing Christmas morning at home, as patient care increases and hospital resources are limited. We know that you’d rather be with your family and friends, but you can still get into the holiday spirit at the hospital!
Check out these eight COVID-friendly ways to celebrate the holidays this season at the hospital, that will be sure to boost staff spirit and cheer up your patients.
1. COVID-Safe Dessert Exchange
A cookie or dessert exchange can still work during COVID-19 times. Each participant brings a few dozen desserts (separated into bags) and then leaves with a few dozen different items – such as slices of Thanksgiving pumpkin pie, sugar cookies, brownies, and more.
2. Decorate Your Workspace
Ask if you can decorate your workspace for Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hannukah, New Year’s, or whatever winter holidays you celebrate. Maybe it’s garland in the hallway, fun wreaths on hospital room doors, lights wrapped around IV poles, or a small tree on the nurse’s station.
3. Play Classic Holiday Music
Holiday music boosts moods. It’s also the best way to create a holiday atmosphere if decorations—due to COVID-19 or other hospital policies—aren’t allowed. Of course, you should check with your supervisor if playing music is permitted.
4. COVID-Safe Holiday Celebration Potluck
The CDC discourages potluck gatherings, but grab-and-go meals are okay. Do a grab-and-go style potluck where everyone brings their favorite holiday dishes to share in individually wrapped packages.
5. Play Holiday Movies
If the break room has a television, leave it on a holiday movie channel. Catching glimpses of treasured holiday classics is sure to boost spirits between patient care.
6. Do a Gift Exchange
Do a White Elephant gift exchange with wacky gifts or a Secret Santa gift exchange with your fellow nurses working holidays.
A nurse at John’s Hopkin’s did a $25 Secret Santa where each participant bought three gifts and anonymously delivered one each week. On Christmas day, participants gave out their final presents and revealed their identities.
7. Wear Festive Attire
Your hospital might not permit holiday-themed scrubs, but what about a fun Thanksgiving headband, Christmas socks, or a festive long-sleeve under your scrubs?
8. Collect Donations for a Local Food Pantry
Help others celebrate the holidays by running a non-perishable food drive for a local charity. Decorate collection boxes with holiday themes. If your team is competitive, turn it into a contest.
Above All, Follow Hospital Protocol
By now, you and your hospital staff are intimately familiar with all the hospital protocols surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic. As you plan for new holiday traditions at the hospital, ensure you’re following that protocol.