Barrow Neuro-Telemetry Unit Provides Essential Items to Patients in Need

The neuro-telemetry unit at Barrow Neurological Institute is leading an effort to provide essential items to patients in need upon their discharge from the hospital.

Nurses, case managers, medical students, and other team members have assembled 120 backpacks with essential items and distributed them to several units at St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center. The backpacks contain personal hygiene items, clothing, footwear, water bottles, and snacks.

Wendy Lopez, a charge nurse on the neuro-telemetry unit, proposed and sought funding for the idea after recognizing a rise in homelessness among patients throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to the Maricopa County Association of Governments, the county’s homeless population has climbed by as much as 34 percent since 2020—reflecting a nationwide trend.

“I felt inspired to ask for assistance from the hospital and Barrow board to help ameliorate some of the many problems these individuals face on a day-to-day basis,” Wendy said. “This project highlights how we are committed to our communities by improving the health of the people we serve, especially those who are vulnerable.”

St. Joseph’s Mission Services has assisted with identifying and ordering appropriate supplies. Another 160 backpacks will soon be filled, and the project will continue for as long as funding allows.