BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — National Doctor’s Day celebrates the contributions physicians make to our communities nationwide.
“As has become evident during this pandemic, the gift of our medical community, it has never been more important," said Kern County Adventist Health president Daniel Wilcott.
But this year, instead of gifts or a banquet for themselves, Adventist Health used the day to help Kern County families.
“We are making a donation of $50,000 to the Kern County Literacy Council," said Kern County Adventist Health Chief Medical Officer Dr. Ronald Reynoso.
They also revealed a new program “Stories and Stethoscopes.”
“Who knows, maybe that way we’ll be inspiring future doctors from our community right here," Kern County Adventist Health Vice Chief of Staff Dr. Ololade Oladimeji.
When COVID-19 restrictions allow it, they’ll have story time for families at the hospitals in Bakersfield, Delano and Tehachapi.
The goal is to encourage reading at a young age.
“If we can get the young people of our community to increase their reading levels early, it increases the probability they’ll graduate from high school, increases the probability that they’ll be able to have a living wage job and that in turn increases the probability that they'll have disease free lifetimes," said Wilcott.
Executive Director Laura Lollar Wolfe said this donation will also help the Kern Literacy Council support families that don’t have books.
"During this pandemic times, and especially with kids being out of school, having books in the home is just extra important," said Wolfe. "In our book, reading is the best medicine.”
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