Memphis Medical Society launches campaign to support the restaurant industry alongside healthcare workers, both heavily affected by COVID-19
At the outbreak of the pandemic, Memphis Medical Society immediately responded to its members calls about the lack of PPE, and MMS began sourcing and distributing PPE to frontline workers. As the pandemic waned on, MMS continued to pivot its mission to support physicians and their teams as needs changed from up-to-the-minute education to vaccine access, understanding the healthcare system was being stretched in new and incredibly challenging ways.
MMS recognized that the restaurant industry in Memphis was also affected by COVID-19 in similar and devastating ways, many having to close their doors and furlough employees. The Board of Directors agreed to start a campaign that would thank healthcare workers, while also benefiting the restaurant industry.
MMS teamed up with chef Kelly English, of Restaurant Iris, Second Line and Fino’s among others, to prepare food deliveries to area hospitals. “We wanted to show our support and gratitude to our healthcare teams, and we realized we could also provide support for the restaurant industry by ordering food with them,” says Clint Cummins, CEO of Memphis Medical Society. “We felt it was a win-win for all parties involved.”
Over the next three weeks, this partnership will provide meals for the emergency departments and intensive care units at St. Francis-Bartlett, Regional One Hospital and Methodist University Hospital. “It was important to us to include all staff in these areas,” Cummins says. “Nurses, environmental services, physicians and administration will all be included in these food deliveries. There’s no job in these departments that COVID-19 hasn’t stressed.”
“My team is very excited about this partnership,” says chef Kelly English. “It’s a perfect opportunity to give hours to my staff while regular services are so limited, and we are proud to be a part of thanking these healthcare workers on the frontlines of COVID-19 care.”
In addition to this campaign, Memphis Medical Society made a donation to Welcome to Memphis’s COVID-19 Fund, which is providing relief grants to restaurant workers who have been furloughed, laid off, or have had their hours reduced.
The Memphis Medical Society is a non-profit, physician professional organization, dedicated to uniting and advocating for the physicians of Shelby County and their patients. The Society is a trusted source of up-to-date healthcare industry news and resources to make physicians’ lives better at home and at practice. For more information, visit www.mdmemphis.org.
Chef Kelly English is Executive Chef/Owner of acclaimed Restaurant Iris, The Second Line, and Fino’s Italian Delicatessen & Grocery in Memphis; Executive Chef, Magnolia House, Biloxi, MS; and 2009 Food & Wine magazine “Best New Chef.” Visit, irisetc.com for catering, hot food pickup, virtual cooking classes and nationwide shipping.