Hospital offers online greeting cards

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By Lisa King

Holly Husband looked up from making an online greeting card and smiled.

"If a picture is worth a thousand words, then a greeting card means even more, especially to someone in the hospital," she said.

Husband, public relations director at Jewish Hospital Shelbyville, said the hospital's new online service to provide greeting cards has been very well received by patients and the public alike.

The free service has been available since Sept. 1 and is accessible to everyone, Husband said.

"It couldn't be easier," she said. "All you have to do is go online on our Web site [www.jhsmh.org] and click on patient greeting card."

Husband said the sender just has to choose a card design and message, and may even include a personal message if he/she wants. The best thing, she added, is that the patient will get it right away.

"Sometimes if someone is only in the hospital for a short time, by the time you buy a card and get it in the mail, the patient has already been discharged," she said. "But with this service, as soon as you send it, we will print it out, and one of our volunteers will deliver it to the patient immediately."

Husband said patients have really enjoyed receiving greeting cards this way.

"Sometimes the patient may not be feeling up to having visitors or they may just enjoy hearing from someone with well wishes. It really cheers them up," she said.

Dr. Jerry Seligman and his wife, Lillian, funded the program. Husband said the couple had known of this service at other hospitals and thought it should be available at Jewish, too. Online cards also are available at Jewish Hospital's sister institutions, such as Frazier Rehab and Jewish Hospital in Louisville.

Husband said that so far, people have found the cards by chance or by hearsay, but she's hoping more people will discover them.

"We just wanted to put this out there so everyone will know that now there is a quick, easy and free way to cheer up somebody in the hospital," she said. "With just the click of a button, you can send any patient a really attractive greeting card that they will get immediately."

After a visitor to the Web site completes the card and sends it, it will be received immediately by Janet Harrell, the switchboard operator at Jewish Hospital Shelbyville, who handles printing and distributing the cards.

"It's easy," she said. "From the time I opened the e-mail to the time I got the printout was hardly more than a minute."

Husband said the cards can be sent by anyone, regardless of what type of operating system or software they have on their computers.

For more information, contact Husband at 647-4307.