Baptist Health Hardin creating 'recharge rooms' for staff

December 18, 2020

HMH Foundation seeking support from the community and businesses for project

ELIZABETHTOWN, Ky., Dec. 17, 2020 – Baptist Health Hardin is creating a series of “recharge rooms” around the hospital to provide a calm place for staff to regenerate from the pace and rigor of their shifts, which have intensified due to pandemic response.

The idea to create these unique rooms was the brainchild of Director of Respiratory Care Melanie Whitlock, Director of Critical Care Jamie Wilkerson, and Intensive Care Unit Manager Nathan Ernst and was unanimously approved by the Baptist Health Hardin senior team.

Tom Carrico, Baptist Health Hardin Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, said it is imperative for the staff, especially those caring for COVID positive patients directly, to take a few minutes from time to time to relax.

“Our team works around the clock to provide for patients physical, emotional and spiritual needs. These new rooms provide a temporary respite where they can take a moment to recharge,” Carrico said. “Today, staff double as family and provide not only medical care, but also warmth and reassurance.”

“I see firsthand the toll the months of pandemic have taken on each and every one of my team,” Ernst said. “These recharge rooms will provide them with a close place to take some time for themselves to regroup, refocus, and recharge.”

The HMH Foundation committed last spring to help Baptist Health Hardin by creating the COVID-19 Emergency Fund. To date, in-kind and monetary donors helped provide countless meals, treats, small gifts and most importantly, financial support when employees find themselves unable to pay a utility bill, rent or make a car payment due to pandemic challenges. 

Baptist Health Hardin Vice President and Chief Development Officer Tracee Troutt said the pandemic’s duration and the present high patient volumes means Baptist Health Hardin needs the community’s support now more than ever.

“This team, who makes it their mission to do whatever it takes to heal patients, gives so much of themselves while also teaching children at home, supporting their families financially, and trying to take care of themselves and stay balanced and healthy,” Troutt said.

The four recharge rooms will be stationed around the hospital and will cost an estimated $30,000 and Hardin Memorial Health Foundation is collecting donations to develop the rooms. To thank the staff for all they do and support them, people can learn more or make a donation at

For additional audio from Tom Carrico, please visit: