Looking Ahead to 2021

This next HCLDR chat on Tuesday December 22nd at 8:30pm EST (for your local time click here) will be the final one for 2020. We will return on Tuesday January 5th. Given the year we have all had, we thought it would be nice to take a 1 week break at the end of this year.

Last week, we reviewed the year together as a community. I especially loved hearing about the things we learned about ourselves: we’re more resilient than we generally thought and more connected. Most learned new skills in 2020 including:

  • How to bake
  • How to cook
  • How to cut your own hair
  • How to deal with long hair
  • How to do a web conference call

And how will we remember 2020 when we look back a few years from now? I thought these tweets summed it up best:

For our final chat of 2020, I thought it would be nice to look ahead to 2021 and beyond. Now that the vaccines have started to arrive, there is reason to be a little optimistic. Not exuberant…we still have some dark months ahead…but at least we know we’re a bit closer to the end of the pandemic.

The vaccines are a ray of hope, not just because they will help us get out of the pandemic. They represent how far we have come technologically. The creation of these vaccines was truly a global effort with scientists sharing their work in a manner and scale that we have never seen. By working together we have produced vaccines of higher effectiveness faster than any time in human history.

Even at 50% effectiveness, the COVID Vaccines would be a triumph of science.

As I look towards 2021 I feel hopeful – hopeful that this pandemic will be in the rear-view mirror by this time next year. What will be the first thing I want to do when things open back up? Seeing friends and loved ones of course and giving them extended hugs. That’s what I’ve been missing the most. I’m sure many of you feel the same.

I’m also looking forward to going out to the movies as a family. In pre-COVID times that was our favorite thing to do together. But we have only been to the cinema twice this entire year…and that was in early January. Watching movies at home is fun in a different way, but nothing compares to the giant screens and hot buttered popcorn.

What will you be doing first? What will be your first indulgence?

From a healthcare perspective, I’m looking forward to the changes in elder care and public health that will be coming in the years ahead. The pandemic exposed the giant gaps in both these areas of healthcare. It has been so bad that I doubt it can be ignored by governments and the public.

Long-term care facilities had a disproportionate number of COVID-related deaths compared to the general population. It’s time to rethink how those facilities are funded, managed, staffed and constructed.

Similarly, it turns out that our public health infrastructure has been on the back burner for too long. Public health authorities had little to no manpower to fight outbreaks or do contact tracing and let’s not even talk about mass testing. I’m looking forward to seeing changes made here.

I hope you can join us on Tuesday December 22nd at 8:30pm EST (for your local time click here) as we wrap up 2020 with a look ahead:

  • T1 What will be the first things you do when COVID is officially over and it is safe to gather again? What will be your 1st indulgence?
  • T2 From a healthcare perspective, what changes or improvements do you believe will happen in 2021 based on our experience in 2020?
  • T3 Other than the vaccines, what else is giving you hope that 2021 will be better than 2020?
  • T4 Let’s have some fun. Share cartoons, memes or photos from 2020 that made you smile or laugh.

Image Credit

Photo by Ian Taylor on Unsplash

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