By Dr. Sarah Schatz, physican chair, and Jon Lillejord, clinic director, both Sanford Health Jamestown;

Mike Delfs, president and CEO, Jamestown Regional Medical Center; and

Laura Hovland, operations director, Essentia Health Jamestown, Valley City and Lisbon

On behalf of our patients, employees and providers we want to thank all of you for your efforts in keeping our community safe. Your use of science-based methods, including wearing face masks, social distancing, practicing good hand hygiene and quarantining when necessary make an absolute difference in reducing the spread of COVID-19.

We also thank our employees and providers for their innovation and flexibility. Their dedication in going beyond their traditional roles to cover needs throughout health care as we see record demand for health care services has been extraordinary. From working long shifts with incredibly complex patients to diligently trying to meet the record demand in clinical services, our team continues to rise to the occasion.

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Despite all that we are doing, we anticipate that our pandemic cases will continue to increase as cold weather, more indoor activities and holiday gatherings happen. We ask that you be even more diligent with social distancing, wearing face masks, and practicing good hand hygiene during this most critical time. We know everyone misses family and friends, are experiencing fatigue and long for a return to normal; our hearts ache for the patients struggling, distressed families, and health care staff working around the clock. Please, do not let your guard down. We are making headway. We and the community need your help now, more than ever.

We are all in this together. Please continue to take care of yourselves, support one another, and mask up to safeguard our family, friends and community.

Schatz, Lillejord and Delfs live in Jamestown; Hovland lives in Wimbledon.