LAYTON -- How may I help you today?
That's a question patients at Davis Hospital and Medical Center are now getting used to hearing, thanks to a new concierge position created last March.
Jessica Woodward, who was named as the hospital's concierge, said she is helping patients take some of the worry out of their hospital stay by assisting them in ways that fall outside traditional health care.
Since she began working as concierge, Woodward has done everything from picking up a burger at Five Guys, to delivering favorite books, magazines, sodas and body lotion to patients' bedsides. Woodward said helping to take the load off helps patients heal faster and go home sooner.
"This position benefits the patients and relieves them of the stress of having to worry about things while they are in the hospital," said Woodward, who was previously a receptionist. "When patients and families are worried and stressed, the healing process can take longer."
In the past several years, a growing number of hospitals have hired a concierge to help take some of the worry out of the hospital stay. According to the Center for American Nurses, the growing trend of having a hospital concierge assist patients with certain needs has been shown to save a nurse as many as five hours per month.
Not only can Woodward bring in food and drinks, she can do other extras, such as help a patient apply makeup and coordinate after-school rides for their kids.
Woodward not only helps the patient, she assists their family members as well.
"I'm not only here for the patients, I'm here for their families, too," she said. "Helping with special requests and last-minute worries, and exceeding patient expectations. That's what I strive to do every day."
To help prepare for the new position, Woodward trained with Michael Hess, a Hotel Park City concierge. She said Hess taught her what to say, how to say it, how to maintain eye contact and how to be a better listener.
"He helped me learn how to address different needs and anticipate requests," she said. "The most challenging thing about my job is building a relationship with patients and their families and eventually having to say goodbye."
Woodward said so far, she's received nothing but positive feedback from patients.
One patient told her in a letter that every time she smells her Bath & Body Works lotion, it reminds her of Woodward and how well she was treated.
"It's the best job in the world," Woodward said. "I want patients to feel important and to know that we care."