Doctors and nurses aren't the only ones on the front line. Here's to the unsung hospital heroes.

By now, we've all seen videos and posts from exhausted nurses and doctors who are working like mad under less-than-ideal circumstances to treat patients during this pandemic. We've also seen the well-deserved recognition and praise they've received for putting their own lives at risk to save others. They are heroes, and should absolutely receive a hero's acknowledgment.


But there are others working on those front lines as well—folks that medical facilities rely on as much as our critical care workers, but who are rarely ever seen, much less acknowledged. They don't receive anywhere near the pay or the respect that care providers do, but as a viral Facebook post points out, our medical facilities would come to a grinding halt without them.

Here's to the hospital janitors, housekeepers, custodians, and other support workers who keep our medical facilities clean and safe. They literally clean up human waste, bodily fluids, and other contaminants that give us all the willies, day in and day out. They wipe, sweep, mop, sanitize, change sheets, dispose of trash, and make the environment as sterile as it needs to be. We often forget that none of the good work that doctors and nurses do would be possible without these workers.

The cleaning crews deserve our thanks, but they also aren't the only ones. There are other support staff in hospitals who also play a vital role in keeping our healthcare system running smoothly. The secretaries, receptionists, maintenance workers, technicians, and other behind-the-scenes workers who manage the running of the facilities and systems that enable medical caregivers to do their job of treating people and saving lives deserve our thanks as well.

Along with our front line doctors and nurses, these people are also putting their own health on the line. They are going toward the fire. They are making sacrifices that most of us aren't being asked to make.

And they are doing all of that without an impressive paycheck or high societal status.

So thank you, medical support staff. You are heroes in your own right, and we are grateful for what you do.

Courtesy of Verizon
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If someone were to say "video games" to you, what are the first words that come to mind? Whatever words you thought of (fun, exciting, etc.), we're willing to guess "healthy" or "mental health tool" didn't pop into your mind.

And yet… it turns out they are. Especially for Veterans.

How? Well, for one thing, video games — and virtual reality more generally — are also more accessible and less stigmatized to veterans than mental health treatment. In fact, some psychiatrists are using virtual reality systems for this reason to treat PTSD.

Secondly, video games allow people to socialize in new ways with people who share common interests and goals. And for Veterans, many of whom leave the military feeling isolated or lonely after they lose the daily camaraderie of their regiment, that socialization is critical to their mental health. It gives them a virtual group of friends to talk with, connect to, and relate to through shared goals and interests.

In addition, according to a 2018 study, since many video games simulate real-life situations they encountered during their service, it makes socialization easier since they can relate to and find common ground with other gamers while playing.

This can help ease symptoms of depression, anxiety, and even PTSD in Veterans, which affects 20% of the Veterans who have served since 9/11.

Watch here as Verizon dives into the stories of three Veteran gamers to learn how video games helped them build community, deal with trauma and have some fun.

Band of Gamers www.youtube.com

Video games have been especially beneficial to Veterans since the beginning of the pandemic when all of us — Veterans included — have been even more isolated than ever before.

And that's why Verizon launched a challenge last year, which saw $30,000 donated to four military charities.

And this year, they're going even bigger by launching a new World of Warships charity tournament in partnership with Wargaming and Wounded Warrior Project called "Verizon Warrior Series." During the tournament, gamers will be able to interact with the game's iconic ships in new and exciting ways, all while giving back.

Together with these nonprofits, the tournament will welcome teams all across the nation in order to raise money for military charities helping Veterans in need. There will be a $100,000 prize pool donated to these charities, as well as donation drives for injured Veterans at every match during the tournament to raise extra funds.

Verizon is also providing special discounts to Those Who Serve communities, including military and first responders, and they're offering a $75 in-game content military promo for World of Warships.

Tournament finals are scheduled for August 8, so be sure to tune in to the tournament and donate if you can in order to give back to Veterans in need.

Courtesy of Verizon