Senior dining and healthcare were on the front lines of food service during the coronavirus pandemic. But that hasn’t stopped Cura Hospitality, a member of the Elior North America family of companies that manages both hospitals and senior dining facilities, from being a hub of innovation.
Lisa Schairer, MBA, RDN, managing director of Cura, spoke about how the company has managed to create a community for all of the smaller operations it serves by sharing everyone’s stories and innovations during the pandemic in a large, virtual forum. Through an enewsletter and weekly Zoom calls, the operators had a chance to share these ideas and educate others from what they learned during this time of mass innovation.
One of these ideas was mini grocery stores, which Cura introduced to many of its units as a way of providing the frontline workers in hospitals with basic needs (like items that were sold out other places like toilet paper and hand sanitizer) and it was wildly popular.
Schairer explained that the company, in a time when profits were harder to come by, focused on serving people’s needs and providing comfort during trying times. From tending to patients who couldn’t leave rooms with margarita carts or ice cream socials to grab-and-go hot meals for staff as they leave their shifts, Schairer explains the programs Cura locations have rolled out during the pandemic and the future of these initiatives post-COVID in this week’s episode of One On One.