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Franciscan Health donates 2,000 thermometers to Michigan City Area Schools
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Franciscan Health donates 2,000 thermometers to Michigan City Area Schools

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Franciscan Health donates 2,000 thermometers to Michigan City Area Schools

Debbie Tatum, director of development for the Franciscan Health Foundation; Kelly Shikany, Foundation board member and project leader; Phillip Shikany, of Sweney Electric Co.; and Dr. Barbara Eason-Watkins, superintendent of Michigan City Area Schools deliver 2,000 digital thermometers to Michigan City Area Schools.

Franciscan Health Foundation, the charitable wing of Franciscan Health, has donated 2,000 digital thermometers to Michigan City Area Schools to monitor students for coronavirus symptoms as a new school year begins during the pandemic.

"We are very grateful to the Franciscan Health Foundation for this donation. Especially during this time, it's important that families begin making temperature checks part of their morning routine,” said Barbara Eason-Watkins, superintendent of Michigan City Area Schools. “By screening for symptoms of (COVID-19), flu, and other health issues at home, families can help us keep all students healthy, safe and ready to learn."

Michigan City schools are slated to open virtually this fall, but with in-person instruction resuming after fall break. Franciscan Health Foundation Board Member Kelly Shikany led the project to buy thermometers for students receiving free and reduced-cost lunch. 

It was the idea of Franciscan Health Michigan City President and CEO Dean Mazzoni.

“This is a great service for families with children trying to eventually get them safely back to school,” he said.

Sweney Electric Co. in Merrillville and other private donors helped fund the initiative. The Duneland Health Council donated a $4,950 grant.

Franciscan Health Foundation’s Preparedness & Response Fund is accepting further donations to assist in the fight against the coronavirus that's killed more than 165,000 Americans thus far. Private donations have helped it supply infrared thermometers, sanitizing stations, and oxygen flow devices to help COVID-positive patients breathe.

For more information, visit FranciscanHealthFoundation.org/COVID-19.

Gallery: Newborns don Baby Yoda caps at Franciscan Health hospitals

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Joseph S. Pete is a Lisagor Award-winning business reporter who covers steel, industry, unions, the ports, retail, banking and more. The Indiana University grad has been with The Times since 2013 and blogs about craft beer, culture and the military.

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