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CONGRATULATIONS: DR. JESSICA LEWIS AND DR. MEGAN SCHOMMER

MS and JJL Intro Collage

Please join us in congratulating Dr. Jessica Lewis, our new Medical Director, and Dr. Megan Schommer, our new Communications Director. These two individuals are not only knowledgeable and skilled veterinarians, but they are also exceptional leaders who will use their talents to build upon the tradition of excellence that St. Francis has known for so many years.

Medical Director: Dr. Jessica Lewis

As the Medical Director, Dr. Lewis will review and revise medical protocols; lead patient care rounds, doctor’s meetings, and staff meetings; evaluate new medications and products; develop new patient care programs; and assist in creating client education handouts, videos, and articles. In addition, she will serve as our Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Safety Officer. As one of Jessica’s first projects, she created a video to share with you about what to expect for your curbside appointment at St Francis. To watch our video, St Francis: What To Expect With Curbside Care, please visit our new YouTube channel at:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC1sZEtXALYTYCrZg0wUG2qA/featured . We welcome your ideas for future videos!

Communications Director: Dr. Megan Schommer

As the Communications Director, Dr. Schommer will revise and maintain our website; assist in the management of our social media channels; create and send our monthly newsletters; assist in the management of our communications platforms; revise and create client education handouts and articles; assist in marketing and public relations; and plan client education events, charitable events, and community outreach activities. As one of Megan’s first projects, she brings to St Francis the Winter Solstice Pet Memorial Event. Please see below for additional information about this event.

WINTER SOLSTICE PET MEMORIAL EVENT: DECEMBER 21ST, 7:30 PM

Holidays can be challenging when we are grieving the loss of a beloved pet. We understand how important it is to hold space for memories of pets who are no longer with us, and as part of the community that cared for your pet, we would like to help honor them. On the evening of the Winter Solstice, December 21st, we will be holding a short virtual ceremony via Zoom where we will share some thoughts, readings, and reflections on pet loss and grief. Grieving the loss of a pet can be extremely isolating, and we hope that gathering together, even virtually, will create a sense of community and belonging alongside people who understand the gravity of your loss.

Please join us for our Winter Solstice Pet Memorial Event on December 21 st at 7:30 pm via Zoom. If you would like to attend, please email us at group@stfrancisabh.com and we will respond with an invitation to the Zoom event.

CAUSE FOR PAWS HOLIDAY FUNDRAISER

Our holiday fundraiser to benefit Cause for Paws has begun and will continue through the end of the year.

The donations made will go directly to help provide preventative and medical care to the cats and kittens of Cause for Paws.

Due to COVID-19, we are currently operating curbside and won't be able to have you stop in to make a donation. Donations can be made when you are here for a curbside care appointment or medication pick up or you may call us at 651-645-2808. For your donation of any amount, we will place an ornament on our lobby tree. If you'd like a note or a memorial written on the ornament, we can do so for you.

Cause For Paws is a small, all-volunteer Minnesota nonprofit 501(c)(3) group founded in 1998. Their main focus is to find loving permanent homes for stray and abandoned cats and kittens. All cats in their care are fostered in volunteers’ homes. Their work is funded entirely by donations. To learn more, please visit: https://www.causeforpawsmn.org/ .

Please help us fill our tree with ornaments and provide care for the cats of Cause for Paws!

COVID-19 UPDATE

With the extraordinary number of positive COVID-19 cases, we are working even more diligently to keep our clients and our team as safe and healthy as possible. If you have an appointment at St Francis, please help us by following these guidelines.

  • If you or anyone in your family is ill, has been ill, or has been around anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19 within the past 14 days, please alert us. We will ask that you reschedule any routine non-critical visits. If your pet is sick, we would prefer for you to ask someone else to bring your pet for the visit. Regardless, we need to know the status of your household so that we can use additional personal protective equipment (PPE) when handling pets from COVID-19 positive homes.
  • We ask that everyone wear a mask when interacting with our team members, even if you are in your car or standing outside. We will commit to wearing a mask and a shield at all times.
  • We have an ongoing struggle with the volume of phone calls. For non-urgent updates, questions, appointment requests, or refill requests, please reach out to us via email at group@stfrancisabh.com or PetDesk or consider leaving a voicemail at (651) 645-2808. Team members working offsite are able to manage these modes of correspondence, leaving the phone call queue available for those who have urgent or immediate needs.

Under the guidance of the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), we are being very careful to keep COVID-19 out of the workplace so that we can continue to be here to care for your pets. Any team member showing any signs of illness is asked to stay home and obtain a negative COVID test before returning to St Francis. This can lead to unexpected staffing issues. In the unlikely event that we need to reschedule appointments, we ask for your kindness, understanding, and patience as we work with you to find alternative appointment times.

As always, thank you for all of your understanding, your kind words, and your generosity throughout this year. We are so grateful for you and so honored to have worked side by side with you throughout the ups and downs of this pandemic.

NEWS BRIEFS

Women’s Press: Reader’s Recommend Survey

Please take a moment to vote for us for Favorite Animal Hospital in the Minnesota Women’s Press 2021 Readers Recommend Survey: http://tinyurl.com/MWP2021ReadersRecommend . Voting ends on January 31st .

Holiday Hours

We have provided our team with important time off with their families for the holidays. If your pet has an emergency during this time, please contact the Animal Emergency & Referral Center (651-501-3766), University of Minnesota Small Animal Hospital (612-626-8387), Blue Pearl Arden Hills (763-754-5000), or Como Park After Hours (651-487-3255)

December 24th: Open: 8-12:30 pm

December 25th - 27th: Closed

December 31st: Open 8-3:00 pm

January 1st - 3rd: Closed

Stay Tuned: Dr. Kate French and Dr. Mike Petersen

Stay tuned for introductions of our new veterinarians! Dr. Kate French will provide temporary coverage on Mondays and Tuesdays in January and February. Dr. Mike Petersen will start full-time on February 22nd . As always, St Francis has added exceptional talent to our team to provide you with the very best care for your loved ones. We are excited for you to meet them!