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One year later: UHP employees reflect on life affected by the pandemic

An audio clip for those who preferred to do an audio interview instead.

By Vina Cristobal and Marybeth Kotrodimos
Featured photos by Vina Cristobal

It’s been more than a year since COVID-19 left people shuttered in their homes. We asked some of our UHP ‘ohana to share their thoughts on how the pandemic has affected their work and personal lives. 

Romel D., who works in Finance, was relieved to be home. He was visiting relatives in the Philippines at the beginning of March 2020, right before the pandemic made its global peak. Due to the restrictions, Romel had to extend his stay.

“I’m glad that I’m back, because actually I was locked down in the Philippines for six months before March to September, and I’m back here in September,” he said. 

Many of those in the UHP Central office have opted to do a hybrid schedule, with some people coming into the office at least once or twice a week, and doing the rest of their work from home.

“I worked from home before in other jobs so I’m kind of familiar,” said Sandi D., of Provider Enrollment. “There’s a little different kind of organization skills you need to keep you focused and there’s a lot of distractions at home but because I’ve done that before, I think I was ready to jump back into it again. It wasn’t that difficult to me to do. This job is pretty well-suited cause a lot of our connections and communications is done through the computer anyway.” 

Since UHP was considered an essential organization at the height of the pandemic, some have not modified their schedule and have continued to come to work.

“I come in every day,” said Leslie B., of Finance. “I’ve been coming every day since the pandemic. Everybody else stays home, but for me, I have to come in cause I have to do deposits and close down the credit card machine, so we always need somebody here. So I’ve been coming in everyday, which is good.”

With vaccinations taking place, employees are confident and hopeful to make the return to the office. but some would like to resume a hybrid schedule to maintain flexibility.

“I would like to keep this schedule because it works with my coworkers on my team,” said Giselle B., UHP Executive Assistant. “And I think that we’re all kind of getting what we need out of it. And I think it benefits the company by making us happy that there is a flexibility option.”

Sandi is hopeful in the gradual return to normalcy. “The vaccination is done – I’m vaccinated. So I’m feeling a little bit less stressed out about that. Hopefully it’s going to get better.”

Watch more reflections here:

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