On Nov. 3, 65-year-old heart transplant patient at Cedars-Sinai, Delander Moore, voted for the first time in a Presidential election. The Palmdale resident was one of many hospital bed-ridden patients who participated in a two-day process that allows them to cast their ballots from Cedars-Sinai with the help of dedicated hospital employees. According to Soshea Leibler, manager of broadcast news at Cedars-Sinai Hospital, this marks the 20th year of the program.
“This is a great moment,” said Moore. “If you vote, that’s your power and I want to use mine.” Moore added, “When I got the call that they had a heart for me, I thought I would have to sacrifice my vote, but now I get to have my say.”
“In every election, we work to help our patients have their voices heard and their votes be counted,” said Camille Camello, director of Volunteer Services, who organized the project. “This year was complicated by COVID-19, but we are committed to helping our patients exercise their right to vote.”
On Nov. 2, Cedars-Sinai employees distributed the application to vote, so that the County Registrar’s office could determine their eligibility. Employees then picked up ballots for patients and returned them to the Registrar after they had been filled out.
“A lot of patients know they’re going to be in the hospital during Election Day,” Leibler told the Courier. “If they’re having a scheduled surgery, they may have voted earlier. Some patients who know they’re going to be in the hospital but were expecting to be discharged by Election day or maybe they’re in surgery, can all qualify.”
“It’s quite an undertaking because you know, we have more than 900 beds in the hospital,” Leibler added.