$500,000 Ballad Health Foundation investment supports team members, installs Lavender Rooms at three hospitals


JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. – As part of Ballad Health’s ongoing work to support healthcare workers in the Appalachian Highlands, Ballad Health Foundation has invested nearly $500,000 to create state-of-the-art “Lavender Rooms” in each of the system’s tertiary hospitals.

What are Lavender Rooms?

Designed with the goal of providing short-term stress relief, Lavender Rooms will provide a respite for team members coping with the mental, emotional and physical burdens of providing bedside care.

Each Lavender Room is designed like a spa suite, featuring stations outfitted with zero-gravity chairs, salt walls and digital cinema sensory screens, creating a calming environment to help healthcare workers relieve stress.

Open to team members working at Holston Valley Medical Center, Bristol Regional Medical Center and Johnson City Medical Center, these rooms include ample space to meditate, practice yoga or simply find a moment of peace. Each suite is designed with relaxation first in mind, from the layout of the suite down to the choice of décor and wall art.

Relieving stress for our frontline team members

“Healthcare workers – especially frontline caregivers – have some of the most stressful jobs in the world, and every day they wake up to new challenges,” said Lisa Smithgall, Ballad Health’s chief nursing executive. “Providing our team members with opportunities to relax is one small way we can continue supporting them, especially after two of the most challenging years in healthcare.”

The relaxation suites opened for use on May 6, with open house events for team members in those three hospitals. After the open house events – which featured giveaways and ribbon-cuttings – the Lavender Rooms are open 24/7 with the caveat that all phones must be silenced and all conversations conducted in whispers.

Prize giveaways as we introduce our Lavender Rooms

Until Friday, May 13, all team members are invited to stop by the Lavender Room at any of the three hospitals to see what it has to offer and enter a drawing for prizes, including:

  • Martha Washington Inn spa certificate
  • iPad
  • Yeti cooler
  • Cornhole boards
  • Lavender gift basket

NOTE: The ballot boxes will be available in each of the tertiary hospitals through Friday, May 13, so team members can enter the drawing at any time during the week. (Only one entry per person, please.) You don’t have to be stationed at one of the three tertiary hospitals to enter the drawing – so all Ballad Health team members are eligible. Also, so all Ballad Health team members can enjoy Lavender Rooms this week, the rooms will remain unlocked until Friday, May 13, at 5 p.m. After that point, they will require badge access.

See a photo gallery at the bottom of this post from Friday’s opening of the Lavender Rooms.

Additionally, team members at Johnston Memorial Hospital in Abingdon, Virginia, are able to enjoy a special relaxation room, which was funded by the Johnston Memorial Hospital Foundation.

Community support through Ballad Health Foundation

“Ballad Health Foundation was eager to make these investments to support our true community heroes, who have sacrificed so much the past two years – in some cases, their own well-being,” said Jack Simpson, president of Ballad Health Foundation. “The COVID-19 pandemic has put our frontline nurses under pressure unlike anything healthcare workers have ever experienced, and while we can never do enough to show our appreciation, we’ll do everything we can.”