SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX 5) — Work started Monday on a new mural in San Francisco that pays tribute to hospital workers during the COVID-19 crisis with a unifying message.

As the Bay Area enters the fourth month of the COVID-19 lockdown, doctors and artists in San Francisco began work on a mural that shows how interconnected we are in the fight to overcome the coronavirus.

Artist Jennifer Bloomer came up with the story told by the mural being painted outside Zuni Café on Market Street. It begins with a doctor treating a critically ill patient.

“The patient survives and is able to leave the hospital,” explained Bloomer. “Because of this, she can bring flowers to a grieving friend. Because of that, he’s able to show up to work at a grocery store. He’s able to bring groceries to an elderly woman who can’t go out right now. Because of this, she’s able to cook dinner and care for her granddaughter, who comes home from a long day of work at the ER. It turns out she’s the same doctor who cares for the patient at the beginning.”

The mural is a collaboration between a group of ER doctors, the San Francisco General Hospital Foundation and a nonprofit known as Paint the Void, which has raised tens of thousands of dollars to commission dozens of murals all over San Francisco.

“It’s kind of a double whammy because we can uplift our community and help our artists find employment during COVID,” said Veronica Pheils with Paint the Void.

SF General ER Dr. Jessica Chow helped organize the effort.

“The thing we wanted to show with this mural is how much we are connected with each other,” said Dr. Chow. “Because someone that you touch — a friend, a family member — also touches other people. So we just want to make sure that we can stay as cognizant and respectful of everyone’s health as much as we can have control over that.”

“They’re doing their part in taking care of patients in the hospital and we’re all doing our part in our individual lives. All we can do is what we can do,” said Bloomer.

As the mural says, how we care shapes who we are.

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